Share This: Social Media Handbook for PR Professionals

I’ve been involved with a great project over the past few months which finally came to fruition last week as the CIPR’s Social Media Advisory Panel launched a new social media and PR handbook.

Share This: The Social Media Handbook for PR Professionals contains 25 chapters spanning strategic resources, practical guidance, industry change and tools and technologies across a range of different sectors written by a range of experienced practitioners.

The book came about, as fellow panel-ee Julio Romo writes, because after three years providing social media counsel for the CIPR:

“last year we thought that the time was right to put together a book for everybody in business – those in PR and communications, as well as those in marketing, finance, sales and customer service. After all, social cut’s across business disciplines.”

Since being listed on Amazon the book has sold out – not a bad performance by a book originally conceived as a sharable pdf ebook. Ever the inquisitor, I was thinking about what has made the book so popular earlier this week and I believe I’ve distilled it into the following factors:

  1. Firstly, the handbook draws together a wealth of smart and experienced senior practitioners who cover a wide range of different topics yielding comprehensive, expert content
  2. Secondly, the book provides specific cases and practical detail for the changing nature of social media and PR – not just repeating platitudes about how social media is ‘changing everything’
  3. Finally, many social media books are written by US authors whereas Share This comes at the topic from a clear UK context, incorporating case studies; campaigns results; statistics and insight from UK-based practitioners

My contribution, ‘Social Media and The Third Sector’, features in the industry change section and examines how organisations in the non-profit sector need to think about their communications and campaigning strategies in relation to what I term the ‘new networked reality‘ in which they now operate.

I suggest that the nature of the sector should be ideally suited to the socially motivated aspects of this networked space but that a lot of the strategic and tactical changes that organisations need to make can run counter to conventional organisational thinking.

The chapter concludes by pointing to a future where organisations will need to become ‘hybrid’ and work with strategically aligned online networks of supporters, partner organisations and the increasingly networked and active public.