Business of PR &Michigan Positive &Social Media &Technology PR Insights 11 Jul 2008 04:12 pm

Changes in PR Technology

CEO of Eiler Communications Larry Eiler gave a presentation at Eastern Michigan University entitled PR in Marketing: How the Lines Are Blurring as Technology Grows as a Driver. Here is a brief recap…
I. PR in the Marketing Mix
• PR has always been a key component of any quality marketing program
• It has some inherent advantages that gain it recognition as an authoritative independent source
• Third-party veterans of user, analysts
• It use to be one separate element in the mix
• Now it is everywhere because technology has made a new breed of journalist
• The content may be used in any marketing technique
• The Lines between advertising PR and other techniques have blurred
• A company’s reputation depends on trust. Truthful PR stories can build that credibility


After this, Larry discussed how the ways people gather information/news has evolved over time and how technology has affected it. When people are looking to gather news/information in today’s day and age they use things such as the internet, (ask, yahoo, google, (other search engine) newspapers, magazines, radio, TV, word of mouth, etc. The way people do research and gather info has evolved over time, people do not have to go to libraries now to find information, they are using a variety of forms of social media that are accessible from most peoples homes and now even cell phones and PDA’s. A social media survey was taken, in which the participants had to rank social media on a level of importance (1 being the most important and 5 the least). The top three forms of social media that ranked the most important were Podcasts (3.9), Social book marking sites (3.6), and Blogs (3.2). These changes in social and e-media have caused positive changes in PR technology, ranging from the incorporation of blogs on their own or clients websites to podcasts and other forms of technology.

II. What the future may hold for traditional media and sources of information
• Print Media
1. Will not merely disappear
2. Will morph into something else to deliver information
3. Many of these media already have web sites and “e” media
4. Will adjust to what the market is becoming
5. Printouts for all media will lessen because of cost, the green movement and news technologies that favor rapid response. Printing costs are a big driver for change.

• Radio
1. Radio will remain solid because devices like IPods make it easy to access
2. Things will go digital
3. PDF’s will increase
4. Online information will be accessible for cell phones

• Technology and traditional media
1. There will not be any single “next big thing”
2. Technology moves in incremental steps and will evolve over time.
3. Traditional media will adjust to and loose ground to new media because there are so many forms of new media.
4. The key element is for people to learn them and be able to use them effectively to get what they need.
5. Example: Mainframe computers to timesharing to client/server to personal computers to the Internet.

III. PR in Integrated Marketing Communications
• Third party credibility from PR outweighs ads
• People tend to believe what news they read, not paid ads
• PR has high ROI
1. One client in 2006 had $8.4 million in media coverage, which gave an ROI of 18 times
2. Another paid $1,400 in PR fees for a product introduction that garnered $17,950 worth of media coverage

IV. Blog Credibility
• Consistent Uploading
1. Weekly; bi-weekly
2. Same message throughout
• Links to Other Blogs
1. Blogs linking to you and you linking to other blogs
• Company and Media Recognition
1. Blogger’s Choice Awards
2. Reference in the Times, Wall Street Journal, etc.
• Executive Posts
1. GM Fast Lane

V. Internet Negativity
• Negative posts from consumers
1. Backlash from a new product
2. Overall Criticism
• Acknowledge and apologize
1. Offer Direct apologies
2. State Solutions or an alternate point of view

VI. Examples of Emedia Growth
• IDG $3 billion global publisher
• 300 newspapers & magazines
• Computer World, PC World, Info World, Network World, CIO, Digital World & Mac World
• Events-750 in 55 Countries
• Research-provides market intelligence
• Online- 450 websites, 200 writes, and Tech news
• For IT- Telco & Consumer Tech
• Was all print, now online specialty publisher
• Half of $3 billion revenue from print
1. Was 25% four years ago
2. Forecast to be 70% by 2012
• InfoWorld closed print version and now 100% online
• Datamation did the same thing four years ago
• IDG does online titles first (Goes to print version if market demands

Why is Social media different from traditional PR/Marketing Tactics? It is an open conversation, with the changes in PR technology readers are now able comment on your activities and expect you to respond. Companies of any size can compete equally. Some crucial points that were made with the statistics of social media were that 66% of Americans trust blogs for their product recommendation. 1 of 4 Americans has a Myspace page and the average Facebook user logs in six times/day (20,000 new members each day). Companies and firms are now incorporating sites such as these into their marketing scheme due to their high volume of daily traffic.
Some may ask what do business people need from new/social media? The answer is confidence that the info is correct and that the info could potentially help business decisions.

VIII. Publishing A Beginning Not an End
• Shift from print to online changes assumptions about marketing and publishing
• Publishing is a starting point, not the ending point
• Publishers carefully get research and verify information (It is edited, then published)

IX. Online Media is the Opposite
• A story may expand and enlarge a reader (participants)
1. Add their comments and theories with a blog post, podcast, or other online contribution
• Messages are no longer one-way. Your audience contributes to expanding your content
• It is like a dialogue, a conversation

X. IT Professionals and Social Networking
• 77% of IT professionals in 430 Fortune 1000 companies use social networking
• 42% Three time/week
• 35% One time/week
• 22% not active
• Demonstrating rapidly increasing numbers of IT professionals using social sites to get and share information, network and communicate fast

XI. So where is all this going?
• Evolutionary change is a fact
• If you want to be part of getting information efficiently, these new was to do it are imperative.
• Conversation has become a norm for journalism
• People are trying to reach specific groups and targets-not masses.
• Everyone wants “instant gratification of information”
• New techniques and devices: Kindle- from Amazon
1. No carrying books, magazines or newspapers
2. Can be delivered to you in one minute when you buy for $10
3. Holds hundreds of books, newspapers, blogs

• All ways to access information is changing
• No longer news organizations with large staffs, reporters and editors who cover beats and generate news based on their areas
• Rather we have a sea change in the ways info is generated and disseminated
• In many ways new outline media have already supplemented traditional news media (e.g. blogs, podcasts, video social media)
• Like the Industrial Revolution, but this is the Information Revolution
• People are more interested to reach audiences directly and have discussions, conversations, than get info from mass media

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