The impact social media is having on the field of marketing is inescapable. KnowThis.com is certainly part of a large crowd that has advocated the need for marketers to be fully engaged in social media. This can be seen from our post a few weeks ago in which we discussed how understanding social media has grown to be such a critical component of marketing that, in some ways, it has become as essential as understanding how to use Excel.
While social media is an undeniable force across all marketing areas, it would be a mistake to conclude it has had an equal impact. The fact is, while those responsible for such areas as distribution and personal selling may use social media in a general way, such as sending out announcements, there are other areas of marketing where social media has significantly transformed how things are done. And maybe the most impacted area is public relations (PR). For instance, as we discussed back in February, social media is changing the goals of PR, such as moving it away from being primarily a relationship building function to taking on a more promotional role.
This story from the Philadelphia Inquirer provides even more insight on the ways social media is impacting PR. As the story title suggests, social media has forced PR to change media relations strategies. Before social media, efforts in media relations were primarily directed at print, television, radio and a few online news sites. Now, the influence of bloggers and other persuasive individuals is changing who PR views as being important.
Additionally, PR is now becoming much more involved in creating content and strategies for a company’s or client’s own social media platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. And this has led to PR careers for people with not just communications, graphic design, and journalism skills but also Internet technology and research expertise. This is evident in the need for people who can interpret the information provided by online “social media listening” tools PR professionals are using to monitor what is going on in the social media world.