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Has Online PR Gotten Over the Traditional PR?
I have not been much of a computer geek myself. But for the past years, time has moved me forward to using the computer more often than I ever imagined for me to “interact” with the world. If I would not do this, I would probably ended up becoming a hermit distant to the technological advances in communications. All my friends, most of my close family members, and everyone that I know used the Internet to “interact”. I use the Internet to “interact” and to work. This is true to everyone. The Internet has become one of the fastest growing digital communications for humans to “interact”. The Internet is truly an “interactive network”.
So, is the word “interact” keeps going in your head now? You probably noticed that I have used this word several times on my last paragraph. I would like to emphasize that the Internet is primarily used to interact, in many ways or more (pardon me for the repetition but this will be the last).
The Internet has changed the nature of Public Relations in general. It somehow revolutionized PR into more than producing press releases moving out of the skirts of traditional strategies. I seemingly agree to that change (if you read my other articles on PR, I’ve got my comments on that). However, has PR really been totally revolutionized from tradition? What I mean in revolutionizing here is that to make itself (PR that is) free of old strategies and has changed differently from what has been known of it. Yes, it has revolutionized by parting from traditional PR, thus it has been called online Public Relations. But, the revolutionizing process is not complete yet. Online PR has not yet achieved being part of online communications. Public Relations online has not been totally attached to the nature of the Internet.
I repeatedly said the word before, thus, it is unnecessary for me to explain further the nature of the Internet. To get the discussion going on Public Relations and the Internet, the online PR industry has not yet reached the revolutionary process of going away from tradition because still up to this day online PR has not yet see the purpose of getting publicity through the Internet.
Most business sites who consult to an online Public Relations have a website designed mostly for “viewing” purposes. Once you get to browse these kinds of sites, you get to see the home page bombarded with lots of information on the company, their business partners, and a whole lot of information like news, essays, etc., regarding the product or services the company offers. Nothing is wrong with this one. But then again, this kind of site is still complete to think that this is posted on the Internet. The missing page here, and probably, the very thing that most PR online misses, is the readers’ or clients’ page where you get feedbacks one on one. I know I am generalizing here, but there are a few who are doing this kind of strategy now.
Still, a lot of online PR strategies “focused primarily on the press as a vehicle to take your messages to the public”. In addition Byron Reimus of Heyman Consulting say, “The Internet opens up huge opportunities for PR pros to do what we do best: build relationships. But, so far, the industry’s been slow to figure out how to do that effectively”.
The state of online PR to date is at a “sink-or-swim-stage”. Professionals in online Public Relations have not clearly seen yet the new skills that the Internet offers. One reason for this is that many (PR) agencies are so busy and successful (in doing the old way) that they ignored the Internet’s conversational impact.
Recent studies, too, showed various reasons why the industry of online Public Relations remained slow, if not stagnant, to changes. The result shows:
- Agencies are feeling no immediate pain to force change;
- PR is not leveraging the Internet as well as other industries;
- Most agencies view the Web as more tactical than strategic, though they acknowledge that
strategy will be key in the next few years;
- Clients are looking for more leadership;
- The notion of networked communications (the digital cocktail party) will change PR’s role and its
coinciding skill set; and
- Agencies view changes in the landscape as both negative and positive.
Getting to communicate with a client or reader is very crucial. The company will know directly the reactions of its consumers. This will provide not only a direct contact with the readers but also relationships will be built better. And most importantly, communicating directly to online readers will create better ideas regarding the products and services offered through surveys and suggestions.
About the Author: Mary Ann Carolyn "Mean" Dalangin-Tordecilla has a natural passion for writing. Since childhood, she spent most of her quiet times writing poetry and short novels. This hobby led her to pursue a writing course in college. During her university years, she has been a Dean’s Lister and has reaped several special awards. These awards include: Best Student Advocacy Award of the Catholic Mass Media Awards (CMMA) of 2003 in the student-group-made commercial titled Beinte Cinco; and Top Ten Notable Thesis in Journalism in her thesis work titled, A Study on the Violence in Disney's Film Adaptations of the Grimms' Tales and its Effect on the Anxiety Level of Children. She also became an active member in various university groups, specifically the media and politics. By 2005, she graduated at the University of Santo Tomas with a degree of AB Journalism.
Aside from being a full-time writer, she also loves beauty and the arts. She appreciates the works of the Impressionist artist Monet and loves to paint landscapes and seascapes. She also loves to do photography of people, where the theme centers on the spirit of realism. Aside from that she simply enjoys life and hangs out mostly on the dance floor or by the beach.
Check out her Online PR and Marketing blog.