Manny Ozaeta, Account Supervisor

July was National Ice Cream Month, a fact I only learned at the end of the month.  I’m sure there were some great special events, discounts and celebrations that I missed out on (sigh).

President Ronald Reagan, adding that this deliciously cold treat was nutritious and fun, officially recognized this quasi-holiday in 1984. Since then it has been celebrated annually, with the third Sunday of July established as National Ice Cream Day.

Americans love their ice cream and this American in particular really looooves his ice cream. I try to explore as many different flavors as I can, including sea salt caramel, rose-lavender, and Irish cream macadamia among them. I try to enjoy it in a sandwich, in a cup, in a waffle cone, as a topping and/or by its yummy self. I am not alone; according to the International Dairy Food Association nearly 90 percent of our nation eats ice cream. With a plethora of flavors available, I was surprised to find out that we still rely and favor the standard vanilla and chocolate as number one and number two respectively.

Public relations can be just like ice cream in the sense that we have many flavors or strategies available at our disposal. It could be social media, blogs, podcasts or print media. In the end, however, we tend to rely on the basics, the flavors that bring us comfort. Self-identification and being relatable are important not only when eating our favorite frozen treat but also when we digest the messages and advertising. The fact that there is reliability with our favorites resonates too. Vanilla will always taste like vanilla and effective messages come from fundamental principles, no matter how it is ultimately packaged and sent out. Therefore, our PR strategies must also rely on basic elements of effective communication and in order to do so we must be precise, clear, on-point and brief.

With that, I’ll be waiting for next July to be entranced by the celebrations of ice cream. Until then, however, you may find me at a Dairy Queen counting the days.

For a list of the 15 most popular ice cream flavors, see below:

(Flavor, percent preferring)

1. Vanilla, 29%

2. Chocolate, 8.9%

3. Butter pecan, 5.3%

4. Strawberry, 5.3%

5. Neapolitan, 4.2%

6. Chocolate chip, 3.9%

7. French vanilla, 3.8%

8. Cookies and cream, 3.6%

9. Vanilla fudge ripple, 2.6%

10. Praline pecan, 1.7%

11. Cherry, 1.6%

12. Chocolate almond, 1.6%

13. Coffee, 1.6%

14. Rocky road, 1.5%

15. Chocolate marshmallow, 1.3%

All others, 23.7%

Source: International Ice Cream Association, 888 16th St., Washington, D.C., 2006.