Public Relations is evolving quickly. From the change in technology used, to the changing marketing dynamics, to increase in demand and empowerment of customers and most importantly the medium and channel used to reach out to the public; every aspect of Public Relations is witnessing a gradual change. Be it an influencer or direct customers, even their mind set is changing. Therefore, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to view PR in same way as it was 5 years back.
One of the biggest contributors in the evolution of Public Relations Industry is the increase in use of Social Media Platforms to reach out to target audience.
The role of PR has become identical with Social Media and Social Media Campaigns are now an integral part of any PR campaigns. A PR Campaign with no social media approach is considered to be an incomplete one. Social media is not only forcing PR agencies to become much more integrated but the rise of social media has also had an effect on media organizations which are now in search of unique and engaging content which will drive traffic to their websites. This in turn has transformed the role of PR!
Below mentioned are some of the ways in which social media has impacted and transformed PR.
Story Life-Span- The life span of news stories has shortened with introduction of digital media, forcing media professional to work on the stories in shorter span of time. This has compelled PR to maintain pace with the latest happening in industry and upheavals. Now-a-day’s Social media platforms are the most used means to connect with media professionals after email and phone.
Functioning of PR- Accept it or not, social media has changed the functioning of PR to some extent. Besides pitching stories, media interactions, distributing press releases and maintaining relationships with media houses, it has pushed PR agencies to build a strong brand via content sharing, infographic, pictures etc. on online platforms as well. This is one of the reasons that today’s PR tools include variety of tasks from content generation to event promotion.
Consumer Connect- For ages PR professionals have been communicating with journalist only. Now with the introduction of Social Media, PR professionals are getting experience of interacting with consumers directly which ultimately helps them understand their client better. This is one of the reasons why PR firms are optimistic about the role of social media.
Content publishing- Thanks to social media, press releases are not anymore plain, simple and to the point. Now press releases are being pressed for tactical approach to get noticed. Most PR firms exercise social media for content publishing purpose. In the recent times, PR companies have displayed an inclination to share posts on Twitter Facebook and publish original comments on the networking channels.
Communication is a two-way street- Social Media allows brands to communicate on a direct basis with the audiences. Key platforms such as Twitter and Facebook have helped PR to undertake an in-depth evaluation of a campaign away from the print impressions or enhanced sales. Real-time consumer feedback lets businesses to judge sentiment and relate to their audiences, which was not achievable in the past.