Following the popularity of last year’s 12 Books To Read To Sharpen Your Public Relations Skills In 2015 post, I figured I should draft my 2016 PR reading list. I had fun reading my picks for 2015 and am looking forward to tackling my 2016 picks. Franco Book Club anyone?
1. Spinglish: The Definitive Dictionary of Deliberately Deceptive Language by Henry Beard
While I hate the term “spin doctor” to describe public relations professionals, I can’t help but laugh along with this dictionary. Some of the words and jargon we have to use for clients can be fairly amusing, but Spinglish rounds up all of the best ones for your viewing pleasure.
2. Be Your Own Best Publicist:How to Use PR Techniques to Get Noticed, Hired, and Rewarded at Work by Jessica Kleiman
There’s an old saying that the shoemaker’s children go shoeless and public relations professionals are no different. We can crush it at our jobs on a daily basis, but when it comes to promoting ourselves it’s a different story. Be Your Own Best Publicist is a great reminder to apply your public relations skills to yourself.
3. The PR Masterclass: How to Develop a Public Relations Strategy that Works! by Alex Singleton
Written in 2014, The PR Masterclass is a more updated guide to media relations written by a longtime newspaper, magazine and digital journalist. If you’re looking for some tips on how to take your media relations skills to the next level look no further.
4. The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. & E.B. White
We are always looking to improve our writing skills and The Elements of Style is a classic guide for the writer who wants something a little more sophisticated. If you are looking to impress your boss or clients with your linguistic skills make sure to keep this guide on your shelf.
5. The Art of Client Service: 58 Things Every Advertising & Marketing Professional Should Know by Robert Solomon
Working in an agency, client service is what we do day in and day out. The Art of Client Service is a great handbook for employees at any level. It also answers questions like “What happens when I screw up?” Whether you have been in the business for 2 years or 20, this book is a great refresher on working with clients.
The Art of the Pitch has nothing to do with media pitches and everything to do with presentations. As you move up the ladder in your career, you will spend more time pitching new business to prospective and current clients. You may have a great idea, but if you can’t sell it to your client, their board or potential customers it means nothing.
7. Trust Me I’m Lying: Confessions of a Media Manipulator by Ryan Holiday
I’m not necessarily condoning all of the tactics in Trust Me I’m Lying, but I think it makes for an interesting read. The author was the marketing director at American Apparel for many years and they’ve had plenty of PR crises throughout the years. In light of Tina Kozak’s recent blog post Election 2016: The Power of Earned Media, I thought this was interesting.
8. The Five Dysfunctions of Team: A Leadership Fable by Patrick Lencioni
As an account manager here at Franco, I love the leadership fable approach in The Five Dysfunctions of Team. A collaborative team is one of the best parts about working at Franco and this is a great tool for managers to help overcome common hurdles and create an effective working environment.
9. Above the Noise: Creating Trust, Value & Reputation Online Using Basic Digital PR by Carrie Morgan
It’s hard to find a social media book that is not already outdated, but Above the Noise was recently published in January 2016. I preach consistency to my social media teams and this is a great guide that follows the same approach.
10. Mastering the New Media Landscape: Embrace the Micromedia Mindset by Barbara Cave Henricks & Rusty Shelton
Have you mastered earned, owned and rented media? As PR people we are all familiar with earned media, but many of us are still navigating the new opportunities that social media and online content bring to the table. Mastering the New Media Landscape provides strategies for each approach.
11. Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World by Adam Grant
I will admit it, I’m an idea person. I love coming up with new ideas and challenging the status quo. Originals is all about bucking outdated traditions and coming up with new ideas. This just came out in February 2016, so it has some fresh, relevant examples and challenges you to not just think differently, but to be an agent for change in your organization.
12. Smarter, Faster, Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg
Written by a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, Smarter, Faster, Better teaches you how to work smarter, not harder. Working at an agency with billable time, makes you think about ways to boost your productivity. This author has researched the most productive people and shared what they have in common.
Which of these books is on your 2016 reading list? If you have a recommendation let me know in the comments.