Be Technically Proficient, Before It’s Too Late

四月 11, 2013

The landscape of marketing services keeps evolving these years and so do public relations. PR professionals need to adapt to the ever-changing environment in order to survive tomorrow, if not today.

Here come the questions: what and how PR peoples should react to the megatrend? It’s good to start by asking ourselves the following 2 questions:

1. What is driving the demand for “next-gen” PR professionals?

Answered simply, it’s the evolution of PR that has occurred as result of the emerging digital trend and the fact that budget conscious clients are looking for integrated solutions.

Some times before you might still hear agencies saying that they offered only traditional PR since their clients didn’t embrace digital, didn’t find it useful etc. It’s no coincidence that these same clients are now the ones saying they have no hiring needs, and are not acquiring new business on the whole. In fact, many traditional agencies are losing new business to those incorporating social and digital into their campaigns, developing digital divisions, or working alongside with a digital agency, creative agency and an advertising agency to create holistic integrated campaigns. They don’t risk losing market share this way, and they get different types of minds weighing on PR campaigns, giving them an interesting spin.

2. What do the “next-gen” PR Professionals look like?

The PR professionals nowadays needs to be constantly aware of, and up-skilling in, social media and digital, and they must throw out the notion that the two are one in the same. Digital can cover a variety of channels including: mobile apps, mobile marketing, SEO, SEM, display advertising, email marketing, conversion optimization, analytics, etc. A superficial level of knowledge across these channels is no longer good enough.

While it’s not always necessary to have the in-depth skills to physically execute digital campaigns, PR professionals need to understand how and why we utilize these channels and how they work together in an overarching strategy for your client. Having said that, in recent months, we have witnessed an influx of clients looking for agencies who can execute digital campaigns using a variety of tools/software. Happy enough, Chilli is one of the agencies who successfully ride the tide.

How should PR agencies react to the trend?

The first step is to acknowledge that this change is very real, even if clients are not yet jumping on board. The rate of change is proven by the fact that 50% of the job titles that Firebrand recruited last year did not exist 3-5 years ago.

If you desire to learn more, take courses, or at least, keep yourself updated with news from mashable, techcrunch etc. There’s no excuse to be technically ignorance in front of clients, absolutely.