Read Up: Staying informed on social media

By: Mina Lezenby

“I use social media as an idea generator, trend mapper and strategic compass for all of our online business ventures,” said once by Paul Barron, author of “The Chipotle Effect.”

In the PR industry, there is no question that social media can be essential for any of these reasons. Whether it’s a research tool to learn more about your audience or to help build a community around an organization or client, social media is the place to find real-time results.

But the world of social media can also be insanely confusing when trying to keep up with the latest platform updates or the newest app –all the while, still trying to focus on doing your actual job in social media or communications.

To help cope with living in the age of information overload, I wanted to share some websites that can be fun reads, while still keeping you informed on #whatshappening on social:

Mashable: To me, Mashable is like a more tech-focused Buzzfeed. Yeah, they still post goofy stories that might not be totally related to anything sometimes, but it’s often some good old-fashioned brain candy, along with top highlights happening around the tech industry, and social media specifically.

We are Social Media: While I think I coincidentally found this through social media, this website out of the U.K is a great social media-focused blog. Their posts focus on the less mainstream updates from the social industry, and it is timely with the major announcements and rollouts too. This is a good source if you’re looking to delve deeper into the finer workings of each platform and how they’re growing.

TechCrunch: TechCrunch is another major hitter in publications that are topical for anyone in communications or technology to be reading. While the title of the online resource might have you thinking, “This is going to be more technical,” and will go over your head, it isn’t. While the articles may cover some tech-heavy stories straight out of Silicon Valle, they offer updates on other major digital platforms such as brand apps and social media platforms. Reading content from this site can be a great resource for you to stay a little more on top of your tech game in both being informed and seeing what other brand competitors are doing digitally.

Whatever publication is your fancy, make sure to check up on them often. While you’re out on an interview or working with a client, it’s important to not let yourself get to out of date on what’s happening on social, even if you don’t always work with it directly in your internship or job.

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