They say that there are two sides to every story, but most stories have way more than just two perspectives from which to look a them from. Some issues have as many sides as a Scattergories dice but the sides that fickle little object lands on affects the outcome of the game and it can be controlled with a good PR firm. Information travels fast these days and controlling how it is delivered and received is an art. There is a lot of responsibility involved with media sources who present information to the general public because it influences how people feel about things that affect many people’s lives. The problem is that a certain amount of journalistic integrity has been lost with the internet information-medium because accountability is almost impossible to assign.
The internet has changed everything and almost any industry who has been impacted by it has been forced to make a lot of changes to the way they operate as a result. The public relations business has had to change the way that they do business so they can properly represent their clients because of the internet as much or more than any other industry. This is because the public relations business deals with the spread of communication between relevant points: Their client and their audience, which in some cases is the entire public. It is not easy for a company or individual to control how the general public feels about them because people can only know and form opinions about other people and companies based on the information they are provided with.
Establishing some kind of control over available information involves a PR firm having and maintaining good relationships with influential news and social media sources. Today, having an intimate understanding of how people use the internet to find and share information is more important than any other part of the job, although traditional information-sharing mediums like the newspaper, television and radio are still very relevant for many audiences. Utilizing and gaining exposure to audiences using subject matter of particular public interest and news delivery mechanisms is the aim of a public relations company. They should know how to effectively use these things in order to create awareness and favorable opinions without having to provide direct payment to anyone for it.
Properly informing the public with relevant information that is advantageous to a particular client can involve a highly nuanced strategy based on their audience and where they congregate and interact with one another. This occurs on the internet in many different places but the places where people spend more of their time than anywhere else is on social media sites. There are reputable news sources all over the internet as well but if they are not places where the majority of internet users go to interact and get their news, they are not as relevant to creating positive public opinion for a person, business or specific cause. There are links all over popular social media websites to news sources where newsworthy information is provided, so social media websites can be seen and used as a hub for news. The internet has more closely aligned the advertising and public relations fields, so many of them regard themselves as social media marketing companies now.
Advertising and marketing and public relations are two different things but they are closely related because both concern themselves with exposure. PR works to find that exposure for free whereas advertising and marketing more often have to pay for space in order to get the products they are pushing into places where people can be influenced to buy them. Celebrities use PR companies to manage their image all of the time because they are in and of themselves, a business because they depend on what people think about them in order to be considered desirable so they can work. Politicians and businesses need public relations as well for their own reasons, and so do government agencies and non-profit organizations who are working to create some public support for social, political or human/animal rights issues, for example.
A public relations firm should have a well-balanced approach as it pertains to the people they employ and the talents and interests that they personally possess. Having an experienced, seasoned PR professional who is familiar with the old-school but has found a way to adjust to the many changes that the internet has brought their industry is valuable. Employing younger people who are an inextricable product of the internet generation is also very valuable because they move to the beat of the modern-day social media drum.