While PR and marketing continue to act as separate disciplines in many organizations, there will be many major advances this year in uniting the once distinct departments.
With hundreds of millions of online users already on various social networks, not to mention Facebook’s audience of more than 1 billion users, a massive amount of marketing data has been acquired in recent years. Big data, as marketers call it, has redefined how marketing and PR practitioners analyze and interpret their target audiences and market segmentation.
If organizations continue to focus its social media efforts on one single department, big data will be too overwhelming for that particular team and it needs to incorporate those efforts to several departments in order to create the best possible marketing solutions.
Besides the issues associated with big data, marketers have recognized the significance of online user experiences. PR practitioners have the greatest understanding of what an organization’s publics demand in their online experience, which would provide an exceptional contribution to the success of an organization’s latest online campaign.
Last year’s buzzword of content marketing will remain relevant this year as marketing and PR practitioners strive to create online content not just for a target audience but also for particular individuals. With customer satisfaction becoming a primary objective for several departments, departments can no longer work separately when they all have common goals.
From a PR perspective, PR practitioners will need assistance from marketing, graphic design, customer service, sales, legal and HR departments in order to create the optimal experience for a practitioner’s various online publics. PR practitioners with a background in conventional media will struggle to maintain an organization’s online relevance in a landscape dominated by visual and mobile content. By eliminating the silos of most organizations, PR practitioners will now have access to alternative forms of graphic design, metrics and innovation that would benefit the department.
While ideally marketers and PR practitioners should work together to complete common objectives, it should be the primary duty of the PR practitioner to establish communications with his or her online audience. As communication experts, PR professionals know how to establish the right tone and narrative and tailor it to specific publics.
Social media has created a two-way symmetrical channel of communications that allows online users to immediately deliver feedback to an organization. Since PR manages public perception, it is a PR practitioner’s job to determine the best method of communication with online users especially if it entails negative feedback.
Because of social media, marketing business models are in constant flux and the most successful organizations in this time of transition will be the ones that accept cross-functional teamwork. The best approach is an innovative approach, and marketing and PR practitioners understand how important it is to be ahead of the curve in the current media landscape. With more executives realizing the significance of online marketing and many firms and agencies already adopting this form of marketing communications, this will be the year in which marketing and PR practitioners will finally come together as social media becomes more prevalent.
Twitter: @jenerationy “The Top Six Digital Marketing Trends for 2013” http://www.imediaconnection.com/content/33374.asp
Twitter: @jenniferpbrown “The Integration of Public Relations: Can’t We All Just Get Along” http://comprehension.prsa.org/?p=5207
Twitter: @patrickcoffee “Will PR ‘Own’ Social Media in 2013” http://www.mediabistro.com/prnewser/will-pr-own-social-media-in-2012_b53894
Twitter: @sandrafathi “Six PR and Social Media Predictions for 2013” http://www.ragan.com/Main/Articles/6_PR_and_social_media_predictions_for_2013_45962.aspx#
Twitter: @sandrafathi “Should Old Trends Be Forgotten?: 2013 Predictions for PR and Social Media http://www.prsa.org/Intelligence/Tactics/Articles/view/10020/1071/Should_old_trends_be_forgotten_2013_predictions_fo