RAQ: Would you do a video about why PR and marketing pros need an iPhone?

At the #mayoragan09 conference earlier this week I participated in a “30 ideas in 30 minutes” panel, which was intended to provide rapid-fire, practical applications and next steps to take for people interested in incorporating social media into their health care work.

My first tip (after the obligatory “Get a Flip”), was:

Get an iPhone.

I suppose I shouldn’t have been, but I was somewhat surprised at the murmur that comment created. And in the Q&A session, I got this request:

“Could you upload a Flip video about why I should get an iPhone, so I can use it to make the case with my boss?”

My other tips, two of which require some expenditure and others that are free:

  • Get a Flip video camera (or something similar.) Cost is $150-$230 MSRP, but you can get them cheaper.
  • Join Audible.com, which is an audio “book of the month” club. Listen to any books you can find from Clayton Christensen, Malcolm Gladwell, or Patrick Lencioni. And of course get Chris Anderson’s book, Free: The Future of a Radical Price, for free. Cost is about $15/month.
  • Get the “Bump” application for iPhone, which lets you exchange contact info with other iPhone users with a fist bump. Free.
  • Create a blog as a “dark site” for crisis communications. Use wordpress.com to create a private blog, which you can make public should a crisis arise. That could save you 15 minutes or so in setting up a way to communicate broadly via the Web, which in a crisis could be precious time savings. Free on WordPress.com.

If you do anything at all in continuing education for your professional growth, you may spend $1,000 or more for conference registrations, plus travel expenses.

How sad would it be to pay for a conference registration to learn about social media tools, and then to not spend the relatively smaller amount it takes to get hands-on experience?

And of course, do take advantage of the free tools as well, including enrolling in SMUG (join the Facebook group, follow the Chancellor on Twitter, and subscribe to the RSS feed).

See Aaron Hughling’s take-aways from the conference, as well as Holly Potter’s.

I hope this helps you make the case for your smartphone, whether that’s with your employer, your spouse or to help you convince yourself.

MHSCN Accomplished

Yup…that’s how they say the acronym for the Minnesota Health Strategy & Communications Network. I’ve noted before that health care communications organizations seem to have the opposite problem of cardiology clinical trials: while the latter insert extra letters (or pull them from the middle of words in studies’ titles) to create acronyms like HOPE, LIPID, PICASSO and CABANA, Minnesota’s is only one of several health communications organizations that need to just buy a vowel! (Florida has FSHPRM, and Wisconsin has WHPRMS.)

Here’s the presentation I’m offering as a keynote this afternoon for the MHSCN 2009 Summer Conference (PDF):

Update: As I sometimes do, I mentioned my granddaughter Evelyn a few times in this presentation, and showed some video of her. I also mentioned how much we enjoy getting to see her across the miles via Facebook and Skype. So after my presentation, Deb McKinley of Stratis Health asked me to turn on the Flip so she could send a message back to Evelyn. Here it is:

PR and Social Media Measurement Award Program

For those SMUGgles who are working in PR and who have used PR research and measurement extensively in one of your PR campaigns this past year, you might want to consider entering the Jack Felton Golden Ruler Award for Excellence in PR Measurement & Evaluation.  Entries of all types are welcome – including research using social media!  The award recognizes superb examples of research used to support public relations practice. Winners are honored at the Institute for Public Relations Summit on Measurement in October in Portsmouth, NH.
Entries are due August 15th.  Here are examples of previous winners’ entries: Padilla Speer Beardsley’s Winning 2007 entry or Shell’s 2008 entry – and there are more on the site.
I was in Portsmouth for the IPR meeting two years ago when Padilla Speer was recognized, and the campaign they did (and the recognition they received) was quite impressive. This isn’t “just another” award program. I’m now a member of the IPR measurement commission, and this award is intended to be a really rigorous, worthwhile program to highlight the best measurement work being done in PR.

HeSCA Social Media Presentation

Last Friday I had the opportunity to give a two-part presentation to HeSCA, and its 50th International Conference on Health & Science Communications. The first part was an overview entitled, “Why Social Media are Essential to the Future of Health and Science Communication” and the second was a hands-on workshop on Twitter and 10 steps to getting started with social media, first as an individual and then as an organization. Here, as I promised the group, are the slides:

I appreciated the opportunity to share with HeSCA, and look forward to feedback and to answering any questions here.

The $4-a-week Online Newsroom (and other MacGyver Tips)

Here’s the presentation I’m giving this morning at the Ragan Communications Corporate Communicators Conference in Chicago. I’m part of the Social Media track, from 9:45 to 10:45 CDT.

I welcome any questions or comments below. And if you want to follow or participate in the Twitter stream, please use the #ccc09 and #smug hashtags.