Reach a Wider Audience: Best practices for digital media use in public relations

Douglas Quenqua

Over the past 15 years new media tools like email, Facebook, blogs, and Twitter have given public relations professionals more power than ever to reach audiences and manage reputations. But having shiny new tools and knowing how to use them are two different things. Here are five best practices for the use of digital media in PR:

  1. Listen more than you speak. Smart PR pros know that the value of digital media lies not in its power to broadcast their messages but in its ability to capture the thoughts of consumers, particularly when they're unsatisfied. “If we first understand the conversation, we can have a much more constructive engagement,” says Jonathan Kopp, partner and global director of New York–based Ketchum Digital. For high-profile brands, it's critical to constantly have an ear to the ground to detect troublesome chatter (see sidebar).