Social media has become an integral part to society in today’s world. In 2017, it is almost unheard of for someone to not have an account on at least one site or application – whether it be Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat or LinkedIn. Due to the notion of getting news as quickly as possible, social media has exploded into millions of users daily.
The rise of social media has impacted how professionals run their businesses, and this is no different for those in the public relations field. Public relations professionals have made it a point to capitalize on opportunities that social media can present to them.
One of the first things social media does for public relation professionals, is that it gets straight to the audience, instead of having to pass through media or editors. With this, speed is key, as information is able to spread quickly to people who either need or want to see it.
Another key for professionals using social media is that it is interactive. Interactions allow those they are trying to reach to offer opinions and insights on to how they feel about certain topics, issues or businesses that are being promoted or advertised. This can be a good or a bad thing, as direct feedback can be beneficial to the professional as to what they are trying to do; likewise it can be bad because people can voice their complaints or rants freely about different things, so that can be difficult to deal with as a professional. Concerns of patrons need to be handled carefully, but efficiently, and this is publicized for all to see, so the entire world is watching and making judgements on how situations are handled.
One final key that public relations professionals are able to capitalize on is that social media allows the brand’s personality to shine through. Businesses are able to build relationships with their followers or consumers by relating with them in different fashions. Keeping up with trends is an easy way to connect with people on social media sites, and humor is something that a lot of people look for. Building a brand with personality will bode well in the long term for business as people enjoy organizations that are able to have interactions with its consumers, as well as handle complications with class and proficiency.
Public relations professionals are currently embracing the booming business of social media, and it’s something that helps promote themselves and their brands by embracing the public. Speed is one of the most important things when it comes to promotion and getting information out to the public, and social media allows for that. Interactivity is crucial as well because it helps create relationships while getting positive and negative feedback. Building a brand through a personality allows businesses to also continue building connections.
Social media continues to trend upwards, and professionals will always look to be able to get an edge any way they possibly can, especially from a public relations standpoint.
Tyler Godwin is a junior sports broadcasting/sports information major at Waynesburg University. He currently works for the Waynesburg University Yellow Jacket as an Editorial Assistant and also is a student worker for the Sports Information Office. Tyler is looking to pursue a career in the sports industry by combining his passions of writing, sports and statistics for his future career post-graduation.