Don’t Be PR Roadkill

How can a public relations professional become PR roadkill? By continuing to ignore social media.

Like an old Looney Tunes cartoon, there are throngs of pros about to stampede by and leave you in their dust. I wanted to offer up one final tough love post on the importance of social media, because for PR consultants no one else is going to tell you this – they just won’t hire you.

We’ve talked before about diving into social media, and how being online and using tools like Twitter are important to your business. As yet another example of the critical role social media is playing in public relations today, a national survey recently found that an overwhelming majority of reporters and editors now depend on social media sources when researching their stories:

  • 89% said they turn to blogs for story research
  • 65% to social media sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn
  • 52% to microblogging services such as Twitter

So, even if you consider yourself a traditional PR person targeting traditional media, social media has invaded your turf. We can’t look at social media as “someone else’s problem” – if you don’t use and engage with social media, you’re putting yourself and your clients at a distinct disadvantage.

This blog (like most other PR resources) will continue to cover social media information and tactics, but there will be less remedial information included to provide you with background. No one knows everything there is to know about social media and where it’s going, but we all need to be out there learning and experimenting.

Are you one of those who’s realizing that 2010 is here and you forgot to learn about social media? No time like the present! Here are a few resources you may find helpful:

What role do you think social media will play in public relations (agree or disagree)?  What resources would you add to the list?

  • Great links Kellye! You always have great blogs!

  • Thanks, Alexis! There's such an amazing array of information on social media out there – you can find the answers to almost any question.

  • Get on with your bad self and tough love, Kellye! I still know PR professionals that haven't taken the SM leap, and the look on their face when it comes up tells me they are terrified and intimidated. I'm not sure why it's more scary than learning anything else new. I've seen these same people take on new industries like a dog to a bone. I wonder how we can alleviate that fear? And why is the intimidation so much stronger (to almost paralysis by some)? Is it because the PR pro is more front and center? I just got myself all curious. Uh oh. 🙂

  • Jen- with your trademark humor (thanks!) you raise some interesting questions. Perhaps the PR pros who haven't yet embraced social media are concerned about appearing “behind” at this point, and that hampers their desire to jump in?

    But I've seen the same thing you describe: it's like there are two camps of PR professionals –those who are adapting, and those who continue to have their heads firmly planted in the sand in hopes they can continue business as usual. I hope they come around before it's too late.