You’re Not In PR Or Media, You’re In Both
Some media people might not like this concept and not all PR people will get it. But guess what – you’re no longer in PR or media. You are in both.
All PR pros need to be fluent in modern media
Not just in the sense of crafting stories to earn placements for clients. That’s all well and good, but borrowing trust and credibility from other channels as part of a PR program without any end funnel to grow your own community is falling short of a modern communications approach.
Don’t get me wrong: I think earned media and pitching are still very important. But if you haven’t pivoted your communications to put an owned channel as a central hub you lack a place to build a community and nurture an audience long term. Most companies have things like corporate blogs but I still don’t think they have the right mindset. Think about how few of them have built up a sizable, relevant audience vs. those who are too afraid to do anything interesting and work on it “when they have the time.”
Do you keep using the same resources to reach the same audiences through advertising spends or tasking your PR team? Why? If you were really being strategic, you would use their time to help grow your own community and build true leverage in the world. You can easily break your own news these days and go direct to consumer, but only if you embrace being media by placing owned channels at the hub of your efforts.
All media need to be PR savvy
This is a hard pill to swallow, but the reality is media need to become PR savvy too. That’s because we live in a world where every company is a media company and it benefits your brand as a journalist, blogger or media outlet to have endorsements from other media outlets, companies and individuals. Further, more and more media are being accountable for the success of their content socially.
A few savvy media outlets even have people on their teams like John Boitnott who basically act as a consultant to all of their content creators and help them create and promote ideas that spread. In a world of infinite choice, media need to create content that has organic legs. Concurrently, they need avenues of promotion and a community to share it.
But I shouldn’t even have to separate these things into two sections. PR pros and media sophisticated in their approach are both pursuing the same goals.