It’s not the content – It’s how you present it!

Public relations is defined as the actions of a corporation, store, government, individual, etc., in promoting goodwill between itself and the public, the community, employees, customers, etc.

I think this is a good definition of public relations because it’s what I think public relations is all about.  Public relations to me is knowing how to communicate with the public. Whether it be for a corporation, a celebrity, or yourself you need to be able to communicate the beliefs and “news” of whatever you are representing.  I believe publicity is a type of public relations because with publicity whether it’s good or bad it’s out there, and you need to be able to communicate the good and resolve the bad before it takes a toll on whatever you are representing.

Also another aspect of public relations is social media.  Social media has grown tremendously because of the internet and it is now the quickest way for word to spread about a corporation or celebrity.

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What is Public Relations? Does Anybody Know?

When I signed up to take Public Relations this semester, I really did not know what Public Relations was. I could not have defined what it was if I tried. Now that we are finishing the semester and the class is almost over, I have learned a lot about the profession and what PR professionals do, however, I still don’t think that I could come up with a definition of what PR is. Well, it makes me happy that I am not the only person that struggles with the question “What is public relations,” but I think that I have come up with a few main points to being succesful in the world of PR.

Without understanding who you are trying to communicate a message to, your message will never have its intended impact. You must understand how the public thinks, feels, and reacts to specific messages. If you can do think, coming up with PR schemes and such will be much easier and more successful.

There is not one specific correct way to become good at pubic relations. In order to be good at public relations, being able to connect with the public through many different outlet like pictures, television, movies, social media, and many more, is a key attribute.

  • Make the best out of the situation

PR professional are thrown into many different situation and told simply to make it work or to fix it. That is a pretty generic job description. However, this is expected in the business. In order to be successful, have an open mind, listen to ideas, and have a positive attitude and making the best out of any situation will be possible.

Despite learning these things in class, I don’t think I can or anyone else can give a good enough definition to public relations to give the job jusitice. However, if I had to give it my best shot I would say that public relations is the interaction, interpretation, and  communication between a source and the public.

PR; A Common Misconception

                Public relations in my opinion is all about supporting and protecting your businesses and organizations. I definitely feel that PR has a bad rep according to a lot of the public, but I don’t necessarily believe this is true. After reading Fitzpatrick’s, Ethics in PR, she stated that “well-funded front group practices tend to monopolize the marketplace and diminish other voices, limiting access to the marketplace ideas and interfering with citizens’ and/or policymakers’ access to info needed to help them reach informed decisions about issues or policies of public interest and concern” (14). However, in my opinion, I’ve realized that front groups are not always trying to lie about their products or companies. For example, Generation Green is normally trying to show the public that it’s necessary to recycle, and eat foods that do not have pesticides. They’re not trying to bash non-organic foods or non-recyclers; they’re just trying to give positive suggestions and explanations to keep their public safe. There’s always just that basic stereotype that when someone hears PR, most think, “Oh they’re liars.” It’s also not fair to judge PR because a lot of the time, the professional is trying to dig their client out of the hole that they buried themselves into. It’s not always easy. Being a PR professional can be very chaotic. People need to realize that PR is not all about lying. They’re trying to help maintain a positive outlook on what they’re representing.

The Future of PR

5) Offer three ways you think technology will be part of public relations work in the future. Is it going mobile? Virtual? In this response, account for the troubled state of newspapers and offer a few prediction about the PR jobs of the future

Today’s public relations is already much different than it was even a year ago. These days, almost everyone has a smart phone. With these devices, users can access the internet almost anywhere, whenever they want. It is of much more greater importance for organizations or individuals to maintain an online reputation, as this is how most individuals obtain information.

In the future, one way I believe technology will be a part of public relations is through mobile devices such as smart phones. Public Relations professionals will have to dedicate a lot more of their efforts to the online community rather than print or other traditional methods of communication.

Another method of communication that public relations representatives have to pay attention to his social networking. I can see social media platforms extending outside of the realm of Facebook or Twitter, and becoming a major part of the online community and public relations. Many online users look to social networking sites for more than just networking. They use them to find information about their favorite celebrities, get updates on news events, or find information. One article writes that, “PR professionals use social media every single day to get the word out about clients, to communicate with customers and to respond to questions or problems”. I can only see this trend continuing in the future.

Because public relations is trending to focus on an online community, it is likely that print newspapers and magazine will become obsolete. Already, magazine and newspapers have begun to provide their content in an online medium. Many household are actually stopping their newspaper subscriptions and get their information from the television or online news sources.

Back to the Future

5. Three ways PR will evolve with new technology

Public relations has many definitions, but the main concept is that a company, corporation, or celebrity entity uses PR techniques to promote its message to the community.  Today we see the distribution of these messages through news/press releases, online videos, and live in person press conferences.  Although this is much more advanced than how PR first started with just interpersonal communication between corporation and public, there is still n0 limit on what we will see done in the future. 

– One possible upgrade in PR tactics could come in the aspect of smartphone advancement.  Life is mobile now, and soon anything that is not will be obsolete.  I could forsee the simple recorder apps, camera apps, and video apps becoming much more intricate in news source use.  With this technology, anyone can create or echo the news if they were there when it happened, and as such word spreads faster than ever, especially of celebrity and organization mishaps.  Take the case of the Penn State scandal, that information was released about late one weeknight.  The press release was immediately blown up and quickly moved from an announcement on the State College campus, to a national trending topic on Twitter.  The PR representatives for PSU were ill-prepared for the backlash and the University faced a devastating blow to their image.  It will become more important than ever for public relations officials to get a handle on quick response times to counteract the speed of information.

– In the accord with the declining interest in physical newspapers, these organizations have gone online as well.  The possible next step for the distribution centers could be streaming applications on smartphones.  We already see the pay-to-read models used by newspaper companies to try to enhance profits, who is to say they won’t soon move to only allowing access on smartphones and tablets through their personal, costly apps.  From the perspective of public relations, this move would better control the articles passed around by social media sites, restricting clicks to those who decide to pay.

– Lastly, and with an ere on the space-age technology we are all waiting for, what if PR became an automated business style.  With the iPhone’s new Siri app, if you ask a question you get an answer.  What if PR firms used this technology to upload their press releases and official statements on events?  What if you could use an app on your phone and ask “What is the latest on the Penn State scandal?” and get a spoken answer rather than links to several stories (something Siri might provide).  I would not be suprised to see the Siri technology become prevelant in our rapidly growing society, so PR officials better jump fast on this opportunity to provide their messages in the most efficient and demanded format.