Grace Lavigne

    • Member Type(s): Content Publisher
      Media - Print Journalist
      Media - Web-only/Blogger
      Media - Other
    • Title:Reporter
    • Organization:American Metal Market
    • Area of Expertise:Writing, Editing, Social Media

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    #ConnectChat Recap: Open Social Collaboration for PR Pros

    Wednesday, August 29, 2012, 3:43 PM [#ConnectChat]
    0 (0 Ratings)

    Every other week on Tuesdays from 3-4:30 p.m. EDT, ProfNet editors interview one professional to jumpstart dialogue about an industry topic. You can follow the conversation by checking out the #ConnectChat hashtag on Twitter. If you're interested in being a featured guest, email me at


    In this week's #ConnectChat on Tuesday, Aug. 28, we featured PR and social media expert Sarah Evans (@prsarahevans) who discussed "Open Social Collaboration for PR Pros." The chat featured information on this innovative Web-based browser platform that helps professionals and non-professionals set goals, streamline tasks, share information and connect with others -- with specific tips for PR and media professionals.

    Sarah is the chief evangelist at Tracky, an open social collaboration platform, and founder and owner of Sevens Strategy, a new media consultancy. She's a self-described "social media freak" who initiated and moderates #journchattrack@, a weekly discussion between PR professionals, journalists and bloggers.


    @ProfNet: Welcome to #ConnectChat! This is Grace Lavigne, taking over @ProfNet for our chat today with Sarah Evans (@prsarahevans).

    ProfNet: Please feel free to jump in with questions and comments. And remember to include the #ConnectChat hashtag so we can all see your input.

    ProfNet: Today, Sarah will discuss how open social collaboration helps PR pros set goals, accomplish tasks and connect with others.


    @CKomisarjevsky: Good afternoon. Can you start by defining "open social collaboration" for all of us?

    Evans: Open social collaboration is a new way of working with others. It gives you the ability to both work privately and publicly. Collaboration allows us all to get more done without actually working more, just working better with others.

    Evans: We need to continue the insanity that is email. It's a bottleneck. Tools and platforms exist so we can communicate better.


    @CKomisarjevsky: Thank you, Sarah. Can you give us some examples to make it practical?

    Evans: Great example of open social collaboration in action. #VegasTech is planning a DJ battle:

    Evans: Because it's "open," it's now searchable and anyone can join in or see our progress.

    Evans: We share the track on a big screen during IRL planning sessions:


    @CKomisarjevsky: Sounds like a global jam session -- not for music but for ideas. How does one know when there is one going on so they can join?

    Evans: I love that. Anyone can have an open group, so it's up to them to promote.

    Evans: We also collaborate privately and have the option to make things public (via social) when the time is right.


    ProfNet: What are the advantages of open social collaboration for PR pros specifically?

    Evans: 1) Save time managing resources. 2) Increase efficiency to garner media attention. 3) Decrease the number of emails and overcommunication.

    Evans: If you're always checking email, social networks, etc. -- you're not productive. If you're not productive, you can't do your best work.

    Evans: Use open social collaboration for: managing clients, producing events, public speaking opportunities, working with media, etc.

    Evans: Here's an example of how @lisabuyer did this at #SES:


    @CKomisarjevsky: I presume this is a download or an app. How do you access it?

    Evans: It's all browser based (along with mobile-browser functionality and iOS app).


    ProfNet: How does open social collaboration increase productivity and efficiency?

    Evans: It takes the "email" (read: reduce human error) out of the equation. You still use email, but for what it was meant to do.

    Evans: Example: If you're working on a document that will be heavily edited, collaboration platforms should let you do real-time edits. You can reduce the "hey, what version is this?" syndrome or "I can't find that email" and just work.

    Evans: Since implementing open social collaboration in my life, I've seen a decrease in team email and produce better work.

    Evans: Here's an example of how @lisabuyer did this at #SES:

    @lisabuyer: Love and live by example! :) RT @prsarahevans: Here's an example of how @lisabuyer did this at #SES:


    ProfNet: Does open social collaboration save money?

    Evans: It can, but it depends on: 1) what platform you use, 2) how you use it, 3) whether you're ready to start new habits.

    Evans: Time is a valuable commodity. That's the place I see it influencing the most.

    @CKomisarjevsky: Sounds like an interesting way for teams separated by geography and time zones to brainstorm. Set a time and join in.


    ProfNet: How does open social collaboration build community?

    Evans: That's a good one. It's not "community" in the "I do it on Twitter" sense, but through more meaningful interactions.

    Evans: The best way to become an expert is to get results. When you're using social collaboration, you can see what everyone is working on and who is a "doer."

    @CKomisarjevsky: You should suggest this to the Romneys so that all seven of them -- the whole family -- can collaborate on his speech at the same time.

    @darrenhgraves: #socialstalker RT @prsarahevans: When you're using social collaboration you can see what everyone is working on and who is a "doer."


    @PragatiVerma: Can you give any examples/case studies of those who saved money?

    Evans: Here's a healthcare example:

    Evans: And another from Microsoft:

    @PragatiVerma: Thanks. It's much easier to relate with an example.


    ProfNet: Can journalists use open social collaboration platforms too?

    Evans: Journalists are perfect candidates for open social collaboration (bloggers, too).

    Evans: Using the right platform may allow newsrooms to streamline the editorial process and work better virtually. If you can both collaborate behind the scenes and use the same platform to push content to web and social sites, it's a win.


    ProfNet: What sort of projects would a PR pro use open social collaboration platforms for?

    Evans: Honestly, PR pros can implement a culture of social collaboration on *any* project.

    @IanBragg: #Truth. RT @prsarahevans: Honestly, PR pros can implement a culture of social collaboration on *any* project.

    @kimija: Agreed. RT @prsarahevans: Honestly, PR pros can implement a culture of social collaboration on *any* project.

    Evans: Let's look at the press release. The process may include multiple people to write/edit/review, approval process, client review. If you use a social collaboration platform, you can do all of the edits, pre-work etc., and bring the client in when ready. If a client is comfortable using open social collaboration, a platform should allow u to communicate via email.

    @Derek_Schroeder: Worth the time RT @prsarahevans: The process may include multiple people to write/edit/review, approval process, client review.


    ProfNet: What are the advantages of private vs. public sharing? How would those features be used?

    Evans: Transparency is the new marketing.

    @mattkoyak: Well said! RT @prsarahevans: Transparency is the new marketing.

    @RetroBakery: Pure truth. RT @prsarahevans: Transparency is the new marketing.

    @jennifergosse: Yes, ma'am! RT @prsarahevans: Transparency is the new marketing.

    Evans: What better way to "be" transparent than by putting your work out there (when appropriate)?

    Evans: If you can collaborate privately and publicly, as needed, from within the same platform you can do more, better.


    ProfNet: How does an open social collaboration platform enhance networking abilities?

    Evans: Business cards are hit or miss, unfortunately. If you're at an event and give/receive business cards, you can: 1) lose them, 2) forget them, 3) put your gum in them.

    Evans: Instead of emailing them for the sake of emailing, you could have a pre-set collaboration project and begin working.


    @CKomisarjevsky: How about speechwriting with collaborators to get thoughtful input? Any examples?

    Evans: Our team uses social collaboration for every single blog post, media interview, speech and presentation we do.

    Evans: Here are some tips on how to use social collaboration for public speaking opportunities:

    @PragatiVerma: It should work for non-writing projects too like organizing a press conference.

    Evans: @PragatiVerma Yes. And you can preload press-kit materials, social assets, etc. -- even answer questions real-time.


    @Derek_Schroeder: Are business cards necessary for in-person networking events?

    Evans: I could be in the minority, but I'd rather get your email and mobile during a convo and text/email right then.


    ProfNet: Are there any drawbacks of open social collaboration?

    Evans: The learning curve and habit change are the two biggest drawbacks. No matter what platform you use, it's new/different.

    Evans: Social collaboration platforms aren't "plug and play." You'll likely need to invest time to learn how to use it.

    Evans: Get out of "this is how it's always been done."


    ProfNet: Where can a PR pro go for more information about open social collaboration platforms?

    Evans: I am absolutely biased on this question. I work with @Tracky and 100 percent recommend them. We have an amazing team available to answer any/all questions and just about any scenario. Email:

    Evans: Here's a video that might help. :)

    @CKomisarjevsky: Thanks for an interesting chat about an important new way of collaborating!


    ProfNet: What new features or changes do you expect for open social collaboration platforms in the future?

    Evans: I'd like to believe they'll become more intuitive for the user, more widely adopted and "power" more of our content.


    ProfNet: How does the continuing emergence of mobile devices affect open social collaboration?

    Evans: Think mobile first. If people can't do what they need to via mobile, they'll find workarounds. Social collaboration should be integrated.


    ProfNet: Thanks for the great advice Sarah! What are you currently working on?

    Evans: I'm having a lot of fun with passion project over at @sarahsfaves and, of course, evangelizing for @tracky and loving #Vegastech!


    ProfNet: What makes @tracky different from the competition (e.g., Google, Twitter or Basecamp)?

    Evans: A few differentiators: it was built as open social collaboration, not trying to take an old product and fit "definition."


    ProfNet: Does anyone have any final questions or comments?

    @DavickaTC2: Great insight for PR pros on open social collaboration. I learned a lot about utilizing various platforms.

    @kimija: Thank you! @prsarahevans I RT'd you so much during #ConnectChat today because you brought out really great points. Thanks for sharing.

    ProfNet: Thanks everyone! That's a wrap! Thanks to all for the great participation in #ConnectChat today. Hope everyone found it informative!


    ProfNet, a service of PR Newswire, has helped journalists and experts connect since 1992. Writers can search the ProfNet Connect database of more than 50,000 profiles; send a ProfNet query by email to thousands of subscribers around the globe; or get timely experts and story ideas by email.

    Upcoming #ConnectChat: Open Social Collaboration for PR Pros

    Thursday, August 23, 2012, 4:12 PM [#ConnectChat]
    0 (0 Ratings)

    On Tuesday, Aug. 28, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. EDT, seasoned PR professional Sarah Evans will discuss open social collaboration, an innovative approach that helps professionals, non-professionals, businesses and clients set goals and accomplish tasks together via online project management. She'll discuss how PR pros can take advantage of open social collaboration to streamline tasks, share information and connect with others.

    To join the chat, just follow the #ConnectChat hashtag to view all updates from @prsarahevans, @ProfNet and the rest of the chat participants. We'll kick off the chat with a few questions for Evans just to get the conversation going, but feel free to ask questions or add comments at any time.

    If you do not have a Twitter account, or will not be able to participate in the chat, you can find a recap on ProfNet Connect the following day (Aug. 28).

    View past #ConnectChat recaps


    About Sarah Evans

    Sarah Evans is the chief evangelist at Tracky, an open social collaboration platform, and owner of Sevans Strategy, a new media consultancy.

    It's her personal mission to engage and employ the use of emerging technologies in all communication that connects her with a rapidly growing base of more than 120,000 people.

    A self-described "social media freak," Evans initiated and moderates #journchat, the weekly live chat between PR professionals, journalists and bloggers on Twitter.

    She shares her social media and tech favorites on Sarah's Faves, as well as a daily resource for PR professionals called #Commentz.

    Evans previously worked with a local crisis center to raise more than $161,000 via social media and is a team member of the Guinness Book World Records holding #beatcancer.

    She can be seen in the February 2010 edition of Vanity Fair's "America's Tweethearts," Forbes' "14 Power Women to Follow on Twitter" and Entrepreneur's "Top 10 Hot Startups of 2010."


    ProfNet, a service of PR Newswire, has helped journalists and experts connect since 1992. Writers can search the ProfNet Connect database of more than 50,000 profiles; send a ProfNet query by email to thousands of subscribers around the globe; or get timely experts and story ideas by email.

    #ConnectChat Recap: How Social Media Is Changing PR

    Wednesday, July 18, 2012, 4:50 PM [#ConnectChat]
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    Every other week on Tuesdays from 3-4:30 p.m. EDT, ProfNet editors interview one professional to jumpstart dialogue about an industry topic. You can follow the conversation by checking out the #ConnectChat hashtag on Twitter. If you're interested in being a featured guest, email me at


    In this week's #ConnectChat on Tuesday, July 17, we featured PR, marketing and social media expert Deirdre Breakenridge (@dbreakenridge) who discussed "How Social Media Is Changing PR." The chat featured information on new skills and practices PR professionals need to master, what it means to be a hybrid PR pro, the role of social media in a company, where the PR industry is headed, and more.

    Deirdre is the founder and CEO of Pure Performance Communications (@PurePerComm). She speaks nationally and internationally on PR, marketing and social media topics; and is the author of five Financial Times books, including her most recent, "Social Media and Public Relations: Eight New Practices for the PR Professional." She also co-hosts her own chat, #PRStudChat (or @PRStudChat), which is a conversation between PR students, educators and professionals.


    @ProfNet: Welcome to #ConnectChat! This is Grace Lavigne, taking over @ProfNet for our chat today with Deirdre Breakenridge (@dbreakenridge).

    ProfNet: Feel free to jump in with questions and comments. Just remember to include the #ConnectChat hashtag so we can all see your input!

    ProfNet: Today, Deirdre will discuss how social media is changing the PR industry, and how we can shift our mindsets accordingly.

    @dbreakenridge Hi everyone, thanks for joining us today for #ConnectChat!


    ProfNet: Q1. With the rise of social media, what new skills do PR pros need to master?

    Breakenridge: 1) New skills include competency in information technologies. We have to be PR tech testers. 2) PR pros must be able to start a dialogue and build relationships through new channels. 3) It's great to see PR embracing video, SEO, website analytics, monitoring technology, CMS, etc. 4) PR must strategize to connect directly with stakeholders, especially our customers.

    @jgombita Google Analytics (and some SEO).

    Breakenridge: Yes! RT @jgombita: Google Analytics (and some SEO).

    @comminternships: PR students, take note, you need to understand these to get a job today: RT @jgombita: Google Analytics (and some SEO).

    @jgombita: I can't believe how many people in PR/marketing diss Google+, given how significant is search for modern-day PR.

    Breakenridge: @jgombita: Yes, you're right. Google+ is good for search.

    @jgombita: Not JUST search, but other elements of PR. @marktraphagen agreed to do a guest post on @prconversations about it.

    Breakenridge: Yes, Google+ is a great way to engage (broadcast video hangouts).

    @AllthingsIC: How to translate requirements for conversation into achievable outcomes. Keeping updated and cutting through "noise."

    @CourtneyGHuber: @AllthingsIC Agree re: keeping up. There's so much content/news out there and much to learn in my own industry for which I do PR.

    Breakenridge: @AllthingsIC Yes, it's tough to rise above the noise!

    @AllthingsIC: Remembering the "basics" too -- e.g., writing, grammar and ability to create and maintain good conversations and relationships.

    @OregonPRGirl: So important! "Remembering basics: writing, grammar, ability to create/maintain good relationships" via @AllthingsIC

    Breakenridge: A must! RT @OregonPRGirl: So important! "Remembering basics: writing, grammar, ability to create/maintain good relationships."

    @jgombita: @AllthingsIC: Agreed. But not corporatease or speechifying.

    @AllthingsIC: @jgombita: Heaven forbid. Agreed, key is jargon-free, plain English. Alienating people through language = less than ideal!

    @higginbomb: Data analysis is so important to PR in social media. So much new data, so few rules on what to do with it...

    Breakenridge: @higginbomb Agreed!

    @BlancandOtus: Getting across the main point of the news in 140 characters or less!

    @optimeUSA: Not only implementing social media, but doing so with tactics and strategies that interact and reach the right audience!


    @comminternships: I constantly encounter students who want to major in PR, but don't want to take writing classes. What do you tell them?

    Breakenridge: @comminternships Writing is so important. It's one of our core competencies. Good writing takes practice.

    @comminternships: That's what I tell students, but they don't listen! And social media make writing even more important!


    @rsmithing: What's your advice for convincing reticent clients to consider social media?

    Breakenridge: @rsmithing They should realize their customers might be there, and their competitors too!

    @OGPR: Show them what their competitors are doing. Most likely they are there already.


    ProfNet: Q2. What does it mean to be a hybrid PR professional?

    Breakenridge: 1) Moving the best of traditional forward, integrated with digital/social communications. 2) Working cross functionally with other areas of marketing, and moving outside of the PR silo. 3) PR pros are learning and applying other areas of marketing into their practices. 4) Working more closely with marketing, Web, IT, sales, etc. 5) Customer service and PR work very closely together as a result of social media.

    @jgombita: Don't you need to define what the elements are of your particular "hybrid"?

    @BlancandOtus: @dbreakenridge We agree -- working with other areas of marketing is crucial to make sure you maintain your edge as a PR pro.

    @jgombita: @dbreakenridge major OUCH. Do you see public relations as only being a part of marketing?!

    Breakenridge: @jgombita Public relations integrates throughout the company. Involved in sales, HR, customer service too!

    @jgombita: @dbreakenridge per @commAMMO, "All marketing is communication, but not all communication is marketing." Same with PR. #ConnectChat

    Breakenridge: @jgombita True!

    @AllthingsIC: Being a hybrid pro means the ability to adapt and evolve. Keeping audience firmly in mind and making smart decisions.

    @comminternships: @AllthingsIC Adaptability is key in any communications career today.

    Breakenridge: @AllthingsIC @comminternships Yes, must be very flexible and be able to adapt to a global communication environment.


    @joseph_davis: Should the emphasis be less about SM channels, and more about the content, delivery, engagement?

    Breakenridge: Have to make sure your audience congregates in a community, and then it's all about the engagement.

    @joseph_davis: @dbreakenridge Agreed.

    @optimeUSA: It's not enough to be in the community, if you don't connect and get involved! Social = engagement!

    @comminternships: So true. Many businesses thing social media is one-way communication. It's not.

    @AllthingsIC: @joseph_davis Yes always -- first defining what it is you're trying to achieve, then choosing the channel, social media or otherwise.

    Breakenridge: @AllthingsIC @joseph_davis Know why!

    @AllthingsIC: @dbreakenridge Absolutely, "why" is crucial.

    @joseph_davis: @AllthingsIC I think those steps are often forgotten. Many see the channels first, without defining goals.

    @AllthingsIC: Absolutely, easy to get blinded by shiny, whizzy channels and forget the core competencies!


    ProfNet: Q3. What are some new PR roles or practices?

    Breakenridge: 1) The Internal Collaboration Generator knows good communication starts on the inside with sharing technology. 2) The Pre-Crisis Doctor who plans for crisis through a new approach, process and recovery. 3) The Relationship Analyzer takes relationships to deeper levels through technology and visualization.

    @AllthingsIC: Social media creates many opportunities -- job titles vary, but essence is same -- creating and connecting with employees/customers.

    @rsmithing: @AllthingsIC Yes! @BrianSolis even says now is a PR renaissance in a @dbreakenridge foreword:

    @jgombita: I think the most POWERFUL (and underused) is creating communities of interest. Note: don't mean blog-commenting communities.

    Breakenridge: @jgombita Yes, communities where you can move past just comments and begin idea sharing/crowdsourcing.

    @jgombita: @dbreakenridge Meant more common background, but different employers. Like the "engineering" mindset. Give them a space.

    @AllthingsIC: @jgombita Agreed, and important that they're "of interest" and enable you to go beyond purely commenting. Ooh, thanks for @cjoh info.

    @jgombita: @AllthingsIC Have you read @cjoh's The Information Diet (which inspired my Nutrition Byte)? Be careful where you spend time.

    @ccduong: The social media guru: not actually putting info out, but rather teaching and getting internal employees up to speed.

    @SuperDU: Lots of old roles, but with new tools. Monitoring customer sentiment, for instance. Ombudsman is old title, but with new tools.

    Breakenridge: @SuperDU Sometimes hard to get move past old rules to learn, embrace and implement new tools.

    @SuperDU: @dbreakenridge: True... requires internal champion to get the "old school" leadership to better understand benefits of new tools.

    @AllthingsIC: I think a "new practice" is to keep up! Now more than ever, PR/comms pros need to be aware of what's around and help educate. Brian Solis' Conversation Prism captures this really well, I blogged about this last week:

    Breakenridge: @AllthingsIC I'll never retire the prism! Although it's constantly changing. I love the Conversation Prism! Discussed this in my book with Brian. Greatest infographic ever!

    @AllthingsIC: I love the prism, used it for about three years now -- mainly to demo the breadth and variety of what's around.

    @higginbomb: How about evangelism?

    Breakenridge @higginbomb Yes, there is the Chief Evangelist role.

    @BlancandOtus: We are definitely seeing a request for social media experts; also experts trying to solve the ongoing metric issue with PR.

    @jgombita: @BlancandOtus: Hope you're hiring senior-level people. Knowing how to use the tools is not the same thing as being PR/biz savvy.

    @BlancandOtus: @jgombita Completely agree! Having both is key to successful communications.

    @SpectorPR: PR industry is developing social media measurement standards to meet this demand

    @jgombita: @SpectorPR @BlancandOtus Interesting that the standards are coming "out" of Europe, n'est-ce pas?


    ProfNet: Q4. Which new practices are the most challenging for communications professionals?

    Breakenridge: Being a technology tester because you have to constantly test new apps, resources and platforms.

    @SuperDU: @dbreakenridge It's tiring!

    @abbyatsmith: Learning the etiquette of pitching/finding sources via social media.

    Breakenridge: It's so important to understand and use technology the way your stakeholders do.

    @SuperDU: THE hardest new practice is participating in real dialogue without tons of legal and management approvals!

    Breakenridge: Becoming a Master of the Metrics requires a new understanding of metrics tracked over time. With measurement, you have a wide variety of metrics and you must know how to track them back to your goals.

    @SuperDU: @dbreakenridge I actually think new media provides more and better metrics than PR pros could use before!

    @rsmithing: @SuperDU Absolutely. Where's Google Analytics or Facebook "likes" on press releases, direct mail and print ads of yore?

    Breakenridge: @SuperDU Yes, there are really good metrics. It's just a matter of knowing which the executives want to see.

    @SuperDU: @dbreakenridge What I'm seeing is we have to provide the old metrics AND new ones = more work.

    @INBlaqkInk: @dbreakenridge @SuperDU Agree with both. It's also about presenting in a format that's understandable and useable for their needs.

    @AllthingsIC: @dbreakenridge Aha the return on investment (ROI) position! Agreed, knowing what execs want to see = very important.

    Breakenridge: @AllthingsIC The vanity numbers won't get us very far.

    @jgombita: The amount of transparency you should have about your company -- and what areas? Financial? Innovation?

    @AllthingsIC: Comms pros know "selling-in" within orgs = crucial. Social media provides many opportunities, and talking language of the business is vital.

    @higginbomb: Don't forget "old" practices. So many dive in to new stuff and forget effectiveness of face-to-face.

    Breakenridge: @higginbomb We must take the best of traditional forward!

    @AllthingsIC: Comms pros need to be brave and "retire" old channels. If you introduce a new one, reassess what can go.

    @MichWalkden: @AllthingsIC Good advice. Just wish it was easier to convince the "brains trust" that came up w the format in the first place.

    @AllthingsIC: @MichWalkden Ha, like that "brains trust" -- indeed!

    @comminternships: And keep in mind that today, "old" channels may only be a few years old.

    @AllthingsIC: @comminternships: That's true, better to admit when a channel isn't working than keep banging that drum, regardless of its age.


    @comminternships: Do you see the messages of PR professionals getting lost today amid the urgency to keep up with tech changes?

    @SuperDU: PR messages shouldn't get lost with new tech… should actually become more targeted.

    Breakenridge: @SuperDU I agree.

    Breakenridge: If we master the tech changes, the messages will be more meaningful -- greater impact to our stakeholders.


    @KreeBeau: What are your thoughts on Google+ Hangouts/chats -- is there an demographic they best suit?

    @comminternships: Google employees. LOL.

    Breakenridge: LOL! That's pretty funny about Google employees :)

    Breakenridge: That's a really interesting question. Are you thinking younger because of musicians who broadcast in Hangouts live?

    Breakenridge: I've used them for closed Hangouts, but willing to try the open forum.

    @KreeBeau: Actually for business professionals. I have not seen them be successful so wanted to see if you had any tips #connectchat

    Breakenridge: I think the verdict is still out. I hear both the positive and negative. Negative mostly with technology.

    @jgombita: Think they are FABULOUS for international groups. @nealschaffer held one "in" Japan this week, for example.

    @KreeBeau: Great to hear! I will take a look at what he did. Is there an industry you see Google+ chats working for?

    @jgombita: I suspect Google Hangouts will be more effective for B2B companies, charities, governments, etc., over B2C.

    Breakenridge: I know a hospital group that was holding learning sessions in Google+ Hangouts.


    ProfNet: Q5. How can social media help you become a more strategic communications professional?

    Breakenridge: Social media gives incredible intelligence, and when filtered, you can plan more strategically.

    @JochemKoole: @dbreakenridge Definitely. However, you'll need both tools, and people to manage that.

    Breakenridge: @JochemKoole Yes!

    Breakenridge: With social media you can be better prepared for negative and crises.

    @higginbomb: @dbreakenridge And you can react quicker.

    @SuperDU: With social media, we're also more exposed to negatives and crises (so we HAVE to be more prepared). Goes both ways.

    @AllthingsIC: Agree you're better prepared for negative and crises. Then also able to respond in real time with employees and customers.

    Breakenridge: @AllthingsIC Response is immediate -- it's what the public expects and they want to be involved.

    @JochemKoole: @dbreakenridge You'll need both the tools and your crisis management on board. Reaction speed is of great importance.

    @AllthingsIC: @O2 in the UK were great example of a good response to crisis last week, turning into PR win:

    @SuperDU: Creating long-term relationship with audience via social media is very strategic (removing media middlemen).

    @MichWalkden: @SuperDU Still can't neglect media relationships -- may need them one day.

    @SuperDU: @MichWalkden: Agreed. It just means we're doing double duty with traditional and new media right now!

    @BlancandOtus: Social media helps you gain visibility into your target audience/stakeholders; helps to increase effectiveness of your communications.

    @AllthingsIC: Social media helps you be more strategic, as you're able to have rounded view of the world -- makes it smaller by connecting you.

    Breakenridge: @AllthingsIC Great!

    @isalara: Social media helps to find reporters on our beat who aren't in our press lists, and to improve summarizing and pitching skills.

    Breakenridge: @isalara Good point

    @OregonPRGirl: Social media helps communicators target messages better and more precisely, and with fewer words.


    @joseph_davis: Does social media make you better prepared for crisis or aid in response to crisis?

    Breakenridge: It's both. You have the intelligence and training to be prepared. Response is quicker and involves groups to help.

    @jgombita: Drives me crazy what is considered a "crisis" in social media, given what's going on in the (real) world…

    Breakenridge: @jgombita You're right. There are levels of escalation. So not everything is a crisis.

    @MichWalkden: Agreed. Sometimes it seems the social media storm creates a crisis where one didn't exist.

    @jgombita: @MichWalkden Social media storms pass really quickly; rarely true damage done to reputation.

    @MichWalkden: @jgombita Completely agree. Twitter storms in particular seem to generate negative PR because they become the story.

    Breakenridge: You can strategically engage for more valuable outcomes -- leads, sales, registration, better CS, more productivity.

    @joseph_davis: @jgombita I suppose "real world" crisis can now be interpreted through social media channels.

    @SuperDU: "Crisis by Social Media" remains real threat to corporate/personal reputation, though, which means more vigilance required.

    @jgombita: @SuperDU Keep telling people they need to examine "social media crises" into the NEXT financial quarter to see if real impact.

    Breakenridge: @jgombita Yes, you can have the big shark attack right down to those nibbles! :)

    @jgombita: @dbreakenridge: I was proud to use "minnowizing" a social media "crisis." :)

    @MichWalkden: @joseph_davis @jgombita Do you mean we are redefining what a crisis is?

    @jgombita: @MichWalkden More likely redefining the timelines.

    @SuperDU: @jgombita I guess I'm referring to real stories that gain more legs via social media than through traditional media, upping response times.

    @jgombita: @SuperDU Like @belvederevodka's (really dumb) Facebook ad?

    @MichWalkden: But how much real impact do those "flash" stories have? If they persist and permeate mainstream as well…


    @Open_Budget: I'm just curious if you would be able to suggest a good book or article about PR in relation to museums and galleries?

    Breakenridge: Hmmm... What about the PRAM (Public Relations Association of Museums)? They would be a good resource.


    ProfNet: Q6. Is social media the sole responsibility of PR? Do marketing, advertising and branding departments have a role?

    Breakenridge: Social media moves across the organization -- groups working together, with different objectives.

    @INBlaqkInk: Absolutely not. The main messaging of social media should be crafted to match the marketing goals of the organization. PR just tells a story.

    @MichWalkden: Since social media has so many purposes and so many targets, it can't be controlled by one function. But an overall policy is needed.

    @JochemKoole: Social media is not a responsibility. Everyone's responsible for using social media for their own goals (if possible).

    @SuperDU: @JochemKoole: Not everyone. Should be clearly defined roles and responsibilities about who "speaks" for organization via social media.

    @JochemKoole: @SuperDU Agreed. Everyone within our organization (@DeloitteNL) can speak about the firm. Just a few can speak for the firm.

    @abbyatsmith: While PR seems to have the most success in social media, a good advertising or marketing campaign is possible.

    Breakenridge: @abbyatsmith Yes and when those areas work together, the campaign is even better!

    @comminternships: Every single employee who has a Twitter account plays a role in the social media policy of the organization.

    @INBlaqkInk: @comminternships Don't agree. Too many messages usually results in the wrong message.

    @comminternships: @INBlaqkInk I think you missed my point. Any employee with a Twitter account can use it to stay on message or embarrass organization. It's why every organization needs to develop and enforce a social media policy for all employees.

    Breakenridge: PR works with other areas, from social governance and planning to content curation and monitoring of programs.

    Breakenridge: @jgombita: I think PR should spearhead/guide, but not own social media. I think PR should be part of a core team of social media strategists/visionaries in an organization.

    @SuperDU: In the end, doesn't there need to be one function that is accountable for an organization's social media presence?

    Breakenridge: Yes and right now a lot falls on the CMO's shoulders.

    @curtbizelli: Playing publicist and CMO -- knowledge of both.

    @MichWalkden: Brand management yes, but what about social media for customer service?

    @jgombita: @MichWalkden Not huge on it. Fave post @conversationage's Fair Not Special post:

    @MichWalkden: I meant, should PR have the lead in social media when applied to customer service?

    @jgombita: @MichWalkden I would say no. I don't actually believe customer service should "report" to PR.

    @curtbizelli: Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that viral marketing social media is a form of publicity.

    Breakenridge: Working with other groups doesn't mean we lose our core purpose; we have just expanded our opportunity!

    @AllthingsIC: @comminternships Any employee could embarrass an organization, but Twitter only one of the ways that's possible.

    @SuperDU: @comminternships Twitter and other social media are just more visible ways employees can embarrass organization.

    @comminternships: @AllthingsIC True. But it's also one of the most visible ways.

    @AllthingsIC: @comminternships Definitely visible, if people want to be negative they'll always find a way to have their voice heard.

    @curtbizelli: @tweetchatbot I believe you can make something go viral. It takes similar creative strategy as used in PR.

    @SuperDU: @curtbizelli: The goal often is to make something go viral, but it's not as easy as some in leadership roles think!

    @MichWalkden: @SuperDU @dbreakenridge I doubt that's really possible without creating social media police, which goes against the point of interaction.

    @SuperDU: @MichWalkden @dbreakenridge If organization has marketing/reputation goals/campaigns related to social media, someone has to own them.

    @OGPR: @SuperDU @curbizelli So true. You never know if something will end up going viral. It's hard to predict.

    @MichWalkden: @SuperDU @dbreakenridge Completely agree. Strategy/goals have to be owned for consistency, but no one can completely govern social media.


    ProfNet: Q7. How do you use metrics to interpret success? How do you drive metrics?

    @Edu_Qui: PR industry is developing social media measurement standards to meet this demand

    Breakenridge: First must have objectives and know what you're trying to achieve! Select the metrics that track back to your objectives/goals. It's important to know what you're measuring: leads, sales, registration, awareness (buzz), community growth, etc. Selecting the right metrics for your executives is critical. They are less concerned with follower counts and retweets.

    @joseph_davis: Excellent point about selecting the right metrics. Follower count and RTs can be misleading.

    @AllthingsIC: Chartered Institute of Public Relations in the UK (@CIPR_UK) ran a measurement summit recently:

    @JochemKoole: @dbreakenridge And "layers" of metrics/goals. Followers = reach, Interactions = engagement, Contact = sale.

    @curtbizelli: What do you feel are the proper metrics?

    @abbyatsmith: @dbreakenridge @curtbizelli I'm curious as well, I can measure my trade PR success, but still in the dark with social media.

    @SuperDU: For @DavenportU, we measure audience engagement -- leading (we hope) to student retention.

    Breakenridge: @SuperDU So important!

    @curtbizelli: Yes and influence is very important. I believe measuring influence of brand advocates is far more important than follower count.

    Breakenridge: @curtbizelli Influence definitely plays a role!

    @JochemKoole: The most challenging thing about social media is that you are no longer in control. Accept it and roll with it.

    @SuperDU: @JochemKoole: Cannot control, yes. However, you can strongly influence.

    @jgombita: I'm a fan of @sheldrake's definition of "influence" and "outcomes." See @Sheldrake's The Business of Influence book!

    @curtbizelli: @jgombita I'm definitely adding it to my reading list :) Thank you for turning me on to @sheldrake's definition of influence. Sounds VERY INTERESTING!

    @AllthingsIC: I second the @sheldrake recommendation.

    @jgorbita: See @sheldrake's online glossary:


    ProfNet: How do you systematically map out audience connections?

    Breakenridge: Listening to conversations, and identify influencers driving the discussion.

    @AllthingsIC: Listen, listen, listen.

    Breakenridge: @AllthingsIC Yes, yes, yes!

    Breakenridge: Understand the culture, critical issues and passion in the community to make better connections. Use crowdsourcing, contests, and promotions for deeper engagement. PR will be entrenched in new technologies and we will educate our execs on consumer behavior.

    @abbyatsmith: @dbreakenridge Do you use any formal method for mapping these connections or is it purely a "gut" thing?

    Breakenridge: @abbyatsmith You can use MentionMapp and TouchGraph to visualize connections.

    @jgombita: When it comes to SOCIAL media, I'm really not a fan of the term "audience." I don't like it.

    @brightmatrix: @jgombita Why is that? Because it implies that they're purposefully coming 'round to listen to your every word (not always case in social media)?

    @jgombita: @brightmatrix Yeah. Like "playing to the room." I'm not here to perform. And if I amuse, it's because I'm amused myself.

    @6cSocial: "Audience" implies "broadcast" in my view... (also implies MARKETING)

    @curtbizelli: @jgombita: I use the word "audience" naturally, because I am partner in two media outlets.

    @jgombita: @curtbizelli I was having a convo with my @cbcradio journo pal last week. Said with radio it feels like people are IN THE ROOM.

    @curtbizelli: @jgombita Sorry, lol, maybe I don't understand the "in the room" concept because I'm not a host.

    @jgombita: @curtbizelli I meant radio is a medium whereby it does not sound like hosts/interview subjects are "playing to an audience."

    @curtbizelli: @jbombita It's all about audience (from the perspective of VP of media outlet, producer/director)... they are our lifeblood. Maybe that's why I'm a "broadcaster" on @klout

    @jgombita: @curtbizelli Maybe in traditional media. But I can tell you that journos who participate in social media only work well if they engage.

    @curtbizelli: @jgombita Oh no! I very much believe in engaging. Very important.

    Breakenridge: @jgombita Technically, we're not supposed to say "audience" anymore because it implies "mass." Old habits are hard to break.


    ProfNet: Q9. Where is PR headed? What's on the horizon?

    Breakenridge: 1) PR will continue to integrate with other areas and strategize cross functionally. 2) PR can look forward to interactive living rooms, touch experience, augmented reality, etc. 3) PR will gain influence by telling more meaningful stories through technology and educating others on best practices.

    @MassAvePR: Micro-agencies and honest pricing.

    @abbyatsmith: Faster story development, media connections via social media. It feels as though we're moving closer to consumers and the media, my pitching feels more organic the more I interact.

    @curtbizelli: Bigger gap between pros and amateurs.

    @comminternships: All of those need to be considered, but mobility, I think, is the dominant mode of communication for the near future.

    @isalara: Audience so fragmented, PR must use social media channels to reach niche markets, user/client feedback -- more important than ever.

    @JayOuellette: PR is viewed much more strategically today. We need to take the view of the customer and go up and be front of the line.

    @jgombita: On @prconversations, @greenbanana and I are lobbying for PR/social media to focus on the "organizational narrative" (not MSM dependent).


    ProfNet: Q10. Any PR pros you'd recommend following?

    Breakenridge: Yes, follow @SarahEvans @GiniDietrich @GeoffLiving @MisusP @PRTini @valeriesimon

    @abbyatsmith: I suppose it would be cheating if I recommended @SmithPublicity? But do I love @GalleyCat @prnewser and @PRNewswire for my news.

    @Publitek: A couple, @jangles @steveology


    ProfNet: Deirdre, what are you working on now?

    Breakenridge: Working on #PRStudChat -- July 18 at 8:30 p.m. EDT. Also doing a lot of training with respect to my book and the #8newpractices.


    Final Comments

    @SuperDU: Glad I stumbled upon #ConnectChat… great conversation with communications leaders I greatly respect! Thanks all!

    @AllthingsIC: Thanks all, interesting chat. Good to discover new people and perspectives. Thanks for hosting.

    Breakenridge: @AllthingsIC Thanks for a great chat session. Appreciate all the good insights shared.

    @rsmithing: @dbreakenridge Solid advice. Thanks also to @GnightGracie, @ProfNet, @OGPR and @AllthingsIC for an engaging #ConnectChat.

    @melvinvoskuijl: Interesting Q&As over social media via #ConnectChat.

    @BlancandOtus: Thanks for the great discussion, it's been fun!

    @comminternships: Thanks for a great #ConnectChat today. This was an outstanding topic and discussion.

    @OGPR: Great chatting with everyone!

    @SuperDU Thanks for leading #ConnectChat today Grace… perfect anecdote to a slow afternoon.

    @Called2Connect: I learned a lot from #ConnectChat. I can't wait for the next one.

    Breakenridge: Thanks everyone for the great discussion. I really enjoyed #ConnectChat!

    @dbreakenridge: Thank you @ProfNet for asking me to participate in #ConnectChat. Had a great time today! A great session with a lot of really good insight from the community.

    @ProfNet: That's a wrap! Thanks to all for the great participation in #ConnectChat today. Hope everyone found it informative!

    Upcoming #ConnectChat: How Social Media Is Changing PR

    Thursday, July 12, 2012, 12:23 PM [#ConnectChat]
    0 (0 Ratings)

    In the last decade, social media has drastically changed our business and community worlds. But how has social media changed the public relations industry specifically? What PR practices have evolved or arisen in the digital era?

    On Tuesday, July 17, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. EDT, seasoned PR professional Deirdre Breakenridge will discuss the exciting and challenging new roles of PR as a result of social media. She'll delve into how and why we need to shift our mindsets to achieve better brand communications.

    To join the chat, just follow the #ConnectChat hashtag to view all updates from @dbreakenridge, @ProfNet and the rest of the chat participants. We'll kick off the chat with a few questions for Breakenridge just to get the conversation going, but feel free to ask questions or add comments at any time.

    If you do not have a Twitter account, or will not be able to participate in the chat, you can find a recap on ProfNet Connect the following day (July 18).

    View past #ConnectChat recaps


    About Deirdre Breakenridge

    Deirdre K. Breakenridge is Chief Executive Officer at Pure Performance Communications. A veteran in PR and marketing, Breakenridge has counseled senior level executives at companies like the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Empire Today, Hershey's, JVC, Kraft and the World Bank.

    Breakenridge is the author of five Financial Times books. Her most recent book, "Social Media and Public Relations: Eight New Practices for the PR Professional," was published in May and is available in print and digital formats. Her other books include, "Putting the Public Back in Public Relations," "PR 2.0, New Media, New Tools, New Audiences," "The New PR Toolkit" and "Cyberbranding: Brand Building in the Digital Economy."

    Breakenridge speaks nationally and internationally on the topics of PR, marketing and social media communications. This year, she was the keynote speaker at The Social Conference in Amsterdam; the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Southwest District Conference in Tulsa, Okla.; and the Canadian Public Relations Society Annual Conference in Victoria, British Columbia.

    In 2011, she delivered the keynote address for the Maine Public Relations Counsel, and presented the keynote at USA Gymnastics Conference: Visa Championships. Breakenridge has also presented for BlogWorld, Social Media Congress, Public Relations Institute of Australia, Marketing Executives Networking Group, Public Relations Association of Museums and Women's Presidents Organization.

    Breakenridge is a member of PRSA and has served on the board of PRSA NJ, as well as the New Jersey Advertising Club. Top Rank named Breakenridge among the "25 Women That Rock Social Media" and Traackr recognized Breakenridge as the "No. 1 PR 2.0 Influencer in 2011."

    Breakenridge blogs about PR 2.0 strategies and is the co-founder of #PRStudChat, a dynamic Twitter discussion scheduled monthly for PR students, educators and PR pros.


    ProfNet, a service of PR Newswire, has helped journalists and experts connect since 1992. Writers can search the ProfNet Connect database of more than 50,000 profiles; send a ProfNet query by email to thousands of subscribers around the globe; or get timely experts and story ideas by email.

    #ConnectChat Recap: How to Develop an Integrated Marketing Campaign in the Digital Era

    Wednesday, June 6, 2012, 4:58 PM [#ConnectChat]
    0 (0 Ratings)

    Every other week on Tuesdays from 3-4:30 p.m. EDT, ProfNet editors interview one professional to jumpstart dialogue about an industry topic. You can follow the conversation by checking out the #ConnectChat hashtag on Twitter. If you're interested in being a featured guest, email me at

    In this week's #ConnectChat on Tuesday, June 5, we featured marketing and PR expert Gini Dietrich (@ginidietrich) who discussed "How to Develop an Integrated Marketing Campaign in the Digital Era." The chat featured information on the advantages of moving away from the "silo" model, how to incentivize employees and executives to do so, where social media belongs in an integrated marketing campaign, and more.

    Gini Dietrich is the founder and CEO of Arment Dietrich, a Chicago-based integrated marketing communications firm. She also recently co-authored a book with Geoff Livingston, published last month, called "Marketing in the Round," which discusses integrative marketing techniques in finer detail.


    @ProfNet: Welcome to #ConnectChat! This is Grace Lavigne, taking over @ProfNet for our chat today with Gini Dietrich (@ginidietrich).

    ProfNet: Feel free to jump in with questions and comments. Just remember to include the #ConnectChat hashtag so we can all see your input!

    ProfNet: Today, Gini will discuss why the traditional "silo" model (each dept. focusing on its own tasks) doesn't work in the digital era.

    @ginidietrich: Hey everyone!


    ProfNet: Gini, what do you see as the differences between advertising vs. marketing vs. branding vs. PR?

    Dietrich: We're in a strange world right now. The lines between all marketing disciplines are blurring. We look at it four ways: the first is direct to the consumer, the second is a top-down approach, the third is the groundswell and the fourth is flanking.

    Dietrich: In direct, you have trade shows, private events, telemarketing, networking events, and even social media. the groundswell is what we know as social media, WOM, brand ambassadors, etc. And flanking is advertising, guerilla marketing, event marketing, some media relations.


    @flemingsean: How should one combat resistance to a non-siloed approach in an organization that has an anti-change culture?

    Dietrich: It's so hard. It's not an easy thing to do. It's complete culture change. And people hate change. The first thing that has to happen is corner office buy-in. Then make it part of people's incentive programs.


    ProfNet: How do companies become siloed? What are the advantages of moving away from the silo model?

    Dietrich: In silos, people work independently and not for the benefit of the organization. Silos make it hard to react quickly, particularly as fast as technology is changing the way we do things. If you move away from silos, you begin to work toward a common goal and as a team. A non-siloed organization makes it very easy to react to customer's needs in today's real-time world.

    @theshepTSG: Read that in a great book :) RT @ginidietrich: If you move away from silos, you begin to work toward a common goal and as a team.

    Dietrich: @theshepTSG: Ha! I wonder which one!?!? Hm...

    @jeffespo: Silos suck

    Dietrich: LOL! Yes, they do!

    @TerryFlynn: IMHO silo-ized thinking and acting is born in business schools where future management leaders are taught in academic silos.

    Dietrich: @TerryFlynn Really great point. It's pretty indicative of all American education.

    @TerryFlynn: and Canadian business education as well.

    Dietrich: Perhaps just education overall.


    ProfNet: Are there any companies where the silo model does work?

    Dietrich: Most of America's organizations are siloed. So yes, they're able to run and even grow. But technology is changing so much more quickly than ever before it's hard to be siloed and be responsive.


    @TheModernElixir: So what do you do for your employees to incentivize working out of the silo?

    Dietrich: It depends on the employee. Some people want money while others want more time off. Know your team.


    @JimmyOrr: Best examples of organizations that have de-siloed and have seen great results?

    Dietrich: We worked with Vistage to do this. They did a really good job with it. Dell is another example. They did this in early 2000s when they consolidated their agencies.


    ProfNet: Why aren't most companies using the silo approach?

    Dietrich: It's hard to break down silos. People want to control their own budgets and their own campaigns. Lack of control is scary.

    @alanbr82: Yet everyone will say that they are great "team players."

    Dietrich: @alanbr82. Weird. I was JUST thinking about you. And yes, you're right.

    @TerryFlynn: The key to breaking down the barriers between communications disciplines is to disperse accountability and responsibility.

    Dietrich: @TerryFlynn Exactly! I could hug you for that.


    @gomezdm: Regarding getting employee buy-in, it seems like incentives wouldn't last. What about "it makes your job easier moving away from silos"?

    Dietrich: If the incentives are right, they last. You have to make sure, though, they're individualized. Otherwise it's a no-go.


    @InfinitiSol: What about a hybrid silo approach with frequent collaboration and communication between the silo groups?

    Dietrich: That's kind of what we advocate in "Marketing in the Round." Creating a team of people from every discipline.


    ProfNet: Gini, you mentioned how to convince employees, but how do you convince executives specifically to integrate marketing?

    Dietrich: Results, results, results. If you can show an executive (or client) how your efforts are tied to business goals, you win every time.

    Dietrich: It's really important to get executive buy-in. This is definitely a top-down approach.

    Dietrich: Then get them to constantly communicate the why. People want to know what's in it for them. Tell them… over and over again. You can even provide the messages, schedule the all-staff meetings, get the CEO out and about. Just make sure he or she is constantly communicating the why.

    @JimmyOrr: This is applicable to effecting any change: MT @ginidietrich "constantly communicate the why. Tell them… over and over again."

    Dietrich: @JimmyOrr: Yes. Yes it is!

    @TerryFlynn: Create communications departments that are driven and rewarded by enterprise objectives. Ensure that pro com members are convergent thinkers.

    Dietrich: @TerryFlynn Yes!


    ProfNet: So what IS in it for executives integrating marketing?

    Dietrich: What's in it for them really depends on the organization. It could be bigger bonuses or more time off. Just depends.


    ProfNet: How do you manage clients or executives who don't understand the work you do?

    Dietrich: When you get questions about the work you're doing, you're not effectively showing your results.


    @rachelcw: Some clients seem open to change, then comfortable only following old patterns. Thoughts?

    Dietrich: One of my favorites is when a client (still) asks for media impressions. Unfortunately we have to keep educating.

    @alanbr82: That kills me too. I am always preaching conversions and landing pages.

    Dietrich: Sometimes we do a hybrid -- some of the stuff they're comfortable doing and some of the new.

    @rachelcw: Exhausting process. I wonder if we need to start building in the education to billable hours.

    Dietrich: @rachelcw Ha! Isn't that the truth?! Maybe it could go under account management?

    @rachelcw: Brave new billing process!

    Dietrich: When I worked for a big agency, they billed for all of that stuff. Kind of nuts.

    @rachelcw: I've noticed that as well. I've found that when it's my name/my reputation, I work even harder on being ethical.

    Dietrich: Isn't that funny? I'm the same way.


    ProfNet: "Results, results, results." What kind of results do you measure to prove value to executives?

    Dietrich: I have a for-profit background, so I'll answer from my perspective: increased revenue, shortened sales cycle, improved margin. If you can tie results to one of those three things, you'll win.

    @TerryFlynn: Measure: Relationships + Reputation + Results = Value. Measure strength of the first two and tie to communications results.


    ProfNet: What is the first thing PR pros should consider when creating an integrated campaign?

    Dietrich: It really comes down to the organization's goals. How can your efforts help achieve them? That's the first way to choose.

    Dietrich: On Page 77 in "Marketing in the Round," @geoffliving and I have an exercise to determine where you should start. Thing such as, where do your current strengths lie and where are your resources best spent? And, whether or not you're willing to experiment or what your competition does.

    @TerryFlynn: At the end of the day, organizations want to increase positive supportive behavior among key stakeholder groups. Professional communicators need to demonstrate how relationship and reputation activities increase positive supportive behavior.

    @higginbomb: First thing: Goals. You can't plan a campaign if you don't know where it leads.

    Dietrich: @higginbomb: Yes!!

    @RebeccaAmyTodd: @higginbomb Well said sir!


    ProfNet: How do you answer the PR vs. publicity question? (What is that question?)

    Dietrich: Ahhh. My favorite. I love it when prospects call and say, "I want to be in the NY Times!" Um...OK?

    Dietrich: PR is not just publicity (or media relations). We have to do a better job, as an industry, of educating business leaders.

    @joseph_davis: Golden quote. RT @ginidietrich: PR is not just publicity. We have to do a better job, as an industry, of educating business leaders.

    @KamaTimbrell: So true. I'm a publicist and am shocked when people say publicity = PR.

    @eclecticLarry: [So true] RT @ginidietrich: PR is not just publicity (or media relations). We have to do better job of educating business leaders.


    ProfNet: Do you think social media belongs to PR?

    Dietrich: I'm going to get hate mail for this, but no. I think social media belongs to everyone. Social media is quickly becoming a way we all communicate. It's going to continue to grow. That's why it's not a discipline.

    @RebeccaAmyTodd: Agreed! I am technically in sales, but love to connect with my customers in a non-sales way. I try to find, read, comment and share upon the blogs of my customers.

    @_SoloDovePR: Yes, you have to integrate.

    Dietrich: @_SoloDovePR Yes!

    @OGPR: Social media is a team effort, for sure.

    Dietrich: God bless you.

    @TerryFlynn: @ginidietrich: I agree it belongs to everyone -- but who has responsibility and accountability for it? Need one group to coordinate.

    Dietrich: @TerryFlynn: I think that depends on the organization and who they have inside. Sometimes it'll be PR, sometimes marketing, sometimes advertising.

    @dianeschwartz: Yes! But it's nice to share with marketing.

    @KamaTimbrell: Social has to be something that *everyone* is a part of. It's social, after all. Make social one person's or department's sole responsibility if you enjoy watching people burn out and quit.


    @RebeccaAmyTodd: Where do you see sales in the traditional PR/marketing silos?

    Dietrich: In the traditional silos, it doesn't exist. Sales + PR = naughty word. But that's changing.


    ProfNet: So should each department have their own social accounts, or does everyone share one, or something else?

    Dietrich: Everyone will have their own personal accounts from which they communicate. Social will spread across everyone. Just like we used to have typists, now everyone types. Soon we won't have social media experts. Just communications experts. Using social just makes communicating easier and more efficient.

    @TerryFlynn: Social is a way of doing and thinking. RT @ginidietrich: Using social just makes communicating easier and more efficient.

    @josefrivera: Yeah, but then if everyone communicates, then it still comes down to good people skills and listening skills.

    Dietrich: @josefrivera: Sure. But everyone uses email. Why is social different?

    @josefrivera: Email goes to one and is less threatening. Social is out there, and some may not be ready to make that leap!


    @johnheaney: Do you think organizations will require employees to tweet just from company-owned twitter accounts?

    Dietrich: I hope not! That defeats the purpose. I think social will be like email -- you have company and personal accounts

    @johnheaney: Companies own your business email account, but not necessarily your Twitter account, unless they plan for it. If only to protect IP and to keep Twitter accounts from leaving with former employees, they may require use of business accounts.

    @RebeccaAmyTodd: We just had this debate about our LinkedIn accounts!

    @johnheaney: @RebeccaAmyTodd: LinkedIn and Facebook make it explicit that the individual is sole owner of personal account, not Twitter.

    @RebeccaAmyTodd: @johnheaney: Excellent point! Thank you sir.

    @KamaTimbrell: @johnheaney: I don't think a company can ever *own* an employee's Twitter account.

    Dietrich: @KamaTimbrell: No kidding!

    Dietrich: @johnheaney: I know some organizations that require a business account and that it's closed when you leave.

    @johnheaney: @KamaTimbrell: Sure they can. @BillatDell is owned by Dell. If Bill leaves, his Twitter account stays. No reason a business Twitter account can't be renamed and transferred to new employee to keep tweeting.

    @KamaTimbrell: @johnheaney: Okay, but that's not an employee's Twitter account. That's a CSR account. CSR likely doesn't tweet cute cat pics.

    Dietrich: @johnheaney: You could do that, but renaming your account is never advisable. Your personality and tweet history are gone.

    @KamaTimbrell: business =/= personal.

    @johnheaney: @KamaTimbrell: Doesn't have to be CSR; would apply to any employee who tweets for organization and builds network.

    @johnheaney: @ginidietrich: There is a downside, but less so than discarding the account and starting over with a new employee in same position.

    @KamaTimbrell: @johnheaney: Under a brand name? Still not a personal account. Overly broad social media policies are being slapped down. Claiming ownership of employee's personal accounts is ill advised.

    @johnheaney: @KamaTimbrell: It's not claiming ownership of their accounts, but setting up new corporate accounts for business use with the employee name attached

    @KamaTimbrell: @johnheaney: That's not a personal account, which is what I was responding to (i.e., "unless they plan for it").


    ProfNet: If social belongs to PR, how do we determine when to bring in other disciplines to help?

    Dietrich: *IF* PR is leading social, it has to be someone who understands the value of the other disciplines in order to integrate.

    @CorrieKerr: Project management software? Effective mini-meetings? Building a team from collaborative-minded people?


    @CorrieKerr: What are some keys to destroying silos?

    @RebeccaAmyTodd: I think it takes a very, very strong leader.

    @TerryFlynn: Leadership, responsibility and accountability.

    Dietrich: Yes, all of the above! We talk about a marketing round -- a team of people from each discipline. It definitely takes a very strong leader -- someone who knows when to push and when not.

    @RebeccaAmyTodd: Yes, I think it needs a pressure and support piece. Change in results precedes change in attitude.


    ProfNet: How do we measure our results on social media?

    Dietrich: Measuring results on social is just like anything else. What is it going to do to help the organization's goals? When you know WHY you're using social media and how it helps the organization, you'll know how to measure.

    @RebeccaAmyTodd: That's GOLD!

    @WakemanAgency: Great point! We were just pondering that this morning! Perfect timing :)

    Dietrich: We always go back to those three places: increased revenue, shortened sales cycle and improved margins.


    ProfNet: How do you prove increased revenue, for example, with social media?

    Dietrich: This is why integration is so important. You should tie social to something you can measure: email, inbound, content. Create unique URLs or landing pages to discover where people are coming from to measure conversion.

    @janbarstad: Had to take a look at #ConnectChat. Maybe some learning for ROI, checking it out.


    ProfNet: What is the No. 1 thing PR pros need to be thinking about as the industry continues to evolve?

    Dietrich: Results, results, results! (Did I say that already?) We have to learn some marketing skills and measure our efforts. The lines are blurring and the ones who survive are those who can show real value for what they're doing. No more impressions and AVEs and numbers of fans and followers. Now you have to show business results. Learn how a company makes money, make friends with someone in accounting, analyze data, go back to school if you have to -- just learn how to measure your efforts.

    @johnheaney: @ginidietrich: Could not agree more. Follower, fans and retweets do not define success. Ask your banker.

    @JohnDobbin: Whatever you do, don't speak to someone in accounting!!!

    @higginbomb: Keep up with new tools. PR mission stays the same, but we need to stay where the audience is.

    @TopherJRyan: Communicate directly in mediums that feign intimacy to eliminate interpretation from the process. Straightforward approach. The best piece of advice I ever received but don't always use: if you have a great idea, say it. Or it'll never see the light. Learn to put the "useless" to use. (It's not all valuation.) Clear communication is privy to business apps numbers cannot achieve.


    ProfNet: Who are some PR bloggers you recommend people read?

    Dietrich: Check out @dbreakenridge, @shonali, @prcog, @markraganceo, @kensviews, @soulati, @prtini, @nateriggs and @steveology


    ProfNet: Any final questions or comments?

    @rachelcw: Incidentally, even if you're not a PR pro, today's #ConnectChat with @ginidietrich hosted by @ProfNet has a wealth of info.

    @rachelcw: It's a joy to tune into this #ConnectChat. Well done @ProfNet.

    @rachelcw: I'm developing a professional girl crush on @ginidietrich. Sometimes it just happens that way. And I promise, no more RTs.

    @RebeccaAmyTodd: @rachelcw: Join the club!

    @TerryFlynn: Thanks. Enjoyed the opportunity to participate.

    @HerzogIND: Her thread on Twitter is always invaluable, but never more than today. Go read @ginidietrich's comments on #ConnectChat regardless of organization.

    @EMjennielle: @HerzogIND: Thank you for pointing me towards @ginidietrich feed and #ConnectChat… Great stuff!

    @PatrickHayslett: Wow. Looks like some really good stuff coming from @ginidietrich in #ConnectChat.


    ProfNet, a service of PR Newswire, has helped journalists and experts connect since 1992. Writers can search the ProfNet Connect database of more than 50,000 profiles; send a ProfNet query by email to thousands of subscribers around the globe; or get timely experts and story ideas by email.

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