In a recent study done by ING, it was reported that 81% of PR professionals feel they can no longer do their job without social media. 78% of them felt it was important to their daily work. On the flip side, 78% of journals feel they can no longer do their job without social media. 50% of them admit that when they use social media, they do not feel the need to fact-check.
These statistics show just how much impact social media has had on the public relations industry from a statistical view, but what about the day to day changes social media has made in the working world of PR? There are a few key areas you may find interesting.
More direct contact with people. Social media means that interaction with people – customers is a much more direct path. And with the various marketing tools available through platforms like Facebook, both public relations and advertising can be specifically targeted for your unique customer base. Even further, the more you interact with your target audience, the more your social media posts will be seen by your audience. Social media provides the means to save money when trying to reach your people because you won’t be paying for people who aren’t interested to see your stories.
Creating unique and engaging content. Let’s face it, the hunger for content that is different from anything else and that grabs the reader’s attention is increasing every day. With the ease of opening an account on any number of social media platforms as well as creating a blog – everyone looks for stories that create a bond with their audience. And if possible, these stories have not been told before. PR is no longer able to shoot out the same story for every journalist to use. But, the good news is that when you get this right, the entire world can start sharing your article for you.
Integrating services. Because social media comprises so many elements, it is forcing many different PR firms to broaden the scope of their organizations. PR agencies are integrating advertising people, digital marketing people, and big data specialists into their teams to provide a complete package for their customers. Gone are the days when most PR firms stuck strictly to PR work. That is because social media efforts require the full team.
Social media is not going away, in fact, you can expect its impact to increase over time. You’ll need to think bigger, do more, and constantly look for those stories that can become game-changers in your business and for your clients, that is the future of PR work.