It’s only lazy people that WISH traditional PR were dead

It’s only lazy people that WISH traditional PR were dead

A decade ago I sat in meeting after meeting in Silicon Valley hearing about the new economy and how the ‘old school’ IT companies were dead. It’s so funny to me now, listening to all the social media experts and Web 2.0 pundits say that ‘traditional PR is dead.’ I venture to say that lazy people hope by saying traditional PR is dead, maybe they can make it so. After all it’s a whole lot easier to sit in your jammies and tweet and facebook the night away than it is to call Patty Neger at Good Morning America to find out if she likes the latest book you’ve sent her. Believe me, I would much rather be trading snarky barbs with folks like @CLE84 than getting rejected for yet another story idea by a crusty print reporter.

Social media, bloggers, news sites….these media types are gaining influence by the minute it’s true. But until they start to generate millions of impressions within four minutes there’s no way they will ever replace traditional media. I would argue that new media is just as important and in many cases can lead to mainstream media…but don’t believe anybody that tells you they’re sustaining national media attention without a traditional PR strategy. I’ll never forget the hotshot social media expert at last fall’s Inbound Marketing Summit who  told the audiencethat PR agencies were obsolete and a worthless waste of money.  At the same time he had one of the biggest NY public relations firms on a huge retainer. (Thanks John Cass for the tip!)

Just like like in the heyday of the dot com bubble, people tend to think that great technology can alleviate the need to do the basics…and it never will. No matter how many Twitter followers you have, or Facebook fans, or how many places that Foursquare has made you the mayor of…you’re still going to have to pick up the phone and make a pitch to seal the deal.  Sorry folks, there’s no way around it.

  • George
    Posted at 17:08h, 09 March Reply

    I agree…there’s no substitute for relationship building in person no matter what the industry.

  • Trainee Trader
    Posted at 09:21h, 10 March Reply

    I have a love hate relationship with PR companies. I love them when they send me free stuff. I hate going through the hundreds of garbage emails they send out everyday.

  • Captain
    Posted at 08:57h, 10 March Reply

    I completely agree, especially since a large part of the social media is other biz owners trying to pitch their products.

  • Hosted PBX
    Posted at 11:00h, 10 March Reply

    I agree that traditional media is still a major factor these days wholly based on the fact that it has the ability to attract millions of “eyeballs” in a short span. But, the effectiveness is going down as more and more people are watching TV on the internet, reading newspapers online.

    • waxmarketing
      Posted at 11:05h, 10 March Reply

      I agree about the effectiveness going down. I’m still not sure if it’s really an aging ‘TV watching’ population or whether it’s due to the fact we have so many options.

  • Paul Davidson
    Posted at 18:32h, 10 March Reply

    I agree that although traditional PR is now less popular than it used to be, there is no replacement for real human interaction, i.e offline networking and relationship building. Online PR is definitely easier and quicker, but it is debatable as to whether it is more effective than the personal touch in the offline world.

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    Posted at 02:46h, 11 March Reply

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  • Parking Management
    Posted at 11:41h, 15 March Reply

    Traditional PR still pays off. Remember people still read newspapers.

  • Mike
    Posted at 10:11h, 19 March Reply

    There will always be room for ‘traditional’ PR. Just because something has become digital, it doesn’t mean that the analogue version ceases to exist. TV didn’t kill the radio just as radio didn’t kill live music.

  • free new games
    Posted at 04:02h, 03 April Reply

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  • homes foreclosed las vegas
    Posted at 00:09h, 13 July Reply

    I strongly agree to that people still read newspapers and this is also an effective way to advertise something.

  • Girls Twin Bedding
    Posted at 23:27h, 01 August Reply

    I always find that the people that are the quickest to declare something “dead” or useless anymore are the ones that really do not even understand it, or have tried it and couldn’t make a go of it. I think you will find that the ones that have tried it and couldn’t make it work will always be the first ones out there saying something is “dead”. It really amazes me sometimes.

  • France Dayne
    Posted at 07:56h, 28 August Reply

    Thanks for another great post. I love reading your blog. All the tips you give really work when I put them to use.

  • Small Business Technology Solutions
    Posted at 22:18h, 30 August Reply

    This line sums it all up “People tend to think that great technology can alleviate the need to do the basics…and it never will.” That’s right on for marketing and so many other aspects of business.

    • bonnie
      Posted at 06:02h, 31 August Reply

      I came out of the tech business…I think those of us in that industry are the ones that realize there’s no ‘silver bullet’

  • Turmeric
    Posted at 11:41h, 03 September Reply

    Just think about it this way… If you are looking for a comfortable shoes to buy online, would you go to Facebook and Twitter to search for one or go to Google and search for one? What I mean is, you can get great news and updates from social media sites, but not necessarily at the exact time you want them. Therefore, I vote for PR!

    • bonnie
      Posted at 12:00h, 03 September Reply

      Great point!

  • building a new home
    Posted at 15:07h, 03 November Reply

    I think traditional media still plays a big part in traditional PR. But the players are using new social tools to real their audiences. In the end it’s the experts in traditional media that can really get things done. As for newspapers, I still read them, but only the local content.

    Good post and keep up the good work.

  • James - Salehoo
    Posted at 23:55h, 04 November Reply

    No questions asked about the effectivity of the traditional media. But we cannot deny the fact that new forms of media now is booming and is getting a high rate and impact on people.

  • Online Video Marketing
    Posted at 05:10h, 08 November Reply

    The industry has to acknowledge that traditional media’s structure (TV, newspaper, even magazines) is geared more to serving big national or international firms or people/politicians with high incomes.

    So for small to mid size businesses that have limited budgets, are competing locally, or serving a small niche and not about the ‘mass numbers’— social media marketing is there solution. With social media, they get found, and they do not need to pay or pitch to media.

    So instead of traditional media vs. web 2.0 social media marketers, I think the contest is more about traditional vs. guerilla (low cost, out of the box thinking) media and PR.

    And laziness can in fact be more associated with the system of big budget traditional media. I pay you, you give me PR and TV time even if the news is not exciting or worthy.

    Traditional media (TV, mags, and etc) is used to support social media—but for how long until social media or new media can stand on its own?

    Social media is not all about technology (twitter or facebook) it’s about ‘people’ who now have the tools to do what they do naturally—get involved in one another’s business and share stories!

  • Matt Kent
    Posted at 20:23h, 02 February Reply

    I agree internet marketing, sales and service is another option not a replacement.

  • superdry uk
    Posted at 03:44h, 21 September Reply

    Social media, bloggers, news sites….these media types are gaining influence by the minute it’s true.

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