Companies using social media – another tool or a state of mind?

Following on from a debate I was reading from Wadds into how do you measure PR and a question Silky asked me about the difference between digital PR and social media, it got me thinking.

tape measure

There seems to be a consensus that PR needs to have better ways of evaluating and measuring (there’s an EU summit on it) itself and social media affords the perfect opportunity to do this. My colleague Morgan made the point that the we are converging with advertising in this respect.

But a wider issue in my mind is how clients view social media. About six months ago, I would have said that many viewed social media (or digital PR) as an extension to their existing PR channels. Now however I’ve started to noticed clients wanting support in building  communties. And I did even tell them to use that phrase!

I think the more social media tools become widespread and mature, we’ll see clients really wanting to engage with a community rather than just ‘punt’ a message to them.

If it does nothing at all, social media will at least force companies to think of people as people and speak to them rather than talk at them.

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