Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Taking Crisis Communication training to a new level with iPad

What do you do when the media is hammering at your door for a comment and all you want to do is hide? How will blogs, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other social media networks make your job harder? And is it possible to talk yourself out of trouble?

These are questions Darwin based public relations agency Creative Territory is helping local companies answer through its new crisis communication workshops using iPads.

Recovery was developed by Creative Territory to help organisations work through the steps of a crisis without actually getting their fingers burned.

Creative Territory Managing Director Tracy Jones says the new training module is like a create your own adventure for crisis communication.

“We put participants through a simulated crisis with the iPad, allowing them to make choices about how to deal with the communication challenges that come along,” she said.

Recovery uses expert facilitators and iPad-based consoles to provide a safe environment in which participants can learn about how a crisis develops, grows and can be managed.

Drawing on Creative Territory’s extensive experience in dealing with major issues and crises here in the Territory, Recovery is the only crisis communication simulation that takes the special needs of the Territory into account.

It is an Australian first, using an iPad interface to take you through a crisis scenario, the end of which is determined by the decisions you make along the way.

For more information on Recovery contact Tracy at Creative Territory on 8941 9169.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tracy Jones honored with President's Award

Creative Territory Managing Director Tracy Jones was honoured with the President's Award at the annual Public Relations Institute of Australia Golden Target awards last night.

The awards were announced in conjunction with the National Public Relations Institute of Australia (PRIA) annual conference, which is being held in Darwin for the first time this week.

The President's Award recognises outstanding service to the PRIA and its President.

Tracy has been a member of the National Board of the PRIA since 2004 and is the current National Treasurer. She served for two years as National President until 2009.

For more information about the Golden Target Awards winners, see

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Creative Territory's Jeannette Button honoured by PRIA

Creative Territory’s Jeannette Button will be inducted as a fellow of the Public Relations Institute of Australia tonight.

Fellowship is one of the highest honours bestowed on a member of the institute.

The induction ceremony comes just days after Jeannette was elected President of the NT Division of the PRIA.

Creative Territory’s managing director Tracy Jones said the team was proud of Jeannette’s achievements and wish her well as she now carries out duties at a national level.

“Jeannette is one of the Territory’s most senior and experienced public relations professionals and a role model for others,” Tracy said.

“She has chaired the National Conference Committee that arranged this week’s PRIA national conference, which is being held in Darwin for the first time."

Friday, October 22, 2010

Solar campaigns win PR awards

Campaigns to encourage Alice Springs residents to sign up to solar power have been honoured with State Awards for Excellence by the Public Relations Institute of Australia presented in Darwin last night.

The campaigns for Alice Solar City were planned and implemented by Creative Territory.

“Alice Solar City is changing the way central Australian residents live and work by harnessing the power of the sun,” Creative Territory Managing Director Tracy Jones said.

“It’s a great initiative and we’re proud to have been part of its success.”

Tracy and Laurelle Halford won a Gold award for the overall Energy Champions campaign. Laurelle also won a Highly Commended award for 100 Days of Solar, a campaign to convince 100 Alice Springs residents to install hot water systems in 100 days.

“Alice Solar City was Creative Territory’s very first client when we started four-and-half years ago, so these awards are special to us,” Tracy said.

Tracy also congratulated other Northern Territory award winners, the Michels Warren Munday team for the campaign Support NT Caught on behalf of the NT Seafood Council and Eleanor Sheppard from the Department of Education and Training for Recruiting Quality Teachers to Deliver Quality Education.

All NT award winners go into the national Golden Target Awards to be announced in Darwin next week.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

GRIND Youth Website Wins Internet Best Practice Award

Darwin City Council’s youth website GRIND has won the 2010 Australia and New Zealand Internet Best Practice Awards in the Best Youth Initiative category. GRIND was also a finalist in the Best Access Initiative Category.

GRIND has many purposes. It aims to be a positive website that is genuinely "by youth for youth". It provides a supported vehicle for a youth voice, promotes the positive contribution that young people make in our community, provides an outlet for youth culture and expression and debunks the negative stereotypes so often portrayed in mainstream media of young people.

GRIND, one of Council’s key projects, presents and coordinates diverse activities such as large scale music gigs, skills workshops and youth community consultations.

The entire production of GRIND from running team meetings, design of the site, editing, interviewing and administration is undertaken by the GRIND youth team with support from Council's Youth Services. All decisions relating to the running and production of the website are made by the GRIND youth team. Visit the site:

“I would like to congratulate those involved in the GRIND website, one of Council’s key youth projects. Too often these days, young people receive bad press – GRIND is an excellent way to showcase and demonstrate to the Darwin community and on a national level just how vibrant, creative and active these young people are,” Lord Mayor Graeme Saywer.

This recognition continues to showcase Council's excellence in providing high quality websites. In August Darwin City Council’s website scored the highest rating in an independent website usability study by 600 people of Australia’s capital city council websites.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Why every retail and hospitality business needs to get on to Foursquare

By Tracy Jones

There’s a revolution going on in the social media world that will change the way retail and hospitality businesses interact with the public – Foursquare.

And anyone who thinks they can ignore this platform like all other social media networks should think again – your business is probably already on it.

Foursquare is essentially a tool that allows people to mark places on an electronic map and post comments about them. Using mobile phones, users can “check in” to these places and share their views with the world.

The places people tend to mark are shops, restaurants, cafes, hotels and entertainment and tourist venues.

What makes Foursquare different from other social networks is its ability to locate nearby places and tell you in full detail what other people think of them – good and bad.

Here’s how it works. If you stand in the middle of Smith Street Mall and log into Foursquare using your mobile phone, the application brings up a list of places nearby including cafes, apartments, hotels and bars.

Now click on the “Tips” and you’ll get a list of what people think about these places. Here are a couple of real examples (without the names of the venues):

• “The banana spring rolls are tremendous.”
• “Not a fan of the prices here.”
• “One of the best restaurants in Darwin.”
• “Try the rice noodle soup with crispy chicken … delish.”
• “Girl at the front desk is rude.”
• “Avoid this place like it’s on fire.”

My bet is that 90 per cent of the Darwin businesses listed on Foursquare now have no idea they are there, let alone what people are saying about them.

If you’re not convinced about the value of being on Foursquare yet, here are four good reasons you should reconsider:

1. Go viral: If one person checks in to your business, they share the news with 50 or more friends on Facebook and Twitter. If 10 people check in, that’s 500. You can do the maths…

2. Get honest customer feedback: If someone checks in and loves your steak burger, you’ll find out straight away, along with all their friends. Conversely, if someone hates your schnitzel, everyone will find out. But at least you can do something about it.

3. Offer special discounts to people nearby: You can check out Foursquare places that are close to you and see if they have any special offers for anyone who checks in. Curve CafĂ© at Darwin Waterfront offers a “buy a drink and get a drink for a friend” for every second check-in. Worth a visit.

4. Reward your loyal customers: Get a loyalty program without the expensive set-up costs. Offer a free meal for every 10th check-in to your business. It’s easier to keep existing customers than to find new ones.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Students on track to complete house construction in just three days

After one day on the job young construction trainees at Marrara Christian College are on track to build a house in just three days.

Students from the College’s Fabrication and Construction Trade Training Centre – which includes 65 per cent Indigenous students – have installed the walls, floors and roof trusses on the revolutionary wooden flat-pack house.

Marrara Christian College Trade Training Centre Manager Richard Hart said the shell of the house will be complete at the end of day two.

“Today the students will concentrate on completing the ceiling and start on installing some windows,” Mr Hart said.

“The wiring and plumbing is underway and will also be finished before the day is out.”

The quick build home uses a unique panelised building system by Carter Holt Harvey which allows a home to be constructed on site by trainee construction workers under supervision and is perfect for remote communities where labour and accommodation costs can be high.

“With this new panelised building system, we can build a house from the ground to lock-up in just three to five days using construction trainees under the supervision of qualified tradesmen,” Mr Hart said.

Members of the public are invited to watch the house under construction.

The home is under construction at the training centre at the school in Amy Johnson Avenue. Visitors should follow the signs to the centre from the school entrance.