Notes – Social Media And Public Relations

In Deirdre K. Breakenridge’s Social Media and Public Relations, she details what she believes to be the eight essential social media practices that create success in today’s PR world. The 8 practices work together is a formulaic way. Breakenridge stresses the importance of integrating social media into traditional PR tactics and allow the online world to postivily influence the offline world communication.

1. The PR Policymaker – Develop and maintain social media policies

2. The Internal Collaboration Generator – Increase internal/external social media usage and collaboration across a brand.

3. The PR Technology Tester – Strategically uses and tests social media for better communication- peer to peer and to the public

4. The Communications (COMMS) Organizer – Guides a company into the new forms of social media communications

5. The Pre-Crisis Doctor – Strategic and pre-emptive crisis management

6. The Relationship Analyzer – Monitors and assesses ways in which people interact and respond to social media

7. The Reputation Task Force Member – Assures that a companies reputation and name is kept clean via social media and knows how to respond to a threat to this

8. The Master of the Metrics – Measures and distinguishes social media business outcomes/outtakes/outputs

  •  Essential to integrate the new practices with the old
  •  Value of PR is raised in public eye w/ new social media practices
  • Tips on how to use social media, not extremely specific on what to do – simply a guide
  • Could have used more specific examples, needs to be updated (more with twitter, instagram)
  • Felt like a motivational speaker coming in for an hour and just dusting the surface
  • Many of the jobs actually overlap when in actually, many overlap and meld together (calculated move for the purpose of the book/audience strategy?)
  • Lights the fire, but doesn’t give the tools to keep it running
  • Perhaps more details on how the conversation in the online world can be continued in the offline world

Audience of the book:

The audience of the book is young, PR professionals with some sembalance of prior knowledge to the world of traditional PR. The audience is in need of help to be up to date with social media practices. Generally speaking, the text seems to be geared towards an organization, company, or department as opposed to an individual.

Course Connections:

Immaterial Labor – Producing cultural content on a visible forum, emotional capital – Pr Technology Tester. (Terranova “Free Labor: Producing Culture for the Digital Economy”) Can be compensated or not, can be performed by an employee or a consumer (adding value to the brand)

Social Shaping – Breakenridge speaks of online communication working to enhance offline communication and mutually benefit each other. Practices in the online world affords respect in the offline world. The offline world affords an arena for online discussion to continue. Breakenridge calls for a modification of traditional practices by utilzing modern technology.

“You cannot control communication. You can only guide and shape experiences…” (pg 146)

“Social media and public relations cannot be static when technology evolves and changes communications everyday.” (pg 151)

Social Ties – Gaining social capital (resources embedded in social relationships) via social media, task embedded in many of Breakenridge’s social media practices (Baym)

“People prefer information from people that they can trust” (pg 146)

Surveillance – Relationship Analyzer & PR Policy Maker, who is watching whom? (Humphreys)

Lurking -Learning about the audience and the public – how they response, what they are interested in, how they engage. Learning about how internal discussion is shaped via social media. (relates to surveillance) – The Internal Collaboration Generator


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