The Internet has certainly opened new doors, but the basics of good PR haven’t changed – to create relevant, engaging and effectively targeted content, whether it’s online or offline. In business-to-business, it’s important to reach customers directly; there are just more ways of doing it nowadays.
Despite falling paid-circulations, editorial coverage in mainstream trade magazines still carries weight, especially when a magazine occupies a niche in which it excels. Besides, many of the same magazines tend to have digital editions, and the websites with most traffic are often run by mainstream media.
The growth of online PR with optimised content – applied to news sites, blogs, forums and social media – has undoubtedly boosted the capacity to engage with wider audiences, develop search rankings and measure visitor traffic. What’s more, it enables journalists to research their own stories by checking blogs, media rooms and RSS feeds, which include articles from magazines.
It seems to me that the issue isn’t about traditional or digital channels; both are important components of any media relations programme, so use whatever mix works best to reach your customers.
The challenge today is how to combat information and work overload in an age of media proliferation, which can lead to people switching off. What do your customers really read, watch and listen to? Do they want to receive absolutely everything online? Use your customer database to reveal this valuable information by running an incentivised survey, and target your PR programmes accordingly.