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Reverse That PR $H#T

Reverse That PR $H#T

[By Rebekah Iliff]

For decades, PR has been *relegated to a position that oft leaves us “last to know first to blame.”

*dismissed, made to feel inferior, downgraded, lower in rank/status

But now, ladies and gents, the tides are a’shifting (not sure what accent I’m going for here, but it’s really working for me right now)…ahhh yes, PR is about to have it’s day in the sun.

Before I go on waxing poetic about how data and analytics have enabled this to a degree – that story has been told, has it not? – the REAL shift is that the really really smart people on the Comms side of things have started talking to the really really smart people on the Content side of things and figured this out:

  • PR is good at communicating messages and stories
  • All Content is, actually, are stories and messages put into a format which is then distributed on some channel (did I mention “convergence”?)
  • Thus, PR is probably a likely candidate to drive the Content machine

And as Lee Odden astutely stated during last week’s PRSA International Conference panel session hosted by Marketwired:

“Content is the future of PR.”

YEAH IT IS. And guess what happens when PR owns Content?

Welp, you guessed it: We are the first to know. We are in the driver’s seat. We get to set agendas. We are no longer asked to put together some bullsh*t press release in order to satisfy a quota set by some arbitrary upper completely removed from the sitch.

Go us.

But first…yes, always with a catch…it’s going to require a rather sizable shift in thinking. In fact, it’s basically an entire reversal of our former systematic approach to PR.


How to think about PR in 3 steps:

STEP 1: Stop thinking about pitching a publication, start thinking about pitching a channel.

STEP 2: Stop thinking about a pitch or press release, start thinking about the best format to communicate with your audience, customer, employees, etc.

STEP 3: Stop thinking about sheer volume of outputs, start thinking about the how you’re going to measure the performance of the formats you put out through channels.

If you’re reading this, you likely already know that Content is empowering PR like never before: it is the mechanism by which PR lives or dies. It is how we communicate with key stakeholders, which include customers, media, employees, and of course…the general public.

So now that we have re-framed the relationship PR has with Content, the question is…what are YOU going to do about it?

Tell us @AirPR. Also feel free to take us to task. We like that.

This post was originally published on the AirPR Blog. Rebekah Iliff is the Chief Strategy Officer for AirPR, a technology platform to increase PR performance. Previously, she was the CEO of talkTECH Communications, one of the fastest growing tech PR firms in the country. She is currently a columnist for Mashable, Inc., and Entrepreneur, and her contributing writing can be seen in everything from Forbes to the Huffington Post. Additionally, Iliff frequently moderates and participates on panels at leading technology and business conferences, and she has presented at countless conferences on the future of PR and big data. She holds a B.A. in Philosophy from Loyola University Chicago, and an M.A. in Organizational Management and Applied Community Psychology from Antioch University at Los Angeles (AULA). @rebekahiliff 

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