I can sum up everything that I learned in this book in two words.
It covers common sense things that anyone who has spent any time on the Internet would know.
This was written for people who have already worked in public relations but have had practically no experience in using the Internet. It starts with a history of the Internet, then looks at communications and how the Internet has changed them.
Part Two is more useful for established public relations practitioners as it covers measurement and audiences. It talks about using the Internet in establishing and maintaining media relations. There was actually one very good section here. In order to use the Internet effectively, you must consider it to be a channel of communications between the PR specialist and the media. The only way to do that is to give the media what they want.
Do not send email blindly to journalists and other members of the media unless they have indicated, perhaps at the end of their column, that they welcome email submissions. Always contact them first by telephone to determine if they might be interested in the story that you are promoting. If they are, then you may send them the information via email. Keep it short; no more than two pages. Use excruciatingly good grammar. Be polite and give them information that helps them to do their jobs more easily.
As in any part of public relations, establishing contact and credibility with the media is key to your success in getting your story covered.
Keep a database of your press releases online so that the media people can find them when they need information. You want your PR people to work with your webmaster while your website is being developed. Other suggestions include that you make sure to have an email contact address at your website that is regularly checked by someone responsible. He recommends the use of newsletters, bulletin boards and chat rooms to pull people onto your site. He also notes that it is difficult to get demographic information on your users and suggests registration to get their contact information and demographics.
I personally don't recommend that you use registration for your site when you are just starting out because it will drive users from your site rather than pull them into it.
If you are not familiar with the Internet, this book may be useful. If you are a regular user, you may want to find other sources of information on PR on the Internet.