Altmetric data has now been added to The Routledge Handbooks Online platform. Added to all books and chapters published since January 2012, Altmetric data will offer users a more complete picture of how people are engaging with books published by Routledge, whether via traditional or social media, blogs or online reference managers.
What does the data show?
Altmetric tracks where individual research outputs are discussed online in a variety of non-traditional sources, including in public policy documents, mainstream and social media, academic forums, and other sites such as Wikipedia and The Conversation. All of these ‘mentions’ are gathered together and compiled into what we call the ‘details page’; the collated record of attention for an individual output.
How is this data collected?
With hundreds of unique policy, media and blog sources, Altmetric scans a huge list of sites in real time looking for links to domains. We follow these links to determine which piece of research the mention refers to, and match that up based on the identifier we find on the resulting page (the identifier might be a DOI or even just the unique URL of the page). This tracking happens in real time, meaning as soon as an article is published we begin to pick up any mentions, and new mentions appear on the details page shortly after they’ve been made.
How can my book or chapter benefit from this?
Altmetrics offer lots of opportunities for book editors and chapter authors. Here are some of the key ways we’d suggest you might get started with the altmetrics data for your publication:
Identify what’s getting attention, and why. The Altmetric details page show you all of the original mentions for an article, so from any given issue you can see which articles have attracted the most attention, and where it came from.Determine your approach to outreach and engagement.
Do you have content you’d like to make more visible? Take a look at the altmetrics for competitor titles and see what’s working for them – a great starting point for building your own outreach strategy!Measure the effects of your efforts! You might find that Tweeting at a particular time of day produces more retweets, or that being featured by a particular blogger draws a lot of attention that an article wouldn’t otherwise get. Figure out what success looks like, and focus your activities on building relationships with those channels.
Ensure your content is being interpreted correctly. Being able to see (via the details pages) who is saying what about the book or chapter you publish, as soon as they’re available online, means you can keep an eye on the conversation and respond to any misunderstandings or misinterpretations in a much more immediate way.
Use altmetrics insights to inform your future content strategy. Not all research is going to receive large amounts of attention online, and there will be lots of different reasons for that. Along with downloads and citation counts, altmetrics can be a powerful tool for informing future editorial strategy – particularly in determining what audiences are currently reaching (or trying to reach) your book or chapter.