Social Media and PR Notes

Social Media and Public Relations: Eight New Practices for the PR Professional by Deirdre K. Breakenridge

1-2 sentence summary of the book’s purpose:

-the importance of making a social media policy in a company (getting everyone to use it)

-making your brand image coherent and working as a team

How the approach of the book’s author can be understood in terms of Nancy Baym’s discourses:

-Baym’s 4 major social discourses of new technology:

-Technological Determinism

-Social Construction of Technology

-Social Shaping


-Social Shaping-technology and social context influence each other

-combination of techno-determinism and social construction

-Pg. 37-taking the time to test and implement technology as a part of his function

Who the audience is and that affects what topics are addressed:

-social media will become a big field

-the book is written for young professionals

-someone looking to organize their company

-regulate internal organizations

Concepts from earlier in the semester that would be productive to bring into conversation with this book:

-Pg. 23-Disembedding (communication/collaboration in different locations)

-Crisis on Social Media-Nightmare Readers (Marwick and Boyd “I Tweet Honestly”)

-Social Ties (maintaining Twiiter, Google +)-Baym Chapter 4-7

-Bridging Social Capitol-using weak ties to obtain resources-Baym Chapter 4-7

-Immaterial Labor (Terranova)-maintaining the reputation of your brand/PR

8 New Practices:

1. The PR Policymaker-leads the social media policy development process

-responsible for policy development, assembling a core social media team, doing research and measuring policy compliance

2. The Internal Collaboration Generator-evaluates how social collaboration can start internally (within a team or department)

-responsible for handling concerns about any changes and preparing for any transitions and moving your organization toward an updated internal communications model

3. PR Technology Tester-takes the time to research, test, and implement technology as a part of his function

-responsible for determining the best technology, platform, or tools

4. Communications (COMMS) Organizer-knows an old communications process does not enable the company to reach social media success

-analyzes the company’s current communications process

-must help create a new process and management of information for the whole company, and then have individual departments manage the process on a micro level

5. Pre-Crisis Doctor-monitors social media conversations and tracks the sentiment of customers when conversations are under “control”

-has a crisis strategy for social media—monitoring and having the right tools available, knowing which company personnel should participate, keeping track of communication throughout the situation

-knows how to evaluate and avert the situation

6. Relationship Analyzer-analyzes the psychographics of people based on like-mindedness and common critical issues, and the study of behavioral actions

-three-part process—development of audience profile, technology to analyze direction, strategy to build relationships based on community culture

7. Reputation Task Force Member-based on the need to be proactive with brand reputation, provide internal education about brand value, and build a team of relentless sentiment auditors

-protects the reputation of your company and your products by building the human face, helping consumers understand the brand’s core values, learning the best way to monitor sentiment, and growing the reputation task force team

8. Master of the Metrics-help prove the value of PR and social media engagement by showing more measurement and accountability

-capture the metrics or Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) on the macro level

Class Discussion:

-very detailed, easy to follow, but must have a background in social media

-must know the old practices

-general guide

-not very old book, but already could be updated

never goes beyond the online world

-why we do these things and how they affect the offline world of our brand

-the online world existing in a social context [offline]

-asking and answering her own questions

young professionals are the perfect people to implement these practices because we understand how to use these practices but need step out of our own frame of reference

-take for granted how much of a background we have in social media

-If aimed at someone not technologically savvy, does it do a good job?

-she doesn’t go too in depth, assumes you know a little about social media and PR

-gets the ball rolling, motivation, broad, overwhelming

-gives the impression that anyone can make these changes/use these practices to change the company-context is important b/c some companies have interns make these change, while other companies only allow higher level positions

-each practice seemed so separate, but many of these practices are done by the same person, there was a lot of overlap

-written from a business perspective, not a cultural one

-Who is the imagined audience? Who is the target audience?

-Would we be better at making money if we brought the cultural, social and business ideas together instead of focusing just on one? (asked by Prof P-S) Intersectionality?àbringing these concepts together/overlapping

-Business standpoint, make more human

-Does she do a good job of answering why we need to do these things?

-these ideas could have been condensed

-for a younger generation, this book is too slow and manual-like

-we want everything fast, the medium of a book=good?

-structure and format make not be good for younger generations



  1. […] Each of these roles are vital to becoming a champion of the social media sphere, yet their descriptions are very straightforward and simple, leaving me to believe that the target audience would be PR professionals who have some existing knowledge of how social media works, but need a play by play of how to mold and implement their skills into a coherent PR plan. Thus, the book is directed towards the corporate company/business standpoint rather than to an individual social media user. (Also mentioned by clcab and juliepuliem) […]

  2. […] by Don Slater’s article Social Relationships and Identity Online and Offline. My classmate Julie Meltzer also saw this connection. Slater introduces the term disembedding to talk about communication […]

  3. […] that is discussed in her book, Personal Connections in the Digital Age. (also mentioned by clcab, juliepuliem From this perspective, “the consequences of technologies arise from a mix of […]

  4. […] (Caroline Maeda, Cari Lieberman, Victoria Leib, Helen Li, Natalia Karavasili, Madeline Knight, and Julie Meltzer) and I noticed was that in relation to our readings, and in particular those of Nancy Baym in the […]

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