After a rainy, humid, intellectually demanding day, I'm being forced to contemplate toothpaste options in the middle of The Voice, which is sidetracking me from a decision of true value – should I vote for Javier Colon or Dia Frampton?
During my morning commute, just as I'm about to nail the high note in Bieber's newest single, I'm suddenly distracted by the billboard calling my attention to a local dealer's servicing promotions. Come to think of it, my car is making the strangest noise…
My cell phone vibrates. 10 new emails, eight of which beg me to shop some limited-time, VIP sale. VIP? That's odd; I don't remember ever signing up for that store's mailing list…
I'm at the supermarket, waiting in the express line behind a man who failed to read the "10 items or less" sign, and a voice comes over the intercom. I'm told to shop aisle 5, where there's an amazing deal on cleaning products. I lose it; I shudder as I morph into a crazy lady, frustratingly muttering to herself.
Companies I love and pledge daily loyalty to lose appeal when I think of the new forms of shouting my money enables. While demanding customers to exhaust their senses, these companies are missing out on opportunities to gauge customer satisfaction and solicit valuable feedback. They're using social media as another means of simply pushing information out. They're ignoring Tweets and comments that carry business importance.
Public relations and advertising are part of a comprehensive marketing mix, but the purpose of each tool should be duly noted before they're put to use. Newer generations beg to be heard; they're creative, they're chatty, and they're opinionated. They've pushed social media to the forefront of communications, forcing companies to decide how to effectively manage this new, interactive medium. Is it an advertising tool? Or does it fall into the public relations domain?
Public relations professionals are key candidates for the management of social media platforms, as they specialize in establishing relationships, starting conversations and creating true engagement. They lend their ears to customers, bringing in valuable ideas and generating constructive feedback. Public relations professionals successfully help to build brands by developing strategic communication plans founded upon honest market insight. Social media is not meant to be another place where customers are bombarded with messages.
If social media is approached in the wrong manner, and if companies log-on shouting, the newer generations will deem the channel useless, and simply change it.
Leann Moczydlowski drives tactical activities on a variety of R&J accounts, which include B2B clients, not-for-profit and association clients and real estate clients. As a critical member of R&J’s account team, Leann plays a key role in client relations, developing strategic and persuasive communication materials, generating media coverage and coordinating many essential aspects of communications campaigns for our clients. She can be reached at email@example.com.
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