Philip Sheldrake

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Tag: ebook

#PRredefined

PRredefined Vol I

In my recent post, The social business mutuality stack, I describe PR theory as the foundation for social business. (You might like to read the post if your understanding of PR is what might be described as mainstream – yes, PR has a reputation problem!) Given the import, I added that I'd joined a new initiative to kick the tyres of PR theory and make sure it's fit for purpose in the 21st Century.

The initiative, #PRredefined, launches today and has a bold ambition – to stimulate and lead the way in new thinking about the theory and practice of public relations, and the first in the corresponding series of ebooks is published today, #PRredefined Vol I. (For Kindle and Kindle apps. Otherwise.) Read more

Why I self-published this time

Having gone down the traditional publishing route with The Business of Influence (Wiley, 2011), I decided for a number of reasons to try a different route in 2013 with Attenzi – a social business story. Most of those reasons boil down to one simple fact, the publishing industry isn't yet embracing social business principles. In fact, it's perhaps a prime example of an industry continuously trying to manipulate the application of 21st Century technologies to maintain the 20th Century status quo.

Attenzi - a social business story, book coverI appreciate that cannibalizing ones own livelihood is never an easy journey (heck, even management consultancies find it tough), but I figure it's got to be worth attempting when the alternative is so bleak. I'm hardly the first to levy such criticism (crystallized beautifully in The Innovators' Dilemma of course), but here's a prime example in my particular case.

Quite clearly, I'd love to stimulate conversation and debate about social business – after all, collaboration and co-operation cannot spring forth without first conversation and sharing. So the ebook formats of Attenzi feature hyperlinks at the beginning of each chapter taking readers from the ebook to the HTML version where they can coalesce to comment, to ask and answer questions, to share resources, as they wish. And share hyperlinks to pages of the book wherever they hang out.

That means the whole book needs to be available in HTML – the global, open standard for the presentation and mark up of documents, <sarcasm>lest anyone from the publishing world require an explanation here</sarcasm>. This in turn means traditional copyright terms would be violated, which means I couldn't work with traditional publishers.

I appreciate the economics here don't apply to all authors or all published works, but as both Doc Searls and JP Rangaswami note, I will derive more value personally "because of" the ebook than "with" the ebook. I have secured two projects during the past six months on the back of releasing Attenzi unfettered, creating revenues far in excess of any I would have derived from traditional royalties. (Note: my writing doesn't achieve Harry Potter levels of readership!)

So I have lived up to the principles of social business, and profitably.

Should any publisher wish to have a conversation about business models for B2B publishing, please get in touch. My network of associates and I have plenty to contribute.

Influence… it's a numbers game

Andrew Smith tickled my fractal with his post yesterday "Where are the PR Numerati?" (and here on MarCom Professional). Why? Because he's right and I'm numerate and I'm in PR. His post was prompted by the August 2008 book "The Numerati" by senior Business Week writer Stephen Baker.

Public relations had been boiled down to a very simple process by the end of the 1990s. Journalists write the papers and magazines the public reads. The PRs know the journalists. The clients retain the PR professionals.

That simple world is no more. I don't mean that traditional media relations no longer exists, only that it is now just a sub-set of a far more complex map of exerting influence.  The best PR professionals will: Read more

Listen. The Science of Social.

I have been invited to no less than a dozen seminars, training courses and conferences about social media in the last month or so. In case you didn't know, social media marketing is quite hot at the moment! Having presented on blogging for business since 2002, before this stuff got its own shows, and even mooted the death of market research in 2006, it's fascinating to see how quickly people cut and paste together their own position on this stuff.

One glaring betrayal of the 'social media practices' that have only recently assembled their facade is their ignorance of the power of listening. They will tell you just how they will be your voice on the social Web, but too rarely do they volunteer to proxy your ears.

Listening to one person isn't easy; active listening is a discipline. Imagine then trying to find, tap into and track one hundred conversations, a thousand, ten thousand; and interpretting this information... turning it into knowledge that informs your marketing strategy and tactics.

Social Web Analytics

This forms a large part of what we call social Web analytics. We define this as the application of search, indexing, semantic analysis and business intelligence technologies to the task of identifying, tracking (listening) and participating in the distributed conversations about a particular brand, product or issue, with emphasis on quantifying the trend in each conversation's sentiment and influence. Read more