Corporate Communications – How it Was v. How it is

5WPR News
corporate communications 17.03.16

Just taking a look at where we are today when a PR Agency arranges to have his client do an interview for publication. The interesting thing is that how it was, was not really that long ago. We’ve seen massive changes in all areas of media, content, and how PR is done effectively even in the last 5-10 years. So, how it used to be and how it is now…

When an interview was arranged between a client and a journalist, the PR specialist had to wait to learn the result, did they love the client, or did they skewer him to the proverbial wall? It took at least until the next day, maybe even a month, depending on how often the publication was published. Now, often almost immediately after the conclusion of the interview … yep, tweet tweet – the writer will post a preview to cause enough buzz to build the number of readers who make it to the posting. And those tweets offer indications on the slant of the article to come.

Previously monitoring the media for clients was a job that could be done first thing in the morning and then it was finished for the day, or at least, until evening papers hit the streets. Now, it’s become almost a constant job. Of course, tools like Google Alerts make it easier, but still, a story could break at any hour on any day.

Before, PR people and their staff established relationships with the few, the proud, the journalists and editors. They were reasonably aware of what was needed by the other and how to best present to get a good outcome. Today, anybody with an iPhone, tablet, laptop or desktop computer can talk about your client and what they offer. An article in the Huffington Post or other well-known site will be rewritten, revamped, spun from a different angle, and looked at from every possible position making each article unique and needing only a minimum of research. And all those articles may show up within less than 24 hours.

It used to be more expensive and time-consuming to learn if a campaign worked or not. Now, with all the tools, analytics, social media responses, etc., a firm can learn sometimes within hours if a campaign is working and what tweaks could send results through the roof.

Way back when (or not so way back), product launches were more generic and catered to industry leaders and journalists assigned to that field. Today, every product is marketed to a specific customer base, so product launches need to include those who write for those customers rather than an industry.

Along with the above changes, PR and marketing are becoming more one group instead of the ad men and the PR people in separate companies. They work more cohesively and in the process, most agree their efforts have become sleeker. The messages more targeted to fit a particular type of customer. This integration has improved both sides of the equation. They are still separate types of work, but when they work together, the PR campaign enhances the ad campaign and vice-versa.

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