Let’s face it, traditional PR services are changing; making way for a digital first approach to many PR Agency service offerings. One of the interesting things about current changes is we see them from a time-lapse view more and more. Social media and the internet have catapulted the pace, and we must learn to adapt. Here are some of the latest PR trends we’ve noticed:

PR agencies are becoming integrated. Good firms these days are integrated – doing PR & marketing.  Some successfully focus on just one or a few fields of specialization, like crisis communications or public affairs, but most firms need PR, marketing, and social media skills in-house at a bare minimum. Outsourcing these can prove difficult unless you know those you contract with have an innate understanding of your clients and what they need. Beyond that, compartmentalizing can be dangerous with the immediate nature of social media. If your people can’t see the full picture, they cannot respond in real-time effectively.

Traditional and social media – at this point, these too have become blended. Traditional media sources also have websites where they run content. Traditional print media is expensive to produce by comparison, and fewer people are willing to pay to receive information in print they have immediate access to on the internet. Because of social media, they don’t even have to go looking for information. Big data has made major inroads to social media, and if you’ve expressed a recent interest in a topic, your newsfeed will probably show you more information on that topic to click and read.

Find a way to bring big data services to clients. Learn how it works and it offers. Big data is used for much more than sales pitches, it can save big money for clients in utility fees when they have several properties, or manage health care issues. Those are not traditionally PR or marketing concepts, but it doesn’t hurt to know how to save your clients money, so they have more to spend on marketing.

Sometimes in the volume of information available it is easy for PR professionals and those affiliated with the business to temporarily forget their job is to provide the client with what they want. Usually that’s to increase target audience awareness of their product or service and entice customers to purchase what they offer. That remains constant in PR, but the methods of accomplishing that goal keep changing, morphing, rearranging into new ideas and approaches.

The need for creative and innovative thinkers also remains constant. People who can spot the trends, and dive in with approaches to set their agency apart from all the followers. When your people know how to see what’s on the horizon and how to use that information for building brand awareness and sales for clients, PR matters more.