By Matthew Kaiserman, Junior Account Executive
As the lines continue to blur between public relations and marketing, the role of PR professionals will continue to expand. The same set of skills that used to apply to public relations, is now very different. The demand for content is rising and the size of the newsroom is shrinking, thus shifting the scope of the PR profession. Below are three skills that public relations professionals must master looking towards 2019.
While measurement has always been a thorn in the side of PR, the industry is evolving to provide accurate reporting. Clients now want to gauge how certain campaigns are performing, and PR pros often have to quantify their ROI more often than before. Improvements in technology and new media monitoring platforms allow for more insightful metrics to be pulled from campaigns. As new technology integrates itself into the world of marketing ie. artificial intelligence, it is imperative for communicators to be well versed in data analytics. Providing clients with accurate insights from campaign outcomes is necessary – ranging from social media to media relations efforts.
Communicators will be called on to handle more than just traditional public relations efforts. The PESO Model (paid, earned, shared and owned) will expand and PR pros will be tasked with handling all aspects of marketing. This can range from influencer marketing and social media management to digital marketing and paid web/social campaigns. PR pros will not be boxed strictly into media relations, but rather using every tool at their disposal for increased brand awareness.
Even with the rise of video content, PR professionals will always have to be masters of the written word. Because of the decreased size of newsrooms, PR pros have to pick up a lot of the slack in creating engaging content. Having writing skills is as important as ever as the demand for content is growing. Content marketing and SEO both circle back to effective written communication. On any given day, communicators may be called on to write quick social copy or a lengthy byline article or blog. Effective writing skills are crucial for the public relations industry, and that is not changing anytime soon.
Looking towards the year ahead, public relations professionals are going to have adjust their skillset to fit the growing needs of the industry. This may mean learning new things unfamiliar to themselves and mastering some skills already on their toolbelt. PR professionals should always be adding to their skill sets and staying on top of any trends affecting the industry. Being adaptable is key as communicators look further into the digital age.