We have all heard the expression about the shoe cobbler’s son having no shoes. Do accountants file their own taxes on time? Do financial planners have solid complete, water-tested financial plans? Do public relations executives and firms have websites that communicate differentiators instead of clichés, engage their readership (prospective clients for public relations firms and personal branding visibility for public relations professionals) and, most importantly, what is the main objective of a website in an overall digital strategy? My sense is that the website is dying a slow death as a centralized hub for branding. Contributing to this includes the availability of multiple social media platforms and the expense/effort, i.e. perpetual care, required to keep it fresh and up-to-date.
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Not unlike the past 200 or so weeks, social media was a big news story this week, both within the PR profession and beyond. The question on many pundits’ minds was how can the same sites that build brands, and strengthen business-to-consumer relationships, also dismantle the level of consumers’ online privacy?
Social networks like Twitter and Facebook still offer companies valuable brand-marketing strategies. But with interest in, and use of, Google+ rising and becoming more of a force, consumers are questioning: “What is the value of oversharing?”
PRSA’s “Friday Five” post — an analysis of the week’s biggest PR and business news and commentary — looks at the consequences that consumers could face as a result of new privacy changes to Google+ and explores the strategic requirements for businesses using Twitter.
Google’s no-opt-out privacy changes and the end of the anonymous Internet (ComPost / The Washington Post)
Reporter Alexandra Petri says that Google’s latest privacy changes have left many consumers asking, “Must you, Google?” This is in response to the search giant’s announcement this week of plans to integrate data from all its services with Google+ users’ profile information and status updates. Try searching yourself on Google, and you might be surprised by how much Google seems to know about you. The Washington Post examines how our online activity may soon cause real-world consequences.
Facebook, Twitter Call Out Google On Social Search Results (Digits / The Wall Street Journal)
The Wall Street Journal reports on cries of hypocrisy Facebook, Twitter and Myspace over Google’s decision to promote Google+ pages in search rankings. Known for providing users with the most relevant and objective search results and information, the argument, as The Journal reports, is that Google is forcing Google+ plus pages to the top of search results when Facebook profiles and Twitter pages may contain content that is more relevant. Google rushes into the social media arena late in the game but may pose unexpected competition.
If you’ve been following the measurement world within the PR industry over the last year or so, you’ve seen a fair amount of news coming out of first Barcelona in 2010, and then Lisbon this year. It may have caused you to wonder: How come the measurement folks meet in cool places on the Iberian Peninsula, and we get stuck with conferences in Detroit, Orlando and Philadelphia? Well, we welcome more people to the measurement tribe at any time, and in fact, the 2012 version of the European Measurement Summit will be in Paris.
However, maybe measurement or Paris is not your thing, but you want to at least understand the state of play. Here is what you need to know:
First, in Barcelona last year, around 225 measurement people from 30-plus countries agreed to the Barcelona Principles at a conference organized by the International Association for the Measurement and Evaluation of Communication (AMEC). These seven Principles are the foundation of good measurement. PRSA played a big role in developing those Principles by bringing to the party much of the language and ideas from “The Business Case for Public Relations™.” In broad strokes, the Barcelona Principles say a few simple things:
- Set goals before you measure;
- Measure media with quantity and quality metrics, not AVEs;
- Understand how people and business results change as a result of PR;
- Social media is another channel and the same measurement ideas apply; and
- Make sure all measurement is transparent.
Once upon a time there was a shiny new object called the telephone, and the first person to manage the telephone in an organization was probably the CEO. Then, sales and customer service and marketing and everyone else started clamoring for this shiny new object, and management was very scared. They worried about who would control communications management, or if the function would become too fragmented. Eventually, they looked around and realized that companies with telephones were growing faster and making more money than their unconnected counterparts.
And there is no longer any discussion about why we need to measure the effectiveness of a telephone.
A few decades later, there was another shiny new object called the computer. Originally, the computer sciences managed all things computer. Then sales and marketing and customer service and all the different divisions who needed business intelligence started clamoring for computers. And Management was very scared.
They worried about who would control the proliferation of all these new objects and who would decide who would or would not have access to these newfangled computer things. A few years later, CEOs and CFOs realized that departments with computers were more efficient and more profitable than ones without them, and soon everyone in the company was online, using computers to facilitate work flow, manufacturing, customer service, sales, HR and marketing.
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PRSAY is a forum for PRSA members and other public relations professionals to engage in a dialogue with PRSA leaders, exchange viewpoints, and share perspectives on issues of concern to the Society and the public relations industry as a whole. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policies or positions of PRSA.