Social Media, PR, and Journalism..do they need each other?

social-media-news-facebook-twitterIn a time where our everyday lives are so heavily influenced by social media, it can work in favor of PR professionals and make their job easier. It can also work against them, making their job more difficult. The rise of social media and smartphone technology has made it easier for the public to share events that happen that would be considered PR nightmares and give journalists so much to write about. When used effectively, all of these things can work together and allow for positive outcomes. In the article “How to Turn your Social Media Crisis into PR Success” (http://www.earnedmediarising.com/?p=5425), the point is made that one of the things that need to be done in terms of a successful PR strategy is to not avoid the conversation. Not only to be a part of the conversation about the controversy but try to reflect positively. Too often, in a crisis, things are either avoided or addressed too late and at that point, the public’s opinion has already been formed making it that much harder to recover.

With the rise of social media in our world, I think that it has (or may) begin to further the relationship between PR practitioners and journalists. I see the need for these two feels to work hand in hand, especially since it seems that both fields are starting to be so heavily influenced by social media. Journalists may rely on social media for their stories (reliable or unreliable, that is the question.), while PR professionals may find it easier to connect with journalists through social media and collaborate with them to build media coverage (which may reach a larger audience now due to social media). According to the article “Public Relations and Journalism: Can They Play Well Together?” (https://www.axiapr.com/blog/public-relations-journalism-can-they-play-well-together), these two fields can not only work well and have mutual respect for one another, but they can also ultimately benefit from the relationship, especially with social media playing such a large part. According to the article, PR professionals may offer something interesting that journalists can use, which is promoted on social media, reaching further and benefiting both. When they work alongside each other, then we are more likely to get the full story and the truth.

While collaboration can be good, there are negatives when comes to the two using social media. According to the blog “What’s Happening with Social Media, Journalism and PR?” (https://www.iliyanastareva.com/blog/whats-happening-social-media-journalism-pr), there is one huge issue that the author points out that we’ve all seen, especially lately. Journalists may be becoming too reliant on social media for their stories and may not necessarily be checking the accuracy of these stories but publishing the content anyway. Accuracy has taken a backseat to the need to get the story put as soon as possible. With PR professionals and journalists, relying on each other to get an accurate story out while showcasing things in a positive image, would this make this relationship more difficult? To me, it seems to. It makes both jobs harder. The journalist must retract the story that could have caused damage while the PR professional handling the damage control is in for a bumpy road.

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