Skip to main content

Social Media Relations vs. Traditional PR Skills

Social-Media-RelationsThe emergence of social media has dramatically changed the role of public relations. While traditional journalists still have significant authority, influence is now more diffused among writers, analysts, bloggers, customers, and other internal and external subject matter experts. As the landscape has shifted from being dominated by one-to-many mass media to many-to-many participatory social media, the skillsets required of PR professionals have changed.

Technical ability—not all that long ago, PR pros' primary tools were email and the phone. Now they need to know how to properly use (from both a technical and etiquette standpoint) all the major tools on the social media landscape, how to produce thought-leadership content, how to put together social media releases, at least a passing knowledge of online video production and sharing, and more.

Conversational style—PR people used to interact primarily with industry journalists. "Pitching" and "spinning" were terms often used (not always with a positive connotation) to describe much of that interaction. Those days are fading, which is welcome news to many PR practitioners as well as their audiences. Greater availability of information requires greater transparency, but also leads to richer conversations.

Understanding motivations—PR used to be primarily about communicating to and through journalists, and the motivations of both parties were primarily commercial. With the diffusion of influence created by social media, PR pros need to understand a much wider range of motivations. Prospects, customers, bloggers and other participants in social media each have their own motivations, which are very different from a magazine writers'. PR people need the ability to assess and address those differing incentives.

Professional informality—conversations used to fall reasonably neatly into two groups: public communication, which was formal (a press release, a carefully crafted "quote" from an executive, on-the-record interviews, etc.) and private conversations, which could be informal. The emergence of blogs, blog commenting, Twitter, forums and other tools has forced PR workers to master a new balance of public but informal communication. Press releases make lousy blog copy, and there's no room for a detailed legal disclaimer in a 140-character Tweet. Social media interaction is by nature informal, yet for PR pros must remain professional, as their interactions will be official, public and permanent regardless of the medium.

But while social media demands new skills, many "traditional" PR skills are still important. PR professionals still need to be highly organized extroverts with exceptional writing skills and the ability to craft a compelling story.

A growing number of PR firms get this and are hiring or developing these skills. Those stuck in the old world of big media will find it increasingly difficult to spread their words in the increasingly diffuse influence landscape.

*****


Contact Mike Bannan: mike@digitalrdm.com

Comments

All Time Greats

Best of 2008: Social Media Optimization, Part 6

This content has been moved to Best of 2008: Social Media Marketing on the Webbiquity blog. ***** technorati tags: online video SEO reputation management social bookmarking social media marketing SEO and reputation management Search Engine Journal Loren Baker Google Video ClipShare PHPmotion 30 largest social bookmarking sites Anything Goes Blog Stuntdubl social media can increase revenue Social Media Today Jacob Morgan increase blog traffic How To Make My Blog Marko Saric what not to do in social media Interactive Insights Group Robin Broitman social media gaffes Target Motrin Starbucks Whole Foods FedEx del.icio.us tags: online video SEO reputation management social bookmarking social media marketing SEO and reputation management Search Engine Journal Loren Baker Google Video ClipShare PHPmotion 30 largest social bookmarking sites Anything Goes Blog Stuntdubl social media can increase revenue Social Media Today Jacob Morgan increa

How to Use SEO: Leverage SEO To Be Found Online and Boost Your Online Marketing

All businesses that want to attract customers online, no matter the business size or age, have few options other than Search Engine Optimization (SEO).  SEO In The Box™ by Results Driven Marketing®, LLC There are roughly 1.8 billion websites online, and basic SEO allows Google to find and index or catalog your webpages.  After that, Google serves you up to searchers in the organic section.  The question remains: where they list your site, on page one or page 22 or further back? SEO controls your positioning. Do you want to be found online or not? If your business is online or you want your product or service to be found online, then Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a must, and knowing how to use SEO to leverage the power of the internet is vital. Arguably, an effective SEO strategy gets you on the organic results section of the search engine results pages (SERP). Organic traffic is highly valuable and requires high-quality SEO. But even businesses that use l

Top Notch Digital Marketing Tip: Google AdWords and PPC

Looking for some online marketing strategy or social media tips to grow your business? Well, you’ve come to the right digital marketing resource! Web Market Central has been doling out the proper digital marketing advice for years. And as you already know, marketing to customers online is 100 times easier than using dated, expensive and traditional marketing tactics. Like seriously, who uses billboards in 2019? But you already know how effective digital marketing can be in the modern age. So now that you're totally convinced of what you already knew, let’s give you today's top-notch digital marketing tip! The Pure Unfettered Power of PPC (Pay-Per-Click) and PPC Campaigns Just like optimizing your site to rank for keywords, you can use our online marketing tips to pay to run advertisements on Google so that your business is shown on the first page of search engine results. Ranking this way is instantaneous whereas SEO (Search Engine Optimization) takes some

Top Notch Digital Marketing Tip: Optimize Your Site

Looking for some online marketing tips to grow your business? Well, you’ve come to the right digital marketing resource! Web Market Central has been doling out the proper digital marketing advice for years. And as you already know, marketing to customers online is 100 times easier than using dated, expensive and traditional marketing tactics. Like seriously, who uses billboards in 2019? But you already know how effective digital marketing and an seo strategy can be in the modern age. So now that you're totally convinced of what you already knew, let’s give you today's top-notch digital marketing tip! Optimize Your Site to Improve Search Engine Rankings Most small business owners know that their websites need to be optimized in order for search engines, like Google and Bing, to find them and rank them on the search engine results page. If you don’t know, that’s okay. You can learn all about Search Engine Optimization and SEO best practices here to help impr

Top-Notch Digital Marketing Tip: Advertisements That Make Sense

Looking for some online marketing tips to grow your business? Well, you’ve come to the right digital marketing resource ! Web Market Central has been doling out the proper DM advice for years. And as you already know, marketing to customers online is 100 times easier than using dated, expensive and traditional marketing tactics. Like seriously, who uses billboards in 2019? But you already know how effective Digital Marketing can be in the modern age. So now that you're totally convinced of what you already knew, let’s give you today's top notch-digital marketing tip! Advertisement Congruence If your business is running ads this is one of our most important online marketing tips! Ad congruence is when your ads and landing pages look alike or have the same message. Have you ever clicked on an ad and been taken to a page that looked nothing like the ad? When your ads look like the web pages they lead to, customers will feel like they are in the right plac

Email Campaign, Newsletter and Banner Ad Click-Through Rates (CTR)

When planning online advertising and email promotion budgets, it's critical to calculate the likely ROI upfront whenever possible, as well as to establish campaign benchmarks. The first step is understanding the average and likely range of CTRs for various programs. The growth in online advertising, the proliferation of enewsletters, the emergence of new forms of information delivery such as RSS and the emergence of social media sites have all affected CTR, so planning based on current data is crucial. It can be challenging to find current statistics, but based on several studies, these are typical CTR ranges for email newsletter ads, email campaigns (blasts or internally-produced enewsletters), and banner ads. Email newsletter advertisements Open rates range from 28-40%, with an average of about 33%—meaning that roughly one-third of the subscriber base is likely to see your ad. The Advertising Is Good For You blog tracks these statistics from DoubleClick . The average CT

WMC Opens up marketing tips section.

Do you have something helpful to share with others interested in digital marketing? If so, WebMarketCentral wants to post your piece.  Just write it up and send it with art for evaluation prior to it being approved for publishing.  As a reward for sharing your tips and advice you will receive a backlink to your website.  The current value of the link is below from Ahrefs.com Quidelines:  Blog Post should be written to provide answers to questions that other marketers or small business have.  Blog Posts should be about 700 words or more.  The piece must be spelled checked and if reference data is provided it must be attributed and linked to the original piece. Do not try to load the price with links to your properties. More Details will follow shortly. Mike Bannan

Salesforce.com's "No Software" Mantra: More Effective Than They Know

From its beginnings, Salesforce.com has emphasized its online delivery model with its "No Software" positioning, even snagging 1-800-NO SOFTWARE as its toll-free line. While the application service provider (ASP) or software-as-a-service (SaaS) model in general has never lived up to its initial hype, among consumers or business users, Salesforce.com has enjoyed impressive success with it. While the company's success with sales and marketing users is hardly news at this point, I was surprised in doing some research recently at how successful the No Software campaign has been among another group: enterprise software developers. Salesforce.com has apparently succeeded at making "software" a nasty word for many of these firms, almost like a racial slur or a misogynistic anachronism not to be uttered in polite company. For example, Synopsys , a developer of electronic design automation software, doesn't produce software at all according to either its home page