Bentley College Marketing- Honors

This blog is for MK 402-H01 and the greater Bentley College population.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

PR's Big Opportunity

Blog reference from the Diva Marketing Blog à Modern Marketing Blog

PR's Big Opportunity
January 26, 2006

While traditional PR methods are commonly dismissed as “branded journalism,” the evolution of technology has allowed PR to reinvent itself and take on a much more respected role within the consumers’ minds. How has this happened? The majority of control over PR has been taken from marketing departments and put into the hands of the public. “Citizen’s Media” is the new craze, where millions of people around the globe can easily and freely express their opinions on any topic under the sun. These authors are trusted by their readers as unpaid, sincere peers and co-consumers.

The most well-known establishment of Citizen’s Media takes place via blogs. As James Cherkoff, Collaborative Marketing Writer for the Financial Times stated, blogs are “…growing fast. Online blog monitor Technocrati.com tracks more than 4 million blogs and adds 20,000 a day to its register.” Through blogging, consumers are welcome to publish anything they’d like to the entire world, and this has become increasingly popular to generate word-of-mouth marketing for or against brands. These critics are developing online reputations and the respect of many faithful readers. They are making traditional marketing methods seem untrustworthy and somewhat lame in comparison; commercials and conventional PR publications are paid for by invested stakeholders, and therefore are not necessarily honest in their claims.

So how is this technological trend an opportunity for PR? Instead of being viewed as media hawks that make phone calls and attempt to persuade third parties to publish brand-glorifying articles all day, PR may be turning into a much more studious field. PR representatives will need to learn how to reach everyday consumers, bloggers, associations and analysts, and convince them to independently spread the good word. PR executives will learn to really understand consumers and how they feel, and will ultimately be able to convey those thoughts to the firm. It can then modify its brand/products accordingly to better meet customer desires. Thus, PR can be transformed from a dying segment of marketing to an incremental part of the business.

This story is marketing-related because it addresses the changes that are revolutionizing the way marketing is approached. Rather than relying on TV commercials, magazines, and newspaper articles to persuade consumers to buy, marketers need to adapt to the times and pursue other methods that are becoming as or more important than the traditional counterparts. It is important for any marketer to understand these changes that are taking place and to jump on the bandwagon before it’s too late.

The story informs marketing of the changes that are taking place in consumerism and of opportunities that exist, especially within PR. While it may seem daunting that marketers can no longer simply produce ads and pay people to say what they want, with a little understanding and research the whole marketing process can be quickly reinvented. Marketers already spend a very significant portion of their time researching what customers want, right? Now they just need to take that research a step further and figure out how to make customers excited so that immediately after making a purchase they’ll be blogging rave reviews about the products. It could actually save marketers money in the long run; by investing a little more into R&D, they can create products that consumers will be dying to publicly praise, and they’ll be able to save millions on extensive ad campaigns that could become outdated and distrusted anyhow.

These blogs improved my understanding of marketing by, first of all, teaching me of the currently stale condition of PR. I was not previously aware that PR has been losing respect, and I hadn’t thought about the effect blogging could have on the success of PR. I also learned how the present condition of PR could be seen as a position of opportunity, and that with a little more focus on content rather than communication, PR representatives can revamp their image and become a much more highly regarded function of business.

I wish the author of this blog had included more of his own opinions. The blog mainly summarizes and links to the work of other writers on the topic; I would’ve been interested in what this person had to say. Also, I wish he’d gone into more explanation of his ending statement: “And tonight I am off to a Microsoft launch event that I have been invited along to in my role as the Modern Marketing blogger. Interesting times.” I would like to know more about why he was invited and for additional commentary to explain the “interesting”-ness of it all.

2 Comments:

Anonymous James Cherkoff said...

Hi Karina, thanks for your comments. The FT article you point to is a pretty good summary of my own views. It's behind a subscription wall but you can read the same article here...

http://cherkoff.typepad.com/modernmarketing/2005/07/modern_marketin.html

If there any specific questions you have then please email me at james@collaboratemarketing.com.

Saturday, February 18, 2006 11:07:00 AM  
Blogger KarinaKarina3 said...

Thanks James... I appreciate the additional info!

Monday, February 27, 2006 8:18:00 PM  

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