3 Ways Social Media is Impacting the Public Relations Industry
December, 05 2017
We are living in a connected world, a world where most rely on social media platforms to get their latest news. According to a recent PEW Research Center study, in 2017 two-thirds of U.S. adults received news from social media sites, predominantly Twitter.
Social media has affected not only how we consume news but how we engage with one another. For businesses, social media has become the new content distribution model, disrupting not only the nature of brand marketing, but also public relations strategies.
Gone are the days of traditional public relations, when developing brand awareness and visibility solely depended on press releases and cold calls to relevant media. Social media has changed the rules of the game, making it easier to amplify a brand’s reach, publicity efforts and media outreach on a global scale.
Today, PR firms must be disruptive and innovative, utilizing the power of social media to maintain a brand’s voice and online reputation through promotional content and consistent engagement. To better understand this transformation, here are three ways social media is impacting public relations initiatives:
1. Audience Reach
When it comes to audience reach, writing and distributing press releases is still a prominent and useful promotional tactic for content distribution and news coverage. If a media pitch is successful, press releases offer additional details and information journalists can endorse to audiences via broadcast, print and online channels.
Social media, however, gives brands the power to relieve a bit of this dependency and release news more frequently outside of local media outlets. By posting relevant content and utilizing visual aesthetics such as photos and videos, businesses are able to expand their audience reach, engage with their followers and measure traction. Social media offers a great platform for public relations firms to boost their client’s opinions, promote relevant content and offer commentary on the latest news and trends.
2. New Editorial Opportunities
Social media platforms, like Twitter, have become modern-day newsrooms. PR professionals can utilize these channels to find and segment new journalists by interest and industry focus. Most journalists are highly active on social media, often utilizing it as a search tool for interviews and expert commentary to support their latest story assignments.
Not only can sites like Twitter help PR professionals build their rolodex of media contacts, it can also result in new editorial opportunities for their clients, placing their brand and expertise in front of a larger audience.
3. Crisis Management
If there’s one thing a business dreads to hear and deal with, it’s a crisis. No matter the magnitude of a controversy, how and when a business responds can either boost or severely damage their reputable image.
By identifying potential crisis scenarios and preparing holistic approaches, PR professionals can employ social media in interim, to offer an immediate statement on behalf of their clients until an official assessment of the situation is made. An online presence following a crisis is necessary to not only monitor feedback and complaints, but to maintain a brand’s reputable image overall.
Overall, knowing how to use social media is an essential component to having a successful public relations campaign. Without it, you miss valuable opportunities for your brand and your message. Don’t forego social media’s power in your PR campaign. If you want to know more about how you can leverage social media to impact your campaigns check out our website or get social with us. We are just a like, tweet, follow or connection away.
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