Everyone needs to read Rich Leigh’s Myths of PR

I’ll be honest with you. When Mr PR (Rich Leigh) sent me an email asking me to review his book, Myths of PR I was skeptical. I attend classes, work part-time, read for my MA in the evening and try to stay on top of the latest social media developments. I didn’t think I had time to read another textbook giving the ins and outs of PR and social media theory.

How wrong I was.

What Rich has accomplished is a witty and concise book that boils down the well-known myths and phrases associated with public relations and relates them to real world examples.

Whether you’re a business managing your own PR and social media, an established practitioner acting on behalf of clients, a PR or marketing student, or just someone who likes to read, Myths of PR will have something for you.

I particularly enjoyed Rich’s insights on the measurement of PR and social media. A hot topic that I have been following for some time. I won’t ruin it for you, but Rich offers some great advice about digital measurement of PR and social media activity using Google Goals and other tools.

In a world where AVEs are no longer acceptable, PR practitioners often struggle with demonstrating value to clients who only understand the bottom line. Sentiment is wooly and post-recession, PR is still floundering to make itself worthwhile to businesses who don’t understand its value. Rich writes about this debate succinctly and with refreshing honesty, while providing simple solutions for PR practitioners and businesses looking for digital measurement metrics.

Another valid and insightful myth Rich dispels is that social media is pay to play. While social ads are effective, organic reach will always be a valuable asset to the organisation you represent. Rich uses this chapter to highlight the importance of content creation and customer relations, again offering practical advice on how to build your audience without resorting to boosted posts and targeted ads.

Rich goes on to address some of the more prevalent issues in PR such as the death of the press release, if there is such a thing as bad publicity, and the gender pay gap in PR to name a few.

The lighthearted copy is accessible and makes you want to read on.  It’s really rare that I’ve actually enjoyed reading what is in essence a ‘textbook’, but Rich has a unique ability to transfer his conversational writing style to the practice and theory of public relations with ease. In my eyes, this book establishes Rich as a thought leader in the PR profession while the unassuming nature of his statements are entirely relatable and relevant to current PR debates.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a well established PR practitioner, just starting out, or mistakenly thought being a PR was the same as being a PA, you will take something home from reading this book.

Myths of PR is available now in Kindle and Paperback editions.

*This post wasn’t paid for. I just really enjoyed the book.


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