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August 18, 2008


Yianni Garcia

#14 - Give brands a digital social life.


Very interesting post. However, I'm not too sure Digital will ever be more important than media for a PR pro. At the end of the day, we are at the will of our clients, and for them - media is king.

Personally, I agree that digital should be very important in the mind of a PR pro. At times I wonder if we in the digital space give it a little too much credit. Is it just as important for Health Care PR as it is for Tech PR?

Paula Thornton

I clearly have never been immersed in a deep marketing role. I would never have assumed that they would have been separated...and depending on the size of company one works for/with, they're not.

Michael Pranikoff


Thank you for this post and the collection of all of the other posts connected. Ogilvy has done a great job with the 360 Group and you've got a very talented team.

I really like to see that Digital and Strategy together make up 40% of the PR Pro's brain - if there image is reflecting correctly...I wonder how much you would say the two overlap. I'm happy to see that PR is growing, but in order to keep growing the industry needs to continue education. Not just education from panel discussions, but real "how to" sessions. We need to touch the young people coming in about strategy....but we need to teach the more experienced folks that are running the shops today about the digital....and each has to be willing to take part in learning.

Michael Pranikoff
Director, Emerging Media
PR Newswire

John Bell

@Yianni - I believe digital is changing all parts of our business BUT one of the big points of this post is to pull out OTHER CHANGES (aka non-digital) that I see happening or necessary, like being a great marketer, which brings me to...
@Paula - you're right in smaller companies the marketing and PR role is often the same, although different industries and businesses do it ...differently. I am thinking mostly of my experience with big companies in B2C and B2B. There has been a division between PR and Marketing (Advertising) that will likley go away as our tools for measurement become more sophisticated.


So agree with you, John. I get asked all the time if Social Media belongs in PR or with us at RTCRM. I always say it depends and I'm not interested in a turf war. I still think too many PR agencies only think "push the message," which is why I think that a Relationship Marketing agency is a good fit for social media. But...whenever I explain good blogger outreach to PR people they laugh because they know I'm actually talking about old school PR techniques.

Bobby McDonald

@Yianni I agree that media is still the current king for the PR professional but I disagree when you say that it will remain on top.

Newspapers are laying off employees quicker than banks and you can find almost any televised show on the internet. I recently read an article that said 95 of the top 100 newspapers in the country have blogs. Wow!


The fact that most PR professionals don't value digital mediums high enough is exactly why those groups focusing on this space are exploding in growth. This is just as important as traditional media and your domination within this space as a PR professional is worth fare more than the saturated traditional media space.

- Richard
Richard Wilson

John Bell

@Richard - I think a lot of PR pros are taking this space pretty seriously. If you were at the PRWeek Next Conference last week, you would have seen the most senior folks in the industry talking digital, digital, digital...


Sorry, a little late to the discussion on this one.

@CarlenLea "Relationship Marketing" Um, that's public relations.

Love it when marketers try to define "the new marketing" when all they're describing is PR. :-)

Melanie Thompson

I'd like to follow-up to an earlier post that says our clients believe traditional media is king. It is our job as PR professionals to educate our clients on the benefit of tradition versus digital PR coverage. For some clients, traditional methods will prove to be the best because they still reach their target audience. However, as digital becomes even more people's primary method of news, we have to be able to direct our clients in that direction. There is no "this way or no way" because things change for each client.

Trevor Young - Consultant | Author | Speaker

Love the graphic John - certainly a great way to easily show the world what we do! Looking at the areas a PR pro covers, no wonder so many in the industry have a hard time explaining to clients what it is they do - now they can :)


What is most disturbing to me about the graphic representation of future skills for PR folk is, once again, the relative unimportance of research (10%). Look - argue all you want about digital, relationship, media, and who owns the blog. If PR doesn't do more quantifiable, actionable, and predictable research, like our "friends" in marketing and advertising, we're going to continue to be marginalized at every budget meeting and never find that "seat at the corporate table."

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i just love the picture to explain it. I got so much out of the article. this is such a great read.

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this is such a great good article. where did you get all this information.

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this is so good. Strategy should be higher than 20%. i think this is the key.

Justin Jordan

Sweet article! This was interesting to what they say about the brain for a PR PRO. http://www.opinionoutpost.com had more posts that were like this one, with so many different things. Does paid surveys count as marketing? or public relations? because, I have been hearing allot about them.

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