Despite the assertion of a recent ZDNet oped Public Relations professionals will indeed create content. There is no longer a filter for Google News which gives preference to old school media vs. a new school blog – Its all “news.” That goes for The Huffington Post or The Drudge Report, CNBC.com or The Daily Beast.
Trying to build a brand today is like giving a speech in a concert hall while the New York Philharmonic is playing Beethoven. A couple of people on the sidelines might notice you, but can they actually hear what you’re saying? Brands have to create their own content – or they are missing a huge opportunity.
Times have changed drastically. Around-the-clock cable news stations, social networks, newswires, bloggers, tweeters, and “Diggers.” In a sense, anyone with access to the Internet is in media as “citizen-journalists”, so naturally those of us working in public relations will create content. PR folks need to be tweeting, creating trends, and making videos that are able to reach millions within hours.
Pros are competing with or reacting to mommy bloggers, self-styled political pundits writing from their basements; and anyone in the street with a smart phone sending live messages and taking and uploading videos.
Want proof? The world’s most wanted man, Osama Bin Laden, was killed in a top-secret mission. Who broke the news of his death first? A random individual tweeting while on break from “big city” life got the news out before CNN, Fox, or any of the major networks. Keith Urbahn, chief of staff to former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, tweeted the following: “So I’m told by a reputable person they have killed Osama bin Laden. Hot damn.”
Everybody is a journalist now and we’re all in public relations – From civilians on the streets of the Middle East filming a revolution, to bar goers recording Dior designer John Galliano’s racist comments; to mommy bloggers deciding which juice box or diaper maker gets a time-out; broad swaths of the population are taking opinion and news making into their own hands.
The times they are a changing – as to succeed today brands have to work on many different fronts. So yes, expect to see Public Relations professionals need to – and will be – creating media.
About Ronn Torossian
Ronn Torossian is the Founder and CEO of 5W Public Relations. He is an experienced leader in the public relations industry with over 20 years of experience. Ronn Torossian has been named as Public Relations executive of the year by the American Business Awards, and has run countless award-winning Public Relations programs.