How you – yes, you – can raise them from the dead
The new year is right around the corner and it’s time to get in touch with our healing powers. How many times do we have to rehash this argument anyway? PRSA (Public Relations Society of America) is hurriedly connecting life-support by attempting to revive and redefine PR. Seriously? PR has had more lives than Felix the cat and, in fact, does anyone really care if PR in its original form has to die a terrible death?
I’m just going to say it – PR is not dead. But, it must reinvent itself. Some believe PR has been reinvented through social media… as social media. But let’s get one thing clear – New PR is not Social Media. And even if it was, unfortunately, social media is also, well, dead. Social media too has run its course – it has been pulled away from its “social” roots and is also in need of its own resurrection. Dear friends, let us not mourn for the loss of PR and social media for we are the guilty. We have turned social media into no more than a tool to shove our products, marketing messages and opinions down the throats of our once loyal friends and followers. And because we haven’t been good stewards of the medium the relationships are dying and so is the medium.
What happened to the conversations? Where are the relationships? Having a Facebook page or a Twitter account just isn’t going to cut it – we are going to have to work harder to add value, create a buzz and form relationships (just like in real life). Social media is, after all, building relationships through meaningful conversation and in essence being “social”. The same goes for “public” relations – creating valuable and loyal relationships with your public. You can’t have a conversation with something that’s dead. So, how are You breathing life back into this beast?
As publicists it is time we look forward into 2012 with this as our #1 resolution – the breath of life: Integrate.
But how? First, Stop holding onto the past. The traditional foundations of PR and marketing are not being called into question here – we had to know the rules in order to break them… or expand them. So let’s start expanding. Second, we need to stop fighting with each other… this traditional vs. new media tug-o-war. Can’t we all just get along? Give up the fight! Integrate! (Yes, that was two exclamations in a row.)
We have to begin working hand in hand with each other. Marketing, sales, advertising, analytics, development, communications – online and traditional… It doesn’t matter if you’re a small start-up or a publicly held corporation, the road to success is paved with integration. Sharing is caring and this year is the year. Just do it!
And while we’re at it learn to do it better and faster (this is resolution #2) – time is of the essence. Publicists and marketers no longer have the luxury of time. The future of PR, marketing and media is real-time. Think, react, respond, relate – instantly… or risk being left for dead.
We will not mourn for you, beloved traditional PR and young Social Media, but instead we will celebrate your resurrection and transformation into something new and beautiful – something loved and nurtured. In 2012 let’s all resolve to evaluate, manage, communicate, execute, socialize, strategize, analyze, identify, engage, market, and disseminate as we all join hands and sing kumbaya… together. From social media to multimedia, PR to marketing, mobile to print, SEO, CRM, web, e-mail and everything in between. can you feel the love?