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Traditional PR

Even though the new form of public relations is emerging, you can’t forget about the traditional tactics. A survey done by Jennifer Leggio of ZDNet questioned company leaders on their public relations agencies. Her purpose of the survey was to find out if social media was really what the clients wanted. She also wanted to find out exactly which agencies are developing social media programs.  One conclusion she came to was that traditional public relations should still be the main focus for clients. Her survey results stated that clients did not find it necessary to use social media. They prefered the traditional means of public relations to publicize their businesses. Another conclusion she made from her survey results was that clients wanted to be educated on social media. They are still skeptical on exactly what social media is and how it can be used for public relations purposes.  81 percent surveyed said they would attend a social media training workshop. For Leggio’s full report click here.

Aspects of public relations that will never go away: press releases, print ads, commercials and research.

Although many pubic relations agencies are sticking to the traditional form of PR, others are incorporating digital media. They are still creating press releases but are now sending them through e-mail and websites.

I think a combination of the two is useful for public relations purposes. You will always run across clients that prefer the traditional public relations and it will become important for you to be able to use that form. If you are planning to continue in the public relations field you will need to make sure you understand the social media aspects. It is going to be a tough trend to keep up with. Websites such as Facebook and LinkedIn add to the public relations sphere. They are websites aimed at forming relationships and connecting with people, which is essentially what public relations is for. The digital side of public relations will only help improve the traditional techniques. Digital cameras make photography instant, e-mail makes press releases easier to send to multiple people and social media makes connecting with people easier.

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Reasons to use social media

Social Media is becoming a well-known tool in the public relations field. Through my research I compiled a list of reasons to use social media:

1. Social media is cheaper – Pretty much any social media website you plan to use is free.

2. Social media allows better targeting – Some social media sites make you approve who sees your profile. This gives you better control over who you share your information with. Facebook and Twitter are known for this.

3. Social Media is fashionable – It’s like a fashion trend that will be around for a long time. Even the most highly respected people use it.

4. Social media can reach a wide audience – Not only is it mostly free, but you can widen your target range. You will only reach so many people with a television commercial, but with social media you can reach audiences all over the globe.

5. Social media interacts with SEO – You can use keywords to make your company profile stand out from the others.

6. Social media creates long-term relationships – Social media gives you the opportunity to share your news and updates with your followers for the long term.

7. Social media allows for customer service and feedback – You can get in contact with the consumer immediately through social media. Your goal is to maintain a positive relationship with the consumer.

8. Social media creates brand loyalty – Updates on the newest brands, coupons and sales keep your customers coming back for more.

9. Social media is versatile – You can pick from a variety of sites: Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, FourSquare. If you just want people to follow you, Twitter might be your pick. If you want people to interact and advertise, Facebook would be a good tool.

10. Social media allows you to help others out – Follow other people and post interesting articles and links that your followers might find interesting.

11. Social media allows you to promote in a short and brief post – It will amaze you what 140 characters will do for your business.

In conclusion, it is time for everyone in public relations to jump on the social media bandwagon. It has a lot of good qualities that will make your promotion and interaction with customers a little more personal. If you are interested in more information on social media click here.

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Landing a job!

As crazy as it may seem, companies are looking to hire social media experts, however; don’t let this job title fool you. You won’t be playing on Facebook and Twitter all day.  With the social media world booming and public relations clinging to the changes you can expect to find wanted ads for digital public relations consultants or social media specialist. What does a person have to do to land one of these jobs? In a story on Mashable by Stephanie Marcus called HOW TO: Land a Career in Digital Public Relations, she provides us with a list of tips to help public relations professionals land the job. She starts by explaining that today’s public relations is quickly conforming to the ways of social media. Many public relations programs do not include digital and social media, so it is a good idea to find classes that will incorporate those two things. She also suggests applying for as many internships as possible.  Next, Marcus suggests that the job seeker know the industry inside and out. You may have a Facebook and a Twitter, but that does not mean you are experienced in the industry. Becoming an active reader on blogs that discuss the industry isn’t a bad idea. Just because you know what is going on with social media now does not mean that you should not look into its future. Next, Marcus suggests being creative. You are not the only one applying for the job. You want to stand out from the crowd.  Create your own personal blog where you discuss the digital public relations trend. You can share this link with potential employers. Lastly, Marcus warns us to know where to draw the line. Do not add potential employers on LinkedIn or Facebook solely because you submitted your resume to their company. You want to come across as determined, not pushy. Do research on the company you are interested in. This should give you an idea of how relaxed the company may or may not be.

If you are interested in finding a job in the public relations field that is based around social media, here are a few skills employers are looking for:

  • Communication skills
  • Writing skills
  • Top-notch social skills
  • Enthusiasm

For a brief explanation of these tips and more tips on landing a social media job click here.

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Social Media – What is it?

Public relations is used daily by organizations and single individuals to promote and inform. In 1982 the Public Relations Society of America adopted a definition of public relations that is still accepted today: “public relations helps an organization and its publics adapt mutually to each other.” Public relations acts as a form of counseling, research, planning, analyzing and interpreting. But how does public relations mix with the social media and what exactly is the social media? Social media is not the newspapers people read or the radio talk shows they listen to, but can rather be described as an ever-changing, constantly updated news feed. Social media allows its viewers to immediately interact with each other. Two of the most well known social media sites are Facebook and Twitter, but social media does not just end with those. It can also include things like blogs, wikis and podcasts. How are these sites and others like them relevant to a public relations professional? It is simply another way to promote and enhance a client, and with smart phones being all the rage your latest tweet or post can go directly to your audience. Boomerang Digital Communications believes public relations and its relationship with social media is where the focus lies now and could possibly be the biggest cultural shift in decades. The days of the old public relations techniques are over. Social media allows real time feedback from your audience instantly. The Internet provides an opportunity to reach to an audience all over the world. That audience can monitor your clients every action 24 hours seven days a week. Unfortunately, not every public relations agency has caught on to this technique and it is sad to say but they do not know what they are missing out on. Now days, one can expect a potential client to ask about Internet savvies, meaning does one blog, Twitter or Facebook. Because the media industry is so rapidly adapting to this new form of public relations, the public relations individual will have to learn quick. If one majors in public relations and is not ready for this type of on-line work, get ready. As stated in an article on Social Media Explorer, social media is a method of communications and is public relations in the on-line world.

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