Note: This is the third of a three-part guest series written by three AKHIA team members while Ben is on vacation. Today’s post is written by Kate Eidam, director of consumer development.

My original game of attack for this takeover was to (1) identify an interesting and engaging theme and (2) locate interesting and engaging content around said theme.

In my online sleuthing, perusing and general exploring, I was quickly sidetracked (with a nod to Peter Shankman’s ADOS – attention deficit OOH SHINY!) and unearthed items with no obvious connection except that they stopped me from clicking through to the next page (kind of like an online version of an NPR Driveway Moment).

(Distraction #1: Recent NPR Driveway Moments include Teri Gross’ Fresh Air interview with David Sedaris, All Things Considered’s How a Minority Biking Group Raises the Profile of Cycling and anything from Public Radio Exchange’s SaltCast: the Backstory to Great Radio Storytelling.)

Ok, now onto the actual post…

1. Inspiration be damned
I recently came across a Slate article that appeals to the writer in me and my obsession with how people retain and activate creativity in their lives. Mason Currey, author of Daily Rituals: How Artists Work, wrote a series examining the daily rituals of artists – including Entry 15 that started with a John Updike quote, “The pleasures of not writing are so great that if you ever start indulging them you will never write again.”

What stopped me on this post and made it particularly apropos is that I am guilty of what I suspect many writers/PR/creative types do… talk myself into a corner and repeat the dialogue with myself that I can only write and create if the conditions are optimal, when inspiration strikes. But because I’m in the agency business, waiting for a lightning bolt of brilliance isn’t always going to cut it.

This summed it up for me: “…it is the process of working itself that will give rise to new ideas. And with steady application, you can expect to hit inspired patches from time to time.” The lesson? Get off my ass and just do it. Inspiration will come along with hard work.

2. Elected officials (slightly) win in Battle PR v Government
The Poynter Institute recently profiled a survey that concluded that journalists trust elected officials more than PR professionals.

The article also points out that journalists aren’t off the hook, as a Gallup poll showed that “only 23% of Americans trust newspapers, TV news.

Bottom line for us on the PR side of the business? We have a mountain that we must continue to climb as an industry to reach our role as trusted advisor to our clients and employers, as well as both an advocate and translator between them and their audiences.

Grab your crampons. Let’s go.

(Distraction #2: If you’re a fellow NPR fan, you know you’ve always wondered this when you hear Ira Glass, Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson or Ofeiba Quist-Arcton sign off on air: Why Do NPR Reporters Have Such Great Names?)

3. FLOTUS leverages Instagram
First Lady Michelle Obama is using Instagram to record and share her travels through Africa.

While I use my Instagram account to photograph the food I eat, my 5-year-old twin nieces and four-legged children, Mrs. Obama is using it to raise awareness of important issues, document things that matter and make the presidency and its activities more approachable by the general public. It’s definitely a thought starter for me.

You can follow her travels on Instagram or #FLOTUSinAfrica.

4. Influencers can be any age
I came across an article on the Today Show site that profiles Alonso Mateo, a 5-year-old with a fashion stylist mother. He has his own Instagram account with 11,000+ followers. The article delved into whether or not he was being exploited on social media combined with perspective on him as a young “style icon.”

I’m not going to debate the pros and cons here, but as a marketer, I was intrigued by the prospect that online influence comes in many different ages and sizes and perspectives.

And a few fun topics to wrap it up:

5. Change up the scenery
I get bored easily (no surprise there, this is why I work at an agency). This directly impacts my patience level with my laptop background. I’ve been known to change it multiple times in a single day. So when I saw this Facebook update from Mashable yesterday, I clicked without a second thought. 20 Minimalist Backgrounds for a Simpler Desktop led me to downloading image 2 for its color and perspective, 14 (for this Star Wars fan, it matches the artwork in my office) and 17 (for the best graphic representation of the daily battle in my brain).

6. Post-it’s meet Vine
Check out what happens when sticky notes meet a guy with mad Vine video skillz (and yes, that is most definitely skills with a z). Imagine mini choreographed music videos, movie scenes and general mischief and shenanigans (which is why I love them so much).