Putting the Public Back in Public Relations


If you’re a public relations firm or social media marketing newcomer, I am pleased to introduce you to prolific social media specialist Brian Solis.

I’m writing from the Public Relations Society of America Digital Impact Conference, which I am also keynoting and chairing, just officially opened in NYC this morning with a keynote from Brian Solis, co-author of the new book Putting the Public Back in Public Relations with Deirdre Breckenridge.

Brian spoke about how social media is enabling wired public relations practitioners to demonstrate ROI through direct communications with every day people, and here’s what a got from his talk:

  • Media relations are no longer enough.  Are you a public relations consultant or marketing communications expert?
  • Who are you writing for, journalists or the public?  The press release format isn't cut if you’re writing for the public.
  • Using interns to tween (twinterns) is a bad idea because they have the least investment in your organization.
  • Community managers are competing against public relations.
  • Social media allows you to be as influential as the people you want to reach.
  • Social media allows PR people to change behavior and measure those activities.
  • Tastemaker relations, which involve pitching influential consumers instead of journalists, is among the most successful tactics he’s currently employing, but tastemakers don’t respond to press releases.
  • Social media clients like Friendfeed and PeopleBrwser, which aggregate social media activities from multiple social networks, are the future of online PR.
  • We used to think about the best time to release a press, but now we think about the best time to Tweet.
  • The social web requires a human voice, which is very different from the voice of the press release, which is the committee's voice.

In addition to live blogging some of the sessions at the Public Relations Society of America Digital Impact Conference, I’m also tweeting with the hashtag #PRSAdi (formerly #digimpact) and will be uploading pictures to Facebook.

This is my second year chairing the conference.  This year I have the honor of keynoting and co-chairing with blogger Elizabeth Albrycht.

This session, and others from the PRSA Digital Impact Conference will be available as podcasts in the coming weeks, and you can stream them online.