Is traditional PR dead? No, but it may be hard to recognize these days.
“In the last ten years, what was called public relations has gone through a radical transformation,” said Joy Scott, CEO and founder of Scott Public Relations, an award-winning boutique PR firm specializing in healthcare and technology. “Companies that may think it’s about pitching the media are missing that a proliferation of PR tactics must be deployed to achieve the desired results.”
Experts in building thought leadership for healthcare executives and physicians for decades, Scott PR has been incorporating creative and social media strategies into its service line for some time. Now the agency has formalized these capabilities into two distinct divisions: marketing and creative services and digital/social media communications.
“We pioneered a successful approach to B2B social media five years ago, and we constantly refine that approach to get the best results,” noted Scott. “Today, communications have to be visceral, visual, and vibrant to make the desired impact. That means amplifying the message in a relevant and compelling way in all communications channels. Integration is key. That’s why we’ve expanded our core competencies and added the expertise to create and implement comprehensive campaigns for our clients.”
The experts at Scott PR have identified the following five trends for companies to consider in their 2017 PR plans:
- Distinguish between “brand journalism”—telling your story in a journalistic way—and the PR required to gain earned media exposure. Companies today have to do both. Media expects that you tell your own story; brand journalism is a way to do so in a story-driven, visually-driven way that is far more engaging than marketing-speak. However, for original media coverage, reporters need news. If company developments or accomplishments are market-making or industry disruptive, or tied to a major trend or issue, they can be news. Otherwise, journalists view most company-driven stories as marketing. With that said, media interviews are always opportunities for a skilled spokesperson to weave those company messages into the interview. And brand journalism initiatives can spark media interest with a skilled PR approach.
- Secure earned media (media relations and traditional PR) and then amplify the message through relevant channels and platforms, including via video, digital, social, online, print, events, company publications and speeches.
- If you are a B2B organization, set up a proactive campaign to engage with opinion leaders and influencers through social media and sharing content. “Influencer marketing” is the buzzword in the B2C world and in many interpretations it means paying influencers to write about you. In the B2B arena, that is also an option. But the greatest value is to engage influencers in your cause, your innovation, your united direction toward the future. Media, of course, are influencers, and they should be on your influencer list.
- Publish or perish. “Content creation” is now accepted as part of the PR arsenal. However, it does not equate to “marketing speak.” Your content must be relevant to the reader, educational in nature, and interesting. Going up the content food chain, books are at the apex and can be leveraged for national visibility, especially with media who are forever intrigued by authors.
- Leverage PR for search engine optimization to capture that important top position in organic search. Relevant content is one of the few ways to drive organic SEO today.
This news was previously published on the Scott Public Relations website; reprinted with permission.