There is no doubt that in the past few decades the internet has transformed the way public relations professionals do their jobs. Lately, social media has been leaving its footprint on the PR field as well. Mashable interviewed 14 PR pros on the future of public relations and how they see social media changing the industry. Here is a summary of what they had to say:
–The press release: There is an increasing shift towards the social media release. Experts agreed that press releases need a social element now so that viewers can comment or share them with their social networks. Many are also experimenting with distribution channels, including contacting journalists on Twitter and even directing them to YouTube clips. There are many alternatives to the traditional press release, which may be beneficial for reaching out in certain situations or to certain audiences. Examples of alternatives can be seen here.
–Social platforms: The most important platforms will be the ones most targeted to clients, making Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn important, but niche, industry specific networks of greater value. Measuring and monitoring the effectiveness of these tools will become more critical in the future, especially in finding out what happens to your message once it gets out there.
–Networking: Social media is driving relationships in the independent PR community. Independent PR professionals can share and get advice from one another through social media networking.
–Saving money: Social media has the ability to save companies a lot of money by enhancing traditional and online campaigns. It can also save time for PR professionals by yielding higher response rates to pitches.
–The human factor: This is the most important factor because public relations and social media are both about creating and fostering relationships. It is essential to remain relevant and engage friends, fans and followers.
How do you think social media will affect the future of public relations?