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Evaluating the media: May 2015

PR geekiness - the tools & techniques to gain insights from PR exposure

Thursday, May 21, 2015

#PRStack - a crowd sourced reference book for PRs

How-to's are growing in popularity.  According to the Hobson and Holtz Report FIR (#808) from earlier this week research by Google found that searches for how-to videos on YouTube are up 70%, year on year. 

A few months ago I asked Stephen Waddington if I could do a guest post on his blogAlways ahead of the curve, Stephen suggested a how-to, and the result was this post on  using Google Analytics to track PR outcomes.

While it's great to pontificate over strategy, there is a time when you need to just get on with it and how-to's make this easier. Following on from this it seemed obvious to look at other how-to topics to contribute with. And recently there was one on using Caspio to make a fully functioning database online.

And then there is #PRstack, an open crowd sourced repository of tools used by PR people. An ebook was going together and I volunteered a section on how to get results out of Brandwatch. The great thing about the book is it covers such a diverse selection of tools from Google Predict, to Buzzsumo, Topsy and Hemingway. They are all PR focussed, and written by PR people.

So where will #PRstack go from here? The tools are changing all the time and this content is time limited. Should it be just a snapshot of where we are now, to be replaced in 6-9 months by app which melds a load of PR tools into one? No idea but it will be fun to watch.   

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Practical guide to PR Tools - free ebook launched #PRstack

Tackling public relations workflow

The #PRstack book published today developed as a crowdsourced project to tackle modern public relations workflow.
It consists of a series of case studies by public relations practitioners exploring modern aspects of public relations practice.
There are 18 contributors and 40+ practical how-to examples of tools used in public relations, content marketing and search engine optimisation (SEO).
The book is distributed free under a Creative Commons license via the #PRstack community. You can download a PDF via Slideshare and the chapters will all be shared as a blog posts each day over the next three weeks.

Modernising public relations

Public relations is rapidly modernising from publicity to influencer relations, and brands are developing their own media and communities.
The third-party tools market isn’t quite so neat and clear cut. It is characterised by vendors selling tools packed with features all looking for a problem to solve.
My #PRstack: a practical guide to modern PR tools and workflow is made up of 17 chapters split into the following sections:
  1. Social listening and planning - how to identify and listen to a community using the social web and other data sources
  2. Content - creating content as a means of public relations engagement
  3. Curation - curating content on the social web to turn social content into owned
  4. Building relationships online - examples of influencer relations and community management
  5. Example #PRstack workflows - putting tools together to create a complete workflow
  6. Project management - managing a public relations campaign or any form of project

Building #PRstack

The magical thing about creating a community is that you never quite know how it’s going to develop.
Some gather around an event and disperse as quickly as they came together. Others quickly establish a purpose and hierarchy and become bogged down in bureaucracy.
Some, like the community of practitioners that I spearhead in my day job are noisy and thrive, developing a culture and life of their own.
The #PRstack community started as a blog post in mid-December. I publicly bemoaned the lack of mature workflow for public relations.
A community developed around a Google spreadsheet over the next 50 days. It described more than 100 tools.
Prezly’s Frederik Vincx offered development time to build a web app to sit on top of the #PRstack Google document to help people interrogate the data. Prezly is a storytelling platform for brands that is listed in the #PRStack.
We launched the PRstack app in early March. It now describes more than 250 tools.
During a #PRstack Twitter chat we explored ways to develop #PRstack. My #PRstack: a practical guide to modern PR tools and workflow is the result.

Meet the #PRstack crew

Thank you to Frederik and the team at Prezly for their commitment to the project. As well as the app they’ve laid-out this book. No other vendor has shown such courage or leadership.
The authors of this book have all given up their time and expertise freely to contribute.
Thank-you Matt Anderson; Stella Bayles; Michael Blowers; Stuart Bruce; Scott Guthrie; Sarah Hall; Adam Parker; Gary Preston; Andrew Ross; Andrew Smith; David Sawyer; Kalli Soteriou; Dan Tyte; Max Tatton-Brown; Ben Verinder; Angharad Welsh; and Ross Wigham.
You’ll meet them all as you read through the book, and I highly recommend that you seek them all out on Twitter.
Margaret Clow worked with me to knock the book into shape. Andrew Smith, Adam Parker, Sarah Hall and Sarah Pinch have given me helpful nudges along the way.
Gary Preston and Stella Bayles from CoverageBook.com have been strong advocates alongside the social teams headed by Gemma Griffiths and Dan Tyte at the CIPR; and Danny Whatmough at the PRCA.

Communities can be magical things.

** On a personal note I have read a couple of the guides and they are really helpful. Simple things like Google predict can fashion keyword use around issues, while Hootsuite is a genuine help to managing multi-channel social output.

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