Monday, 13 November 2006

What's the point in doing online PR?!

Hi all, this is my first blog, so be gentle with any criticisms!

Last Friday I attended the New PR conference in London, with David Phillips. I thought that it would be useful for you all if I summarised what happened.... Also I think that I can finally answer the question on everyone's lips...

" Why are we studying online PR and what does it have to do with what we learned on placement..."

First of all you will be happy to hear that its not just BAPR which meets the idea of Second Life with raised eyebrows and distrust.... pretty much all the PR professionals in the room at the conference were very sceptical to say the least... so I’m thinking its going to be quite a few years before we need to start seriously worrying about it. However, anyone who wants to be ahead of the game may be interested in paying a bit more attention to it, as the expert speakers predicted that it would grow in popularity over the next few years and warned people to not get left behind! I also heard that they are even creating a BIG BROTHER in second life- which makes me cringe, as the one on TV is bad enough- but any one who does like the show may want to check it out.

For anyone who is still negative towards social media I'm afraid to pass on the message that Stuart Bruce, a leading PR practitioner in new media, said that it's tough... theres no stopping social media, as it already exists as a medium, and you can either integrate it into your PR campaign, or get left behind. You wouldn't ignore media coverage in national papers, so why ignore the internet?? I think that this is a good point, which answers the question of relevance to the practice of PR- coverage comes in many forms and as social media is on the increase it is one to watch, use and manipulate to our advantage.

Neville Hobson spoke about Podcasts and RSS feeds, and I'm pleased to say that if you have attended all the online PR lectures so far then you probably will know a lot more than the average PR practitioner- as pretty much everything he was saying has been covered on our course- and the PR practitioners I was sitting near looked pretty blank- so online PR lectures are putting us ahead of the rest of the industry! The main point to remember is that Podcasts and Blogs are not there to replace traditional media, but are just another way to enhance a campaign and reach another type of person- so they are useful!

Right I've rambled on long enough and I'm sure that your attention is beginning to deteriorate so I will finish by recommending two websites:

If you're interested in seeing what people are blogging about you can look at, which is like google but it only searches blogs. There's also a site called where you can compare coverage of two brands to see what people are writing about- which I thought could be quite useful, for example are people talking more about Coke or Pepsi?? I'm sure your placement companies would like to compare themselves to the competitors- don't you think??

I hope that this is helpful- see you all soon

1 comment:

David Phillips FIPR said...

Sam... Great.
We can continue the SL debate which will be fun.
I agree with you that practitioners are struggling but know that this is not going away. Hopefully we will continue to be up there with leaders in the industry (not too far ahead, such is the way to frighten an already worried group of people).

Stuart Bruce is right to say there are no experts. We are all learning as we will see tomorrow.