A Guest Post by Sarah Evans (@PRSarahEvans)
For the past year, I’ve been on a quest to spread the word about open social collaboration and productivity and why it is the key to social media success and essential to every public relations professional. According to analysts at Altimeter Group, enterprise collaboration drives business value in four ways:
- Encourages sharing;
- Captures knowledge;
- Enables action; and
- Empowers people
Funny – these business values directly relate to what we, as PR professionals, strive to do everyday. So, how does open social collaboration fit in?
From small businesses to enterprise to government agencies — most are not armed with practical information about social collaboration platforms (or they’re using outdated work flows). There is a culture change that needs to take place within organizations and it starts with you.
Are you put off by the concept of investing some brain space for best practices in yet another methodology? Implementing a social collaboration and productivity platform, regardless of the one you choose, in your work flow will absolutely:
- Save time spent managing media resources;
- Increase efficiency in your efforts to garner media attention; and
- Decrease the number of emails, browser window and over tools used to produce content.
So, a little brain and time investment into a social collaboration platform can improve your life significantly.
In fact, I do everything from manage social media editorial and tactical processes to keep a constant, open dialogue about how I manage my time with my superiors.
It’s made a huge impact in my workflow and level of productivity. My task list and work flow went from 20+ browser windows and separate applications for: email, calendar, cloud storage, instant messaging, notes and task list to a streamlined, easy-to-digest collaboration and productivity feed. The streamlined visualisation alone makes me feel more organized and confident in my ability to get things done well.
Getting out of old (and bad) habits isn’t easy. It takes commitment to change. Even though I believe Tracky is the answer, it only works if you choose to do things better and build new habits. (Yes, I work with Tracky — but I joined their team because the platform transformed the way I was able to work and get things done. And, out of all the social collaboration platforms on the market, Tracky is the easiest to use).
Here’s how you can integrate social collaboration into your public relations 2.0 workflow. I created a Premium Module anyone can copy and use. This one focuses on time management and reporting to your superiors.
- Sign up for Tracky (www.tracky.com). It’s a must or this doesn’t work.
- Get your boss signed up for Tracky. Tell him or her that taking two minutes to sign up will save at least five (5) hours a week in email management.
- Create a group where all of the communication with your boss lives (because there’s probably a lot you’re working on). I use a Tracky PR group for mine.
- Visit our Tracky Premium Module, “HOW I SPENT MY TIME THIS WEEK”.
- Copy and paste the track and subtracks to your group (click the arrow in the upper right hand corner of the main track and click “Copy” then choose your new PR group). NOTE: The discussion will not copy, so you don’t have to worry about deleting it.
It’s up to you to think about all of the ways you can integrate social collaboration in your daily life. A few additional ideas include:
- Collaborative content creation – Work together in real-time via Google Docs within Tracky. Include the final decision makers so they may approve content from within a track, thus eliminating emails (and providing better documentation).
- Editorial planning – Create a shared calendar with everyone who contributes to your editorial efforts. Assign, brainstorm and whatever else you typically do and set up a calendar all can view.
To sum up, you can take your social PR efforts to the next level with social collaboration. That’s why I’m thrilled to introduce to you Tracky, which was built for life’s doers. The ones who get things done. It’s not only a social media tool for communication, but an open social collaboration platform focused on the art of DOing and helping you to be the best PR professional that you can be. Tracky is scaled for the enterprise, but accessible enough anyone can use.
Sarah Evans (@prsarahevans) is the chief evangelist at Tracky and owner of Sevans Strategy, a public relations and new media consultancy. She’s the author of new book, [RE]FRAME: Little Inspirations For A Larger Purpose(published by SlimBooks).