Times have changed for PR. Technology influenced this shift, which has been gradual until recently. At the center of more rapid change is none other than Donald Trump.
Like him or hate him, POTUS has gone where no president has ever gone before: he communicates directly with his audience and manages his own social media accounts. This drives some journalists crazy and some might believe the new way of engaging almost exclusively through social media will eventually kill journalism.
Not to worry. Journalism will likely become more important than ever. Here's why: fact-checking, fact-checking and more fact-checking.
Today, people rely on brands' online presence for information but they depend on good, old-fashioned journalism for truth. Sure, the media is changing but if anything, the savviest consumers are truth-seekers.
This is why it's critical to foster an maintain ongoing relationships with the media: journalists, reporters, editors, producers, you name it. And press releases are an integral part of your brand's ability to share its story through a credible mouthpiece.
Have press releases changed?
In a word, no. I just read "The New Rules of Marketing & PR" by David Merman Scott. The version I read was the book's fourth edition (2013) so it's somewhat outdated but not for the purpose of this topic.
Scott devoted an entire chapter to press release writing, and admitted that industry professionals have criticized his philosophy to write directly to the consumer and take advantage of online platforms to disseminate press releases as well as sending them to journalists.
I tend to agree with the critics. Any discerning audience knows the value of reporting and understands the difference between a feature in an established news source—whether online, on television or in print—versus a puff piece submitted to a pr website.
Contrary to what many believe, Millennials aren't an elusive group. In fact, we're pretty simple: we just have different values than the most recent generations before us. Our priorities have shifted. Mass media and technology have shaped who we are.
Some argue that Millennials have driven the changes in marketing but that can't be true as we merely adapted to the changes we saw growing up. In other words, Millennials aren't the diagnosis, we're the symptom.
Today more than ever, customers use the internet for everything from shopping to learning about your brand. That's why it's critical to be customer-focused and know how to manage your organization's online reputation. Most companies need a stellar website with excellent content, as well as high impact social media campaigns to thrive in today's market.
This barber shop gets it: you don't need a big budget to create a big impact. Wise Guys Haircuts, wherever you are, we salute you.