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Your Preferred Public Relations Partner in Cebu and Southern Philippines

Public Relations in southern Philippines this 2012 (d)

Impact of the 2013 elections.

The post on Miss Universe runner up Chamcey Supsup and businessman-politician Glenn Soco of One Cebu was one of the most viewed so far in

A huge portion of the broad social media community is involved in advocacy and sharing of politically-related news and views. In the same manner, government starting with President Noynoy Aquino and a growing number of political personalities are also actively engaging social media.

PRworks, for instance, has decided to join the political conversations last October 2011 in anticipation of the increase in traffic for politically-relevant blogs. The agency has encouraged and supported our networks of writers and bloggers to join which is designed broadcast views from the Philippine south.

Consider also the impact on Philippine politics of extensive use and success of engaging social media in political mobilizations abroad like the 2011 Arab Spring  and Occupy movement. Then there is the 2012  presidential elections in the United States. Facebook and Twitter users would more likely participate in offline political meetings. Online sharing is leading to offline engagement.

Politicians interested in running for national and local public offices during the 2013 midterm elections would be stupid to ignore the importance and power of engaging social media communities. Already, several Facebook accounts and pages of known politicians. Some have also gone into putting up blogs and even Twitter accounts.

This means spreading political campaign budgets to include publicity through social media. Those who refuse to do so for various reasons would find their campaigns overtaken by social media-savvy politicians. Because the central offices of national candidates are based in Metro Manila, politicians would need public relations assistance to engage traditional and social media in southern Philippines.

Understanding and insights into how social media can help a particular political campaign vary however. Professional public relations practitioners could help in crafting an integrated political marketing campaign.

While the corporate world needs to deal with the faster spread of bad news – a situation that bred more crisis communicators, politicians running for elective positions face active competition that (it is safe to assume) engages in demolition tactics. Politicians need to learn fast in controlling social media conversations.

Role of public relations will grow further.

As the corporate world, the political community and stakeholders, and traditional media organizations in the Philippines engage social media to reach the public, the value of proactive and reactive public relations grows with it. Our experience as PR partners in the Visayas and Mindanao for Globe Telecom and Nokia Philippines has made us realize and take advantage of new ways to communicate using emerging technologies.

Public relations agencies like PRworks will have to compete with advertising and SEO companies that pay for placement however. PR primarily focuses on building earned hits and communities of followers.

We, in PRworks, are doing this by engaging traditional and social media in online and offline activities and networks. Aside from helping Cebu and Visayas bloggers organize their events, for instance, the agency initiated the formation of the Media Information Network for Nutrition and Development (MIND) 7 with the National Nutrition Council (NNC) in Central Visayas. We also moved to form the Tourism and Heritage Information Network (THINK) 7 together with the Department of Tourism (DOT) also in Central Visayas.

Still, the pace at which information moves in all directions is a continuing challenge. We are dealing with an ever changing traditional and social media world. This means the continuing challenge for building brands and reputations, helping clients face crisis situations proactively, and engaging communities in southern Philippines online and offline. Back


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Public Relations in southern Philippines this 2012 (c)

Cebu City Mayor Mike Rama (center) poses with Miss Earth 2011 candidates and Charlyn Macaraeg, image model of GT Cosmetics, during the second Visayas Blogging Summit held in Cebu City. Charlyn was promoting GT & Me, the Facebook community of GT Cosmetics. PRworks helped organize the event.

Emerging social media communities.

Since the first Filipino bloggers began writing online at the turn of the century, their numbers and significance have grown as the years passed. In 2010, Visayas and Mindanao bloggers have separately organized blogging summits and awards for several years now. Globe Telecom, Nokia Philippines, and the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. (RAFI) have found engaging an increasing number of bloggers effective in promoting products, services and advocacy online and offline.

Meanwhile, Facebook communities have likewise grown around places to several hundreds of thousand members like ‘I love Cebu.’ Groups such as “Barkadahan Tsika Tsika Cebu” have reached over 20,000 members. More locally-based SMEs have begun engaging these online communities for promoting products and services. GT Cosmetics has gone the route of creating GT & Me – a Facebook community that celebrates “Gandang Tunay” or true beauty.

The growth of social media communities is abetted through active engagement by traditional print, radio, and television media outlets.

The power of these social media communities was seen in how fast the spread of information about the tragedy wrought by typhoon Sendong in Northern Mindanao and the mobilization of resources to help the victims. Thus aside from the traditional media, top Philippine corporations like Globe Telecom posted advisories about its relief efforts through social media.

Come 2012, PRworks anticipates that public relations will continued to be defined by developments in social media. Social media will grow as the information-dissemination avenue for both top corporations and SMEs in southern Philippines. Read part D. Back


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250 bloggers joined the Visayas Blogging Summit 2011

Cebu City Mike Rama and Ms. GT Cosmetics Charlyn Noble Macaraeg pose with Miss Earth candidates Miss England, Estonia, Guatemala, and Guam.


The Cebu Bloggers Society Inc. (CBSi) successfully conducted 2nd Visayas Blogging Summit 2011, the biggest social media gathering of some 250 bloggers across the Visayas region last November 26 at SM City Cebu.

CBSi has clinched partnerships with SM City CebuRamon Aboitiz Foundation Inc.PR Works, and GeiserMaclang in staging the summit.

CBSi has also secured support of VirtualStaffFinder.comWatsons,International Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (IPI),, Bluewater ResortsTibiao Fish SpaCrimson Resort and SpaHero Hungarian Sausage,Coffee DreamBos CoffeeHarolds,HoneyCombFC.comNokiaGlobe, GT CosmeticsCebu Daily NewsThe FreemanSunstar Cebu, Panay NewsABS-CBNGMATV 5,GeohMediaBrennAlmario.comJunixBlog.comHome Radio,Monster Radio and Y101, for the event.

CBSi also gathered the support of various blogging groups and professional organizations to the 2nd Visayas Blogging Summit, including Cagayan de Oro Bloggers Inc., Davao Bloggers, Iligan Bloggers Society, Iloilo Bloggers, Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Manila Bloggers Network, Mindanao Bloggers, and Negros Bloggers.

With the theme, “Blogging and Beyond”, the 2nd Visayas Blogging Summit featured reputable speakers in the field of social media.

The event’s keynote speaker was Chris Ducker, founder of Live2Sell Group, a business process outsourcing firm working with clients around the world. He talked about a professional blogging titled From Blog to Business – Getting Serious Online!

Other speakers included Janette Toral, author of several books and research reports on social media and the Internet, who talked about social media responsibility; Joanne Apat, director of Online Marketing & eBusiness Consulting at Gwion Limited Hong Kong  Tim Bennet of Argon Management, Brad Geiser of GeiserMaclang, and Max Limpag of Sun Star Cebu and bloggers Vernon Joseph Go and Evanjohnn Mendoza talked about personal blogging.

Kabataan Party List Rep. Raymond Palatino, a blogger since 2004 and the South Asia editor of Global Voices, broadened the discussion to a global advocacy perspective while Gina Lopez of the ABS-CBN Foundation pushed the advocacy against mining in Palawan.

The Visayas Blogging Summit, which was first organized by the Iloilo Bloggers in Iloilo City, is a gathering of bloggers in the Visayas to talk on issues and concerns related to blogging and discuss how to further make blogging an effective tool for community development.

This year, the Visayas Blogging Summit highlighted the value of blogging as a potent tool in community development and in encouraging community participation.

For more information on the 2011 Visayas Blogging Summit, or to register, please visit

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‘GT & Me’ fans win complete set of GT products

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Excited winners have begun receiving complete sets of GT Cosmetics products simply for posting their pictures in “GT & Me,” an emerging Facebook community of GT Cosmetics users, and sharing these with their friends online.

“We believe in the power of social media in attracting users from different islands in the Philippines to connect with each other and with us. Our experience showed that users eagerly share with their friends about the benefits of our products. GT & Me offers them a platform online,” said Engr. Leonora Salvane, owners of GT Cosmetics.

Click this link to GT & Me and "Like" the fan page!

“Four winners from as far as Pampanga, Batangas, and Dumaguete City have already received their prizes. They posted and shared pictures of themselves with the products,” said Victoria Lago, one of the administrators of GT & Me and social media specialist of PRworks Inc.

Lago identified the winners as Katrina Mae B. Manalastas from Porac, Pampanga; Vivien Barbara G. Abella from Dumaguete City; Marjorie B. Escamillas from Batangas; and Mae Tulabing also from Dumaguete City.

Two winners from Cebu — Bethlehem D. Dabasol of Cordova and Fe Batan Pepito of Liloan –also received their prizes, Lago said.

Three new winners will also be getting a set of GT soaps namely, Roshel Quidado Madrigal of Poblacion, Muntinlupa City; Sophia C. Salipot of Wood Estate Village, Molino, Bacoor, Cavite; and Ramil Pamorada De Guzman of Camba, Arayat, Pampanga.

For GT & Me members, ‘GT” is a celebration of true beauty of “Gandang Tunay” ug “Gwapa Tinuod.”

The GT Soap Line includes the GT Carrot Soap, all-natural whitening ingredients with carrot extracts rich in Beta Carotene helps promote younger looking skin; the GT Papaya Soap, with natural exfoliating and whitening effects from nutrients contained in the papaya extracts that also helps heal the skin making it clear and free from unwanted discolorations; the GT Bleaching Soap, enriched with alum or tawas and has natural bleaching and deordorizing effect that leaves skin looking healthy and soft while bleaching.

The GT Cream Line, meanwhile, includes the GT Bleaching Night Cream that removes dark spots and skin blemishes when applied regularly before going to bed; the GT Moisturizing Day Cream which is a combination of anti-aging, moisturizing, skin vitamins, skin whitening and SPF60 ingredients that keeps the skin protected from the sun’s harmful rays; and the GT Sunblock Whitening Cream which has SPF15 and is a moisturizer, skin protection, make-up base and whitening cream in one that evens out skin tone without clogging the pores resulting to an even and clearer complexion.

The GT Witch Hazel Extract Clarifiance is a skin cleanser and freshener which effectively removes make-up and dead skin, dark spots and other skin blemishes. It will leave skin smooth, wrinkle-free, fresh and younger looking.

To discover how to join GT & Me and win GT products, click and

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Commemorative Book on the Saint John Bosco pilgrimage

The pictures and infographics in this blog were from and the Facebook page of Fr. Lan Guiao. We selected and posted some that grabbed our attention and give this blog's readers an idea of what's happening.

The PRworks team has begun conceptualizing the planned commemorative book on the Negros-Cebu leg of the pilgrimage of the relic of Saint John Bosco in the Philippines in coordination with representatives of the Salesians of Don Bosco-Philippine South Province.

The relic is scheduled to arrive in Bacolod City on December 5 and in Cebu on December 12, 2010. The book intends to document this once in a lifetime event (the pilgrimage is being carried out in preparation for the 200th birth anniversary of Saint John Bosco on 2015) in a coffee table memento that both refreshes our memories and serves as an instrument for continuing the saint’s work.


The book will contain: messages of Rector Major and Fr. Provincial, messages of Bishop Cantillas, and Bishop Buzon; an article on the life and works of Don Bosco;  an overview of SDB’s life and works in Phil. south province with Pakistan (mission area); an overview of the Salesian Family: SDB, FMA, Salesian cooperators, Past Pupils, Don Bosco Volunteers, Damas Salesianas, Caritas Sisters, Association of Mary Help of Christians; an overview of the significance and global journey of DB’s Relic; and of course a photo gallery with write ups of the visit of DB’s relics in Negros and Cebu.

While the PRworks team working on this will be coordinating with the photo/video documentation team headed by Fr. Fidel Orendain SDB, we are thinking of the possibility of getting a full time professional photographer who is a Bosconian to go with Fr. Fidel’s team when the relic arrives in Bacolod until it leaves Cebu for Manila on December 23, 2010.

Public participation

More important, we are looking into the direction of getting public participation for the making of this book by sending us photos and videos via email and through a Facebook page. The best 10 or 20 photos sent shall be used in the commemorative book and the senders (so they better write their complete contact information) shall be given free copies each. If potential sponsors will agree, we shall be able to give more giveaways. What do you think?

Sponsorship a privilege

Now, we don’t want the commemorative book to look like a commercial catalog so we shall be writing features with pictures about projects and other good works of sponsors or their participation in the different pilgrimage activities instead of advertisements. The privilege to become a sponsor shall be limited to those with advocacy and/or corporate social responsibility projects as well as those with community achievements and those actively helping make the Saint John Bosco relic pilgrimage a success.

Yes, sponsorship shall be a privilege to a deserving few with the approval of the SDB-FIS community.

Your inputs

We in PRworks feel we don’t have the monopoly of ideas on how to make this book the best that we could produce given the tight schedule. We need to turnover the first 1,500 copies of the commemorative book on January 28 or 29, 2011 before the Don Bosco Day celebration in Cebu City.

Feel free to interact with us on this project by inputing your comments below or in the PRworks Visayas-Mindanao (Philippines) Facebook page. Your inputs shall be valuable in this work in progress.

For those interested in sponsoring this project, please contact us at or at (6332) 4167159 and (6332) 4134062 or visit our office at 64 Sanciangko Street, Cebu City which is across the USC Main Gym.

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Initial foray into social media boosts GT cosmetics

GT Cosmetics events are getting posted in other sites ...

Expansion beyond the shores of Cebu to other Visayan Islands and Mindanao for a local cosmetics maker could not have been as fast this year without a boost from social media particularly bloggers based in Cebu, Davao, Cagayan de Oro, and Iloilo Cities.

This developed after the Cebu-based GT Cosmetics began expanding its market for products like its carrot and whitening soaps this year with a series of media launches in key urban centers in the Visayas and Mindanao. GT Cosmetics products are now displayed in practically all major malls in the Visayas and Mindanao and convenience stores like Watsons.

“Aside from members from the local media like print, radio and television, we also extended invitations to bloggers. Not only was I surprised by the interest of the blogging community, the impact of write-ups in blogs continues to astound me,” said Engineer Leonora Salvane, owner of GT Cosmetics.

She noted that even after the initial excitement weeks after each launch, the articles posted in the online versions of local media outlets and the blogs continues to stimulate interest and interaction online.

“The articles even got posted and commented in a Las Vegas online paper and product review websites,” an excited Salvane said. Because of this, the company now intends to develop this presence in social media especially with its goal of expanding its present foothold in Metro Manila.

For GT Cosmetics, this foray into social media has a lot of promise considering that the Philippines, which has a population of some 99 million Filipinos, already has 29.7 million Internet users.

Internet World Stats recorded that the number of Internet users in the Philippines has grown tremendously from a mere 2.6 percent of the population in 2000 or a growth of 27.1 percent in ten years.

Doris Mongaya, PRworks Inc. managing director, noted that in 2009, Filipino Internet users numbered 24 million. This means there was tremendous growth of some 5.7 million Filipino users by July 2010.

Growing communities of bloggers, people who put up and regularly write in web logs popularly called blogs, are making their presence felt online and offline.

Concentrated in Visayas and Mindanao urban centers, many bloggers are attending and writing about community developments including their experiences with GT Cosmetics products, said Mongaya.

PRworks, which has been helping GT Cosmetics in its ambitious expansion plans, is now laying down plans for broadening the online presence of the cosmetics maker especially in popular social media platforms such as Facebook.

“We, however, recognize that building successful online communities for GT Cosmetics is earned and a result of hard work. The recognition and support online are a result of experiences with quality products. It is largely free but must be won through word-of-mouth online,” said Mongaya whose agency has also made its mark online.

The PRworks Online blog (, which now has over 12,000 unique views, has earned for the agency choice clients like NEO Laptops and a cell phone manufacturer.

“We believe our experiences with marketing online will further boost GT Cosmetics as its looks forward to markets beyond Visayas and Mindanao,” Mongaya said.

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