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Social Media 202 for journalists: Using SM as a research tool


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Social Media 202 for Journalists: Using Social Media as a Research tool.

This was part of a Social Media series for journalists presented by Robin J Phillips, Web managing editor of

The series was presented over three days for the Reynolds Center for Business Journalism.

Published in: News & Politics, Business
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Social Media 202 for journalists: Using SM as a research tool

  1. 1. Social media 202 Reynolds Center for Business Journalism Twitter: @BizJournalism Facebook: Robin J. Phillips @RobinJP Social Media as a journalistic tool
  2. 2. Know what this is? You’re in the right place.
  3. 3. What you will learn No turning back. Doing nothing is not an option. Why other business journalists like using social media. You have more control than you think. What social media can do for you – personally, professionally. Ways to dig into the data and use social media tools as research tools.
  4. 4. Twitter July 2006 190 million Facebook February 2004 500+ million LinkedIn December 2002 80 million Three main social media networks for journalists
  5. 6. <ul><li>It’s an amazing form of distribution </li></ul><ul><li>2) It’s where things happen first </li></ul><ul><li>3) As a search engine, it rivals Google </li></ul><ul><li>4) It’s a formidable aggregation tool </li></ul><ul><li>5) It’s a great reporting tool </li></ul><ul><li>6) It’s a fantastic form of marketing </li></ul><ul><li>7) It’s a series of common conversations. Or it can be </li></ul><ul><li>8) It’s more diverse </li></ul><ul><li>9) It changes the tone of writing </li></ul><ul><li>10) It’s a level playing field </li></ul><ul><li>11) It has different news values </li></ul><ul><li>12) It has a long attention span </li></ul><ul><li>13) It creates communities </li></ul><ul><li>14) It changes notions of authority </li></ul><ul><li>15) It is an agent of change </li></ul>If Facebook was a country….
  6. 7. Each has its own strength Twitter People you don’t know but who have common interests. Real-time search engine; platform for listening, promoting work; crowdsourcing. Facebook People you know or who know someone you know. Excellent source for finding sources; listening, sharing work; crowdsourcing. LinkedIn Colleagues, former colleagues, professionals. Online Rolodex you don’t have to update; good database of employees; good for crowdsourcing. SM tool Community Journalistic advantage
  7. 8. Why Social Media matters … <ul><li>It’s where things happen first </li></ul><ul><li>2. Linking to articles, distributing content </li></ul><ul><li>As a search engine, it rivals Google </li></ul><ul><li>Self- promotion , contacts that move with you </li></ul><ul><li>Building traffic for new blog, new beat </li></ul><ul><li>Cultivating sources </li></ul><ul><li>Real-time news .. right here, right now … </li></ul>Twitter … and Facebook… and LinkedIn… and Flickr…. and Tumblr… and Blogger… and YouTube… and WordPress… and Foursquare… and Google Reader… 8. Creating community .. power in the network 9. Diversity .. opens up your source base
  8. 9. Tool for reporters
  9. 10. Where things happen first
  10. 11. Linking to articles, distributing content “ Twitter and LinkedIn are terrific for crowdsourcing . … after the tax bill passed, I sent out a tweet asking for tax experts to comment. Thanks to the viral nature of Twitter along with LinkedIn groups, I had a bunch of sources in no time.”
  11. 12. Linking, sharing, being a resource … including your work, your sources’ info, competitors’ stories.
  12. 13. Google searches social tools
  13. 14. Facebook search is not easy But try it.. You may be lucky
  14. 15. Economy: Class of ’82 vs. class of ‘09
  15. 16. Reporter searched Facebook
  16. 17. Subjects for story
  17. 18. Twitter advanced search
  18. 20. Twitter advanced search
  19. 21. LinkedIn: Today’s Rolodex Search: Semiconductors, Intel
  20. 22. Self-promotion, branding YOU
  21. 23. Self-promotion, taking it with you “ Used in the best way, reporters are liberated from the ivory tower of newsroom judgments and can directly interact with readers … the reporter becomes a recognizable contact point for his stories and his beat.”
  22. 24. Customer service
  23. 25. Cultivating sources
  24. 26. Cultivating sources … scoop
  25. 27. Community… power of the network
  26. 28. Mix personal / professional and speak directly to your followers
  27. 29. Direct plea to Facebook friends
  28. 30. Issues to keep in mind <ul><li>Ethics </li></ul><ul><li>To quote or not to quote </li></ul><ul><li>When to take conversation off line </li></ul><ul><li>Need for speed </li></ul><ul><li>Deceptive intimacy </li></ul><ul><li>Mingling with non-professionals </li></ul>
  29. 31. Rules change
  30. 32. Just because we can…
  31. 33. Tweet that went very wrong Original Tweet
  32. 34. .. and just last week
  33. 35. The future .. aggregation, telling stories together
  34. 36. Telling stories by aggregating social media
  35. 37. Where to go from here Be an early tester but a late adopter. Find out what works for you and ignore the rest. Understand the landscape. Learn the pros and cons of the biggest social media sites so you can use them better. Stay informed. Twitter feed. Google reader. Create lists. Both Twitter and Facebook make this easy. Don’t flood the zone. Use a tool like HootSuite that lets you save drafts and schedule updates on multiple networks and from multiple profiles, all at once. Lose the guilt. There’s no reason whatsoever to worry about what you miss on Twitter or Facebook.