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Leeds Met HEA Workshop


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Presentation delivered at the joint Leeds Met University and Higher Education Academy workshop on digital PR and education, Leeds, 3rd September 2013

Published in: Education, Technology, Business
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Leeds Met HEA Workshop

  1. 1. What should PR educators be teaching students about social media? Simon Collister
  2. 2. Session overview • Scene setting and context (10mins) • Group tasks (20mins) • Feedback and discussion (20mins) • Wrap-up and next steps? (10mins)
  3. 3. Caveat emptor 1. Not advocating training instead of strategic planning or leadership education 2. Not making distinction (yet) between BA and MA levels
  4. 4. PR industry context “New PR environment calls for a blend of the old and the new, cautious and careful experience combined with creative and enthusiastic adoption of new platforms […] Participants identify a process of constantly learning new things, playing with new platforms and openly engaging with social media” (Williams et al, 2012)
  5. 5. PR leadership context “Within minutes of PRWeek's interview starting, Grant is lambasting the PR industry for 'missing the boat' on digital, allowing advertising and media agencies to steal a march.” (Luker 2012)
  6. 6. Practical context • New roles already established and emerging: e.g. community manager, digital engagement manager, analyst, digital storyteller, etc • New skills and processes needed, e.g. understanding social media influence, measuring social media metrics, curating content, directly engaging stakeholders • New technologies maturing, e.g. social media monitoring software, social media management platforms, social analytics tools, etc
  7. 7. Case study: Community Manager • Ruth, 24, works for a FTSE 100 business managing Facebook, YouTube & Twitter communities; also identifies and engages online influencer networks, e.g. bloggers, YouTube Directors, etc • Strategic knowledge of community building, engagement planning and engagement; tactical knowledge of Facebook Page management techniques, developed organisational social media policy and engagement guidelines (inc. reporting metrics/formats) • Practical experience using content management platforms (Hootsuite); content curation tools (Pecolate) analytics tools (SocialBakers); monitoring/research software (Sysomos)
  8. 8. Group discussion Working in groups I want us to: 1. Discuss our awareness and knowledge of social media in practice and consider our desire (or otherwise) to develop these attributes (10mins) 2. Then identify personal, institutional or ethical barriers to development (10mins)
  9. 9. Focus on… • People and roles, e.g. community manager, engagement manager, analyst, etc • Skills and processes, e.g. creating multi-media content, planning strategic actions/editorial, reporting social performance to management, directly engaging customers/stakeholders • Technologies, e.g. social media monitoring software, content management platforms, etc 10 Mins
  10. 10. Barriers? • Are there any personal barriers to developing your awareness, knowledge or desire to learn more or apply knowledge in the classroom? • Are there institutional technology barriers? • What about any perceived ethical implications? 10 Mins
  11. 11. Discussion and feedback • What levels of awareness, knowledge and desire exist? • What barriers to development were identified? • Any ideas for addressing those barriers (personal or institutional)?
  12. 12. Next steps? Personal • Survey graduate and work placement students about current roles, skills and technologies • Start reading blogs covering social media, e.g. AllFacebook, SocialMediaToday, etc • Sign-up for free trials of technologies and experiment • integrate emerging skills and tools into existing schemes of work – or create new ones Institutional • Establish a working group to collaborate on staying abreast of industry developments • Audit UK industry to identify and assess demand for new/emerging roles, skills, technologies, etc • Establish online resource (blog or wiki?) to publish and share knowledge (textbooks of limited use) – or co-opt existing resource, e.g. PRBooks wiki • Develop CPD pathway for developing and maintaining knowledge and skills of social media practice
  13. 13. References • Williams, S., Challenor, J. and Collister, S. (2012) Recruiting for PR 2.0. Paper presented at EUPREA Congress 2012, Istanbul, Turkey, September 20th-22nd 2012 • Luker, S. (2012) „Robin Grant: Man on a Digital Mission‟ PR Week. [Online] Accessed on 29th August 2013. Available: man-digital-mission/