Public relations is on the march
New start-ups are coming to market with disruptive models and large networks are modernising their service model. Communication and public relations teams are reskilling and adding new talent.
The CIPR Social Media Panel published its report card for 2012 this week and put in place an ambitious plan for 2013. I’ve taken over as chair from Rob Brown.
We’re committed to continuing his drive on helping drive best practice and knowledge sharing among CIPR members and the wider publications industry.
Over the coming year the panel will focus its effort on Share This Too, a follow-up to the book it produced last year; updates to both its Best Practice and Wikipedia Guidelines; a specification for the skills for the future public relations practitioner; and guidance on social media and the law.
Fortunately the panel consists of some of the smartest people in the business.
The public relations industry is more confident than ever before in its proposition thanks to disciplines such as planning and measurement. We’re embracing new opportunities to sell integrated solutions, comprising creative, production and technology.
Social media and public relations are one of the same. That’s not just my view but it’s a view that is shared by some of the smartest people in the business, some of the individuals and organisations that are helping to define the future.
“The idea that social media is a specialist area must be immediately dispatched. The binary idea that something is digital or not is really unhelpful. Radio and television are both digital and analogue. It really doesn’t matter that some people, perhaps even a significant proportion will never use Twitter; some people don’t own a television. Public relations people need to understand the whole mix,” said Rob Brown, managing partner, Rule 5.
“The challenge is that this is a people business and some people are still struggling to make that adjustment. Media is now so broad, and its two-way influence so potentially strong, that public relations people need to be specialists in everything. There isn’t enough head space to do that, so smart teams are becoming a mix of specialists that plan integrated activity. The days of the social ghetto are numbered,” said Steve Earl, managing director, Zeno.
“I firmly believe an agency that is built for the social media economy can thrive, where everything starts with social, but the experience backing that up in each individual adds another dimension. The added dimension could be media relations, design, build, crisis communications, search, community management, video, you name it. We are turning the agency model upside down and re-building it from the bottom up,” said Drew Benvie, founder, Battenhall.
Benvie’s new business launches today. I wish him good luck. Not that he’ll need it.