PR: The Original Content Marketing Recap

September 28th, 2015

by Rebecca Dutcher

Public Relations today is far more than news releases. Really, they are the reference point to a story – but it is the story that people connect with and engage with. News coverage or sharing by influencers in the social media space doesn’t start with your press release. It starts with building relationships, and maintaining them overtime.

The Internet has changed the jobs of PR professionals (and marketers) over the last 10 years. Brands and companies never had to worry about those who did not like their products/services having a voice – however, the invention of the Web changed all of that.

Robyn Luymes talked about how the web, influential bloggers and their voice forced brands to reevaluate the way they did business, their business practices and more. He pointed out a time when he worked for Amway, and people didn’t have Internet access. One person noticed a blogger who was talking negatively about the company, about their products. This blogger drove home the point that they needed to have access to the Internet, to monitor these conversations, respond either though communication with these people or respond through their own communications and messages.

One advantage we have as marketers and PR professionals, is that brands are now able to make changes in real time. There are many platforms to enable direct conversations with customers, journalists, bloggers and other influencers. You are able to utilize Google Alerts and monitor conversations taking place about your brand, your products, your employees – even competitors or key clients.

PR pros may have an “easier” job today in that organizations are (or should be) thinking longer term – about reasonable and viable brand stories. Therefore, executives and leaders are more aware of the importance of PR, brand stories and communication. Often making it an easier internal “sell” in the investment of PR & Marketing Communications support.

Consumer’s media consumption habits have changed.
How to we respond with our communications and story pitches?

In a time where we have cable cutters and ad blockers, public relations and marketing professionals need to develop strategic ways to connect with their customers and influencers. They aren’t seeing as many ads, and the news seems to find them.

The reporters companies used to pitch to are also disappearing. With consolidation of media companies, and addition of other channels for media outlets, it makes it hard for companies to tell their story via advertising and traditional public relations.

You tell your stories through blogs and areas on your website, on your social channels, on customer communications and where they are. Company blogs are a central part of fresh content, and telling your story – then share it through social channels and customer touch points.

What is  Brand Journalism?

Brand Journalism is a relatively new term. According to the 2013 newsroom report by Mynewsdesk, 98 percent of surveyed businesses have their own content writers or newsrooms. (Source: movement includes freelance writers, former reporters (who are looking to continue with their craft now on the brand side), photographers and videographers too. However, 35 percent of the brands surveyed failed in their consistency with brand journalism and didn’t produce newsworthy stories frequently enough to yield positive results. (Source) Brand journalists are creating content on behalf of organizations, brands, products and more. Remember, your content is words, photos, videos and infographics – not just words on the page. And it must be done consistently.

Share Your Thoughts

This is just one post of several from all of the great information and insights shared at our panel event. Look for more articles soon. Please share your questions and comments with us to keep the conversation going.