MHB WEEKLY: By the students, for the world

Speaker Series: Siobhan O’Neill | March 25, 2011

Each Friday, the MHB program hosts an industry pro with insight into career opportunities, marketplace trends and new ideas who engages students for two hours of class time. In the fall semester of 2010, the speaker series featured Ms. Siobhan O’Neill, a Senior Account Supervisor in the digital division at Edelman, a leading global public relations firm with offices in Los Angeles.

Ms. O’Neill engaged a stimulating discussion of the increasingly important role of social media within the world of public relations and big business. She emphasized the importance of starting with research and having a holistic awareness of the persuasive power of viral material and its ability to make or break a company’s reputation. She provided detailed descriptions of her responsibilities in supervising the digital components of PR-based Consumer, Entertainment, and Technology accounts at Nestlé and other firms. In order to effectively mitigate issues between clients and public representatives on a daily basis, Ms. O’Neill described how important it is to monitor the brand and what both employees and the public are saying about it. She also clarified the ways in which a business can successfully employ Facebook, Twitter, video campaigns and blogs to reach its consumers more efficiently.

As a young executive in the digital world, Ms. O’Neill explored the personal benefits of social networking in both the job search and in professional growth. She offered her knowledge of privacy controls on social sites, and stressed their importance; as she explained, it can be vital for an individual to differentiate between his or her personal account and his or her company account. She also shared how social media acumen can lead to new and exciting opportunities to represent a company such as Edelman, like the industry-wide competition in which she and a small team of coworkers presented ideas and innovations. Overall, Ms. O’Neill provided an engaging dialogue that reviewed essential information on the new and exciting topic of integrating social media into business practices — as well as into a personal résumé or profile.

Continue reading for Ms. O’Neill’s various social media pursuits, and more about her company.


You can find Ms. O’Neill on LinkedIn, on Twitter and on tumblr. For more on the nearly 4,000 international employees at Edelman, check out the company’s website here.

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    Established in 2009 at USC, the Master's of Science in Human Behavior is designed to equip students with knowledge of consumer psychology, social media and market analysis skills. This is our blog. Subscribe

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