This is a first for me, the book review in two parts. I found so much useful information in the book Groundswell by Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff that I thought it would be best to break the review in two. Now I know why this book is a BusinessWeek bestseller and when I mentioned that I was going to read Groundswell my community on Twitter told me how much I would enjoy the book. Thank you Twitter friends, you were right! Tapping into the Groundswell is a great experience and I want to share my thoughts with you.
On April 14th, the #PRStudChat community was faced with its first small crisis. Valerie Simon and I had planned another dynamic chat session that would focus on our graduating PR seniors, jobs and the hiring process. Everyone was gathered and ready; our PR pros, students, educators were present and our special guests were just introduced. Unfortunately, we didn’t get very far into the chat as we immediately realized that Twitter was down. Valerie and I had to assess the situation, respond quickly to the community and then continue with our damage control.
In December 2009, I had the honor of keynoting Social Media Congress in Amsterdam. It’s such a small world when you travel all the way to Holland to meet people/companies from the United States. As I was finishing my session, I met Joel Kramer, sales director at Bazaarvoice. Coincidentally, I had used a Bazaarvoice case study and the results in my presentation.
In 2003, my book “The New PR Toolkit” was published by Prentice Hall. I co-authored this manuscript with a very talented journalist, Thomas DeLoughry, who at the time was the editor of Internet Week. Our goal was to present to PR professionals a better way to develop and implement online media relations strategies, from both a PR professional and an editor’s point of view. To this day, it was one of my favorite projects and a book that I believe did a good job educating PR people on early web PR (or web 1.0) best practices.
We’re getting close to our April 14th #PRStudChat discussion. Because it’s almost graduation, our focus for the chat will be JOBS! Yes, it’s that time when our graduating seniors are preparing to make the big transition into the communications work world. It’s exciting and challenging at the same time. To help our seniors, Valerie (@valeriesimon) and I decided to plan a chat session with several special guests who are experts in PR recruiting. And, we ask all of our educators and pros to join in to give their advice too.
When I think about the way that I use social media to collaborate, I automatically focus on the tremendous benefits it has for my business. I’d like to think that I manage my time very well during the day to accomplish many goals, whether they are related to my agency Mango!, client work, my writing projects, speaking engagements, PR 2.0 training sessions or helping people with PR questions in my communities. No matter how many goals I set and need to achieve in a given timeframe, I’m still really active in my favorite networks. Why? Social media helps me with the incredible knowledge and information that I need to stay on top of my industry and client industries too. It provides with an abundance of research I need for my writing projects and presentations. I really enjoy building relationships in my communities whether it’s my own blog or Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn. Social media is also my coffee break and sometimes my lunch.
It’s amazing how the tables have turned and public relations professionals are getting a taste of what it’s like to be the “reporter” of the news or the new influencer. It is one of the greatest experiences to finally understand what it’s like to be in a “journalist’s’” shoes. Of course, I use the word journalist in quotes, as I’m certainly not formally trained as a journalist. I just feel like I’m a born writer at heart.
Media is changing and we have to change with the times. As we grow and embrace what social media has to offer for our brands and consumers, we learn that traditional PR and social media complement one another to build stronger relationships and communities. I often tell my clients that you don’t have to abandon what’s working in the traditional realm to engage in social communities. But, rather, you can take a hybrid approach and capture the best of both worlds.