As the new addition to the Twelve team, I have now passed the three month milestone and I am happy to announce that they wish to keep me! So here I am, taking up the mantel of the Digital Prefect!
Having spent the last 6 months previously as a one-man-band, all-singing all-dancing (even if I do say so myself) PR machine working for a road safety charity (a glamorous life, I know!), it can be a lonely path! So it is extremely nice to go into our glowing orange office and see other friendly faces, when beating off the Monday blues.
As well as getting into the swing of things in the office, I’ve also recently passed my CIPR Advanced Certificate. On the whole, the certificate has been a useful exercise to a) give me a solid grounding PR-wise and b) confirmed what I always suspected, that there really is no set way of doing things in PR. Ultimately, that is what always drew me to the industry – it’s innovative and on the go.
The CIPR course could perhaps have done with a little less emphasis on the theory and perhaps covered a few more practical elements, but it has stood me in good stead for life in an agency. I would certainly recommend to any fledgling PR bunny or bucks to get themselves some ‘official’ training from either PR body, CIPR or PRCA, it’s not only good for getting the basic skills but also for getting yourself established in the industry – once you join, you have the club pass, giving you instant access to one of the best PR networks on the planet (just ask Bernays!)
A recent study has found that many people regret the things that they post on social network sites:
“Internet users were warned over the dangers of pressing the “send” button in haste as research suggested that millions of people have posted comments and messages online which they later wished they had not.” (Source: Daily Telegraph)
The study really focused on personal use of social networking, but the lessons should apply to business approaches to social media as well.
(Source: Daily Telegraph)
Social media gives you a voice to talk to a wider audience about subjects that you are passionate about and demonstrate your experitise, but it can also be easy to hide behind your digital voice and make rash / unresearched claims that you wouldn’t make in the real world.
So, whilst I would always encourage you to use online platforms to be honest and share your personal views – do think before you type and make sure that the message you are putting out there is one you are happy to live with; both for yourself and for your company. Your online thoughts and feelings can live forever, make sure they are ones worth sharing!
I have regularly extolled the virtues of blogging for business; particularly as an individual blogging to build up a profile for yourself as an expert within your field. But blogging is daunting for many because of the time required to research, write, edit and manage a blog.
There is one particular blogging platform that makes the role of blogging shorter, sharper and slightly easier. Tumblr. I mentioned it in my previous entry because none other the Barack Obama has started using the site but I thought it might be helpful to extol the virtues of Tumblr for the person on the street.
Tumblr has been described by the Daily Telegraph as “the smart thing to be doing online these days [tumblelogging], which is to weblogs what text messages are to email – short, to the point and direct.”
A tumblelog does not require reams and reams of text, many people use it to just share images / videos / ‘finds’ on the internet but the content expectation not quite the same as a traditional blog so it is perfect for your CEO that wants to share quick bullet points of lessons learnt from a recent conference, or to post pictures of an event.
Tumblr is a mix between a blog and a social network (with more characters available than Twitter – but only when you need them). I definitely encourage you to give it a go whether you want to create a personal blog for yourself with business objectives, or a unique and funky blog for your company.
Let me know how you get on!
Andrew Robson, who is currently completing an internship with us here at Twelve PR, talks about the benefits of social media for recruitment purposes:
The UKis growing ever more connected with 77% of homes now having internet access and 27% of adults able to access internet on the move through their smartphone. Indeed the average Brit now spends ten hours a day connected to the Internet. We know the internet is inescapable and that its force in society cannot be underestimated. For the first time, businesses are finding ways to act on this knowledge and boost their bottom line. Where once social media was a realm for well, socialising, it is now a powerful business tool.
Recruiting is one industry receiving a helping hand through social media. Companies now use Twitter in growing numbers to post job vacancies and those listed with the same hashtag are grouped together for easy searching.
The emergence of “Apply through Linkedin” negates the need for jobseekers to manually upload their CV for each application and the process appears more straightforward. To the same extent that we as users never switch off, we are relying on businesses to stay switched on and guard not only our social lives, but also our business and economic interests.
Mobile access through apps also helps us maintain these links. The first apps helped (or hindered?) us socially, now they are moving into all other aspects of our lives as businesses join the smart phone revolution. Through the release of an app a company can reach out to new groups of people and display both fun and condensed content.
Thanks Andrew. So are any of you relying more heavily on social media to aid the recruitment process? Which routes do you find most successful – Twitter, LinkedIn, apps – or perhaps another social media site?
There have been lots of changes afoot with our most loved social networks recently so here is a quick summary of some of these, and how they might affect you as a user:
Facebook seems to be developing at a rate of knots at the moment, with several changes occurring, some more significant than others. But most recently:
– The Facebook toolbar (which appears across the top of your Facebook news feed) has become locked, so that it continues to appear when you scroll down the page – whether you are on your personal profile or your Facebook business page. The benefits? Well it is easier navigation of course….but it is a feature already used by Twitter.
– The Facebook subscribe button was launched this week, which allows users to follow the public updates of others, regardless of whether they are facebook ‘friends’ with them. This can mean a whole host of things, for the celebs amongst us (oh wait, that’s not me really) it can mean that rather than having a personal profile and a fan page, you can have both and just chose which of your updates are public and which are private. But it could also be a great feature for the average Joe on the street, such as teachers, for example. Mashable describes it far more succinctly than I could: “Users can subscribe to others without enabling others to subscribe to them. This means teachers can allow their students to follow their public updates about school and classes without actually friending them (and accessing more personal information). That way, students can continue to update friends about their lives without worrying what might pop up in their teachers’ News Feeds.” Useful, huh? A bit like Twitter (noticing a pattern here) but going that stage further because you can choose for some of your updates to be private whilst others are public for all those that may follow you to consume….
Twitter has also made some interesting advancements:
– Twitter announced that it is now available in five additional languages (making the total 17). The additional languages are simplified and traditional Chinese, Hindi, Tagalog and Malay. This might not be a move that effects all of you, but is a necessary one none-the-less….[worth noting that Facebook is available in 70 languages, so Twitter still has a way to go].
– A new analytics package has been launched by Twitter to help users understand “How much of their content is being shared on Twitter, how much traffic Twitter is sending their way and how well Tweet Buttons are performing.” I have yet to try out the analytics but this could be a great tool for agencies and in-house PRs that need to provide statistics on their social media activities, watch this space….
Google + has introduced a map sharing feature that allows you to share directions (and other information) from Google maps, though your Google + accounts – potentially useful for businesses with difficult to find offices…
These are of course just a few of the changes happening, but it is great to see that the big players are not resting on their laurels and continue to develop and improve. That said, it does feel a little like Facebook and Twitter are in a bit of a war to catch-up and outdo each other, whereas it feels slightly like Google + is actually breaking new ground…..(and let’s not forget that David Cameron, Ed Milliband and Nick Clegg have all ventured into the Google + world).
Do you agree? Or do you feel that Twitter and Facebook are still streets ahead?