I received a review copy of The Public Relations Strategic Toolkit: An essential guide to successful public relations practice when it was first published in July. It has been sat on my desk at home ever since. Not because I haven't read it but because it's a very good book that I've regularly dipped into.
The Public Relations Strategic Toolkit by Alison Theaker and Heather Yaxley is a toolkit as the title suggests. The book is a mix of public relations theory, case studies and practical guidance. It provides a thorough grounding for anyone new to the industry and is an instant aide memoir for experienced practitioners.
Strategy sits alongside tactics and old with new. The book tackles the disintermediation of media and the shift to digital in a chapter on digital public relations but sticks to the fundamental principles of organisational engagement via the internet.
This is a textbook but not in the traditional sense. Theaker and Yaxley have a mix of academic and practical experience from careers as teachers and practitioners.
The Public Relations Strategic Toolkit is packed with insight from recent public relations campaigns and prompts for discussion and further information. Its 22 chapters and 480 pages cover the public relations profession, planning, corporate communication and stakeholder engagement.
The book is well produced. The bibliography and the index are first rate. If you're studying public relations you'll appreciate the exhaustive list of third party sources and if you're a practitioner the index will guide you quickly to the information that you seek.
There is also an excellent Appendix of template documents that alone provide the fundamental building blocks for a modern public relations operation and payback for the cover price. At £25.99 it's a significant sum for students but undoubtedly reflects the work that the authors have put into the book.
The Public Relations Strategic Toolkit is a book that student, teacher and practitioner will want to keep close to hand. It's a primer for the public relations industry.