In 2016, over half the world’s population was connected to the internet and over two billion people owned a smartphone. In addition to this, 2.6 billion people across the world have social media accounts.
The explosion of social media and the digital world has caused a revolution in the marketing and PR industry. Consumers no longer have to tolerate traditional, interruptive types of advertising; marketing can easily be blocked using ad-blockers or by paying for a premium service that will remove advertising for you.
In order to adapt and keep up with the continuous changes in the digital PR world, organisations must be able to create successful digital marketing strategies within the confines of premium digital services; these need to be analysed, evaluated and improved upon for multiple PR strategies.
This growing influence of social media in both business and indeed society, makes it hard to understand why only 36% of PR practitioners would consider their digital marketing effective.
Challenges of the digital PR revolution
61.9% of PR professionals believe that lack of funds and resources will be a key challenge in dealing with the digital PR revolution. Additionally, 58.8% believe that a lack of commitment to try new strategies and technologies will be a major obstacle threatening organisations.
In order to stay on top of the revolution, money and time should be set aside. Technology is changing constantly, every single day. Strategies have to be updated continuously. The choice is clear: either, commit time and investment to a future innovative strategy or simply be left behind.
Limited internal skills and finding the metrics to evaluate strategies are also seen as key challenges that organisations will face. Given these pressures, it is no surprise that 32% of practitioners say they are trying to create a cohesive digital strategy and measurement plan but are finding it challenging.
So, how do we prepare for the future?
When crafting a strategy, organisations must be mindful of the long term, instrumental importance of the document being created. A successful digital PR strategy should be realistic and manageable, aligned with business strategy and on which further strategy can be built and grown upon.
- Target audience
Once a clear business strategy has been designed, it is imperative to understand the audience to be targeted. Clear goals also need to be set to enhance and understand performance. Defining exactly what results are expected and what it is that the business needs its audience to do, are fundamental to successful, digital PR initiatives.
- Choose your channel
Further, it must be decided how your PR efforts will help or entertain the consumer rather than interrupt and frustrate their lives. Key to success is finding the best distribution channels and the most engaging content.
It is vital to put in place the best set of metrics to ensure that your business meets its key goals. Lastly, the data collected through this measurement process should be used to evolve and grow the digital PR strategy.
After preparing a strategy and accessing the relevant technology, the final item that must be in place is staff training. 51% of PR practitioners state that the lack of internal skills and competencies has had a direct effect on a successful outcome.
The study identifies four suggestions to secure the future and develop current and future staff.
- Create an authentic team
- Provide time to learn and train
- Cultivate a results-orientated environment
- Communicate regularly (compare ideas)
Cultivating a team that collaborates well, not only with each other but also with other departments is more likely to result in success. The digital revolution is one that has to be embraced, not only by PR practitioners but everyone in the business. Organisations need to work together as one. Skills need to be developed and opportunities provided along with training and a co-operative work environment.
The digital revolution has taken control away from business and put it straight into the hands of the consumer. This allows them to choose what, when and how they consume content and purchase goods and services. By disrupting the lives of consumers, businesses are alienating themselves further. Instead it is imperative that businesses learn how to become part of consumer’s lives with subtlety and relevance.
If you need any help with business transformation and digital services, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at Zoodikers.
Drop us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call on 01892 520123