The PR world is all about evolution; an agency must keep up with and adapt to an ever-changing playing field or they’re likely to become obsolete in the near future.
Clients used to be happy to hold a magazine or newspaper article in their hands. Oh, how times have changed! Now they are more concerned with domain authority and SEO. With the advent of the internet almost three decades ago, the variety of digital media has opened a plethora of communication channels into the market space, forever changing the face of PR.
Traditional Media Relations
Dating back to the time when public relations pioneer Edward Bernays was still leaving his mark on history, what was considered “Modern PR” is now viewed as traditional. The digital age has relegated these more traditional forms of media, like print and broadcast, to a lower rung in the public relations hierarchy, with some arguing that these forms of media are no longer relevant.
However, techniques and philosophies from traditional PR shouldn’t be forgotten. Having strong media relations and being able to pitch a story to the right media at the right time is more imperative now than ever, because of the over-saturation of the market.
Digital Media Relations
In 2018, we have 2.62 billion social media users worldwide, and that number is expected to grow by another half a billion by 2021. The number of audiences you can target with social media and digital platforms is astronomical. Added to which, the ability to communicate and engage directly with target audiences creates a more meaningful media exchange.
Any agencies not making the most of online media are going to fall behind. It’s time to step up and learn how to navigate the digital world. This includes more than just social media. One must now also understand domain authorities, the best data collection services, and search engine optimisation techniques. These are digital tools that one can use to benefit research and enhance deliverables to integrate into our existing practices.
The Perfect Mix
Why not have the best of both worlds? In a time so rich with media, why not use every single medium available at your disposal?
With the barrage of news pieces coming at us everyday, one must understand the media on a deeper level. With a solid knowledge of traditional public relations practices under your belt, and a digital understanding, you can now pitch topics of interest that you know the media is already starting conversations about, allowing you to give greater context or meaning.
You can track industry trends in headlines and analyze what people are talking about on various platforms and join the conversation to shape perception, spark dialogue and educate on industry topics.
Being successful with traditional public relations is not mutually exclusive with mastering digital PR. There is an amazing link between both practices that allows for huge publicity potential if done properly.