On Thursday evening (10th December) I had the pleasure of attending a Q & A session on the topic of the newly released #FuturePRoof book.
I’ve found the book particularly interesting as a student as it highlights many areas that I should be thinking about when (hopefully) going into a career in PR.
But if you want all the details of the book, you’ll have to download it or buy a copy yourself because, with 33 chapters this would become a very long blog post if I discussed them all. I want to write about what was discussed at the event instead.
The first point that I found particularly interesting was how PR is defined. It was explained as a management discipline, rather than a communications discipline, or a media relations role. When I tell people that I study PR, explaining exactly what it is seems to often be quite hard, but this discussion made things a lot clearer. It particularly highlighted what PR has really become.
We also discussed the fact that, in this day in age, PR is always ‘on’. But as Sarah said “why wouldn’t we have teams that are structured to work at different times?” – the problem is very easily solved! This got me thinking about how PR can be a career that needs to be worked 24/7 but that this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it can work around people.
We discussed paid media – something I though PR never touched. However in the changing world of PR, there seems to be 3 instances in which we can use it to our advantage:
- To reach social media influencers/ bloggers/etc.
- To counteract social platforms algorithms (eg: sponsored Facebook posts).
- To amplify organic reach and push it further.
Authenticity was also a key theme discussed. Very eloquently put by Stephen, there is “Still too much sh*t just posted on the Internet – need to engage at a very personal level“, but its true. Social media content needs to have a purpose, engage with the relevant audience and be strategically created.
One final topic that particularly grabbed my interest was competency frameworks. Stephen said “We have no means for understanding what good looks like“. There are no essential requirements to becoming a PR practitioner as there are in becoming a doctor, for example. But does this mean we shouldn’t continue to improve and keep up-to-date with latest tools and techniques? No. There are many ways in which PR’s can better themselves. This is where the importance of CPD was highlighted and because of this it is something I will certainly focus on in the future.
Until next time…