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PRSA 2008 Embracing Social Media and Deriving ROI

Posted by Media Relations on Monday, October 27th, 2008 - Comments »

Dr. Pepper Logo

Dr.Pepper and Guns N’ Roses, two things that couldn’t be further from each other –  yet Ketchum – has found a way to connect these. On behalf of Dr. Pepper, Ketchum launched a promotion, if Guns N’ Roses finally released their album Chinese Democracy, then Dr. Pepper would give everyone in the United States a free Dr. Pepper.

Guess what? Next month, Guns N’ Roses is releasing their much anticipated album. So what does this have to do with PR and Media Relations? Joanne Puckett, Vice President of Global Research for Ketchum and presenter of “Deriving ROI for Interactive Communications,” believes it relates due to the platform on which the promotion was sent. Ketchum realized that mass media is slowly declining, and that to create buzz around their client there needed to be an embrace of a new platform of communication enter Social Media.

By using social media to connect with an audience that may have never drank Dr. Pepper, Ketchum did something amazing. They connected two brands that probably would have never joined together, but by doing this they connected to a wider audience. This is proof that those who use social media are not just generation Y, but also generation X, baby boomers and everyone else in between. Dr. Peppers awareness has increased and they are now seeing an increase of 15% on their ROI. Ketchum embraced social media to derive a greater ROI for Dr. Pepper.

Barack Obama and Facebook is another example of how thinking outside the box and approaching PR and Media Relations in new light has proven successful. Obama has increased his awareness significantly by being on Facebook, using blog sites, emails and other social media sites to get his message out. By looking at behavior of his target audience and how they perceive the presidential campaign Obama has been able to customize his marketing strategy and tactics. We will not know what his ROI is until November 5th, but we can only speculate that he has done himself a huge advantage by embracing social media to get his message out.

What’s my point? Social Media drives brand awareness. From new drinkers of a soda pop, to a presidential candidate social media is playing a huge part in gaining new audiences. In the PR field if we do not pay attention to this meme of social media we are not doing our jobs as communicators.

“The Point of Connection,” this years theme for PRSA International 2008. If we do not embrace social media we are not touching all the points of connection. Without connecting to new audiences we cannot continue to derive greater ROI’s. Like Obama says, “It’s time for a change!” PRSA International 2008 is helping PR and Media Relations embrace change.

What are other ways PR and Media Relations Professionals can embrace change to derive greater ROI?

  • Read what competitors are doing
  • Listen to what your target market is saying
  • Research the latest trends in your specific category
  • Challenge yourself and your organization to take chances
  • Reinvent your marketing strategy if it seems like it is flattening out

Embrace change and learn how to use social media for your advantage. It is not going anywhere and it will certainly play a critical role in your organizations and clients goals.

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