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Keeping up to date on social media technologies and frequently measuring the effectiveness of digital and traditional tactics to communicate your message.

Dana Mastro

Yet, Encarta was discontinued by Microsoft only eight years after Wikipedia was created. Despite all of the advantages that Encarta had over Wikipedia, Wikipedia persists as one of the most influential websites in the world because it leverages the resources of its users to create its content. The key for PR professionals is to interject your point-of-view into this process. Botan and Vincent Hazleton say this about co-created messaging:. Use social tools to proactively be accessible to your audience, and use advanced tools to monitor for user-created social messaging.

The quote above eloquently summarizes the shift in consumer power that social media has enabled.


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You may never know how many people will be influenced by my Facebook complaint, and that is the impetus for businesses to set a high-standard for their social care programs. Impossible to monitor traditional and social media? See how Cision can help.

How the Internet and social media are changing culture

Take a demo now! Consider the advanced parameters that you can use when targeting an audience on Facebook:. All of this as well as being able to target to a zip code level, along with traditional parameters such as gender. Twitter and Google offer the same sort of targeting options depending upon the information that they have. Before the mass-adoption of social media, such precise messaging was never possible to the degree that it is now. And it will get more precise in the future: a new wave of targeting options based upon your proximity to a particular business or location are on the horizon.

Leverage segmentation tools on social media platforms as a tactic within your PR plan. Just as social allows for sophisticated targeting of people, it also gives unprecedented insight into journalists. PR expert Mia Pearson says that the value of social media for media relations can be to understand the journalists specific beats, when their deadlines are, their personal and professional interests and to have informal conversations with them.

Use social media to build relationships with key journalists and bloggers to help understand what they write about, when they need resources, and how they prefer to work with you. In , there were 3 million blogs in existence. In , there were million.

In a longitudinal analysis of social and traditional media from to , a group of researchers found a continuing decline year-over-year of the influence of traditional media sources:. Additionally, these Pew studies report more and more people are receiving news via social media such as Facebook and this research also reports the number of Americans using tablets and mobile devices to receive news continues to rise.

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Networks, such as Triberr , show the amplification potential for small-publishers to gain distribution almost exclusively through social channels. Do not overlook bloggers in your PR plans, especially consider targeting those with larger social distribution. What I wanted to do in this piece is explore how social media impacts PR practice today and give some practical considerations for how practitioners can use these to their advantage.

How the Internet and social media are changing culture | Frank Furedi

That said, if I wrote this six months ago or six months from today I wonder how different it might be? For more marketing advice from Jim, click here. In short, the combination of open source publishing and crowdsourcing allows a community of users to collectively improve on and create more innovative ideas, products, and projects.

Unlike most media products that are tightly copyrighted and closely monitored by the companies that create them, open source publishing and crowdsourcing increase the democratizing potential of new media. The advent of these new, collaborative, participative, and democratizing media has been both resisted and embraced by old media outlets. User-generated content, both amateur and professional, can also compete directly with traditional mass media content that costs much more to produce.

Information and Communication Technology for Development

Social media is responsible for the whole phenomenon of viral videos, through which a video of a kitten doing a flip or a parody of a commercial can reach many more audience members than a network video blooper show or an actual commercial. Media outlets are again in a paradox. They want to encourage audience participation, but they also want to be able to control and predict the media consumption habits and reactions of audiences. So, for example, when software is open source, the code is available to anyone who may want to edit it as long as they continue the open philosophy of product development by then making their version, often called a derivative, available to anyone who may want to edit it.

Within this philosophy, the synergy that is created when a group of people with different levels of knowledge, experience, and expertise work collaboratively leads to innovative ideas and products that are then shared with the commons rather than kept as proprietary. Another example of open source innovation that we may soon be interacting with frequently in our professional and personal lives is 3D printing.

Although the rapid advances in 3D printing have so far been limited to a small group of inventors, specialty scientists, doctors, and early adopters, 3D printers for professional and personal use are now commercially available. This type of do-it-yourself production could have implications for all types of businesses, who could, for example, save money on design, production, and shipping by printing their own custom or specialty products.

The days of analogue media are coming to an end and, indeed, are over in many places. As a speech teacher, one of the technology struggles I have faced over the years is recording student speeches. For the past several years, while teaching at different schools, I was continually flustered by the difficulty of finding an easy way to digitally record and have students access their speeches. When I first started teaching, we rolled a camcorder into the classroom on speech days and each student brought his or her own VCR tape to class and would pop it in, hit record, do the speech, and then pop it out.

It was the easiest method of recording I have ever used. But the last time I asked my students to bring a VCR tape was about five years ago, and when I asked, the students looked at me like I had five heads. Some of the same problems with representation and access for which the mass media were criticized are still present in new media, despite its democratizing potential.

As we discussed earlier, new media increase participation and interactivity, giving audience members and users more control over content and influence over media decisions. Media critics point out, though, that participants are not equally distributed. Research shows that new media users, especially heavy users who are more actively engaged, tend to be male, middle class, and white. Scholars and reporters have noted the democratizing effect of new media, meaning that new media help distribute power to the people through their personal and social characteristics.

Many media scholars have commented on these changes as a positive and more active and participative alternative to passive media consumption.

6 Ways Social Media Has Changed Public Relations

Instead of the powerful media outlets exclusively having control over what is communicated to audiences and serving as the sole gatekeeper, media-audience interactions are now more like a dialogue. The personal access to media and growing control over media discourses by users allows people to more freely express opinions, offer criticisms, and question others—communicative acts that are all important for a functioning democracy.

A recent national survey found that young people, aged fifteen to twenty-five, are using new media to engage with peers on political issues. The survey found that young people are defying traditional notions of youthful political apathy by using new media platforms to do things like start online political groups, share political videos using social media, or circulate news stories about political issues. These activities were not included in previous research done on the political habits of young people because those surveys typically focused on more traditional forms of political engagement like voting, joining a political party, or offline campaigning.

Political engagement using new media is viewed as more participatory, since people can interact with their peers without having to go through official channels or institutions. But the research also found that this type of participatory political engagement also led to traditional engagement, as those people were twice as likely to vote in the actual election.

Although the digital divide is a continuing ethical issue, new media have had a more positive effect on places that are often left out of such technologies. In fact, about 25 percent of registered voters told their Facebook friends and Twitter followers who they would vote for. Aside from new methods of advertising, social media also helped capture the much-anticipated Election Day, including some of the barriers or problems people experienced.

People used YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook to document and make public their voting experience. People also used social media to document long lines at polling places and to share the incoming election results. Issues of ownership and control are present in new media as they are in traditional mass media. Although people may think they are multitasking and accessing different media outlets, they may not be. To help keep users within their domain, some large new media platforms like Facebook and Yahoo! New media provide ways of countering some of the control and participation issues that audiences have typically faced as the lines blur between producers and consumers of media.


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  8. The phrase alternative media is often associated with new media. Alternative media Media that include a range of voices with diverse cultural identities and experiences, which counter the mainstream media that are controlled by and include the voices and perspectives of more privileged people. From a truly democratic perspective, which is supposed to invite and encourage dissent, a plurality of voices, and civil debate, alternative and tactical media are welcome additions to the traditional media landscape that tries to diminish, rather than encourage, competing voices.

    Blogs were the earliest manifestation of Web 2. Blogs are an accessible and popular outlet for citizen journalism Reporting done by individuals or small groups outside of the media establishment as a corrective to mainstream journalism, which may inaccurately report or underreport a story.

    Citizen journalists increasingly play a part in shaping local and national discussions of news and have received positive and negative evaluations from mainstream media and audiences. One corrective function of alternative media and citizen journalists is the gatewatching function.