Gimme my glossy mags

One of my recent favourite topics is to explore how PR professionals can create maximum impact and achieving great results, for campaigns using a blend of social media tools and good PR strategies and tactics. While I am exploring the new media space and social networks, trying out new tools and platforms for communications, I actually disagree that PR folks should drop everything and flock over and go ga-ga about everything 2.0.

It is true that public relations work has changed. With new technology and tools, we are able to make public relations more public again. It is no longer just reaching out to few exclusive target media. The Web 2.0 tools allow companies direct access to consumers and users. In David Meerman Scott’s book, The New Rules Of Marketing & PR, he wrote that traditional, mainstream and trade media are still important to a PR campaign.

I do agree with that point. While I am spending alot of my time online, as a consumer, I still love my glossy magazines. I am one of those who would flip Elle magazine and look at all the advertisements and read all the editorial features, simply because I am the target audience of that mag. I want to know the latest Fall/Winter bag and shoes and read about the Spring/ Summer 08 hairstyle trends. So, beauty products and fashion companies whose target audience fall under similar demo/psychographics as me will be able to reach us quite effectively through the mag. Sure, I can read about the new Prada bag online and even read reviews from bloggers but I still want to flip the mag and look at the beautifully shot images, printed on nice, glossy prints.

So, while everyone is rushing into the Web/ PR/ Business 2.0 spaces, I am trying to take a step back and consider again. One of my clients, dealing with jewellery commented last week that while he understands that there is a need to pay attention to the online space or other activities, he believes that good, positive articles about the company and product in targeted female magazines is more important and he thinks that this helps to achieve his marketing objectives and reaching his target audiences more effectively because of the nature of the product.

Again, I have mixed views on this but shall save the thoughts for later..

Many may argue that there are alot more to all these shifts in media and PR, which I am sure I am going to agree mostly. Afterall, I am the geeky girl who’s spending 80% of my waking hours online – blogging, updating Facebook, adding stuff to etc etc. But what I am trying to say here is, the traditional media still is, important in PR (2.0). The thing to remember is, tools and technologies, movements and trends change all the time, the basic PR skill sets of understanding your brand and product, the skill to engage target audience (off or online), the skill to strategise and integrate a campaign to get your key messages across to your consumers, understanding and know your key media (on and offline) are all still critical and required in the profession, before we move on to playing with the tools and exploring the shifts.


16 thoughts on “Gimme my glossy mags

  1. Your exeprience with your client who still wants to focus on magazines makes a good point. Perhaps part of having a great stratgey is knowing how to balance the off and online media for a great overall result.

  2. Prada, you have a cool blog. You are very right, there is that fine balance that we should all aim to achieve. Ultimately, it’s about getting the good results and not “how many web2 tools i can use”.

  3. I think you hit the nail on the head with this:

    “The thing to remember is, tools and technologies, movements and trends change all the time…”

    It’s crucial to understand basic strategies and then understand the new communication tools/techniques, before you can implement them.

  4. Excellent blog. Thank you for reading my book and writing about it here.

    I really like your attitutes on the various approaches to PR that are possible. In my many speaking gigs and at meetings with PR pros, people tend to fall into two groups. 1) The old line PR people who are scared of anything online and wouldn’t know a blog if it bit them in the butt. And 2) the social media crazy people who often forget that magazines, newspapers, TV and radio reach millions and millions of people every day.

    You, refreshingly, see both sides in a clear way. Spread the word! Your outlook is rare indeed.

    David Meerman Scott

  5. Hi David, thanks for dropping by and for the encouraging words. I am a big fan of your book and have been sharing your thoughts and insights with my colleagues and friends.

    cheers ~

  6. Good one there, which is totally in line with my own thoughts. Let me introduce 2 new dimensions – relationships and content.

    All good publicists know that you need to cultivate and understand your media channels. This is not the same as bribing the media. What it means is that you take time to speak to them, meet them for lunches, and find out what works and what doesn’t. At the same time, this gives them an opportunity to understand you better.

    The next point, content, entails making sure that you have enough elements for a newsworthy story that grabs attention. Spend time honing and shaping the key messages, pitches, advisories and releases before issuing them out with wild abandon. Are the facts authenticated? Is the writing razor sharp? More importantly, will the press be interested? If not, one needs to have the gumption to go back to the drawing board and design or create something that will generate buzz.

    For too long, people have obsessed over media channels and platforms. This happens in BOTH PR and ADVERTISING. However, they neglect the most important part of any campaign, which is the value proposition to either the media (give me something that my readers/listeners/viewers will thank me for) or the customers themselves.

  7. Great insights, Walter.

    You are so right to say “All good publicists know that you need to cultivate and understand your media channels.”

    I find that alot of agency people wants to be in the new media space but do not understand and do not even participate and be involved in the space. They are using traditional mentality, forcing itself into the new space and it’s annoying the hell out of me.

    Agency people are thinking that “oh, let’s just call all the bloggers out and have drinks and hopefully, they cover our clients’ products.” I have mixed perspective on that. Perhaps, my next post will focus on that. I mean, you and I are in the publicity biz and we are bloggers too.. so, it’ll be great to keep this topic going.

    Cheers ~

  8. Erwin! Nice to be in touch again! I am linking your blog to my blogroll. Like I mentioned earlier, I am “following” you and JOey’s blog posts.

    Thanks for the link!! Will check it out!

  9. Pingback: What I am reading and listening to «

  10. I very much agree with you Priscilla. First rate strategic thinking is necessity and am sure good creative people understand and make use of the web platforms. The main objective of PR/advertising business is to sell (this is for conventional products). Tools are meaningless if we can’t make it sing and dance according to our tune and ensure ROI.

    Does anyone here believe of allocating even up to 15% of business targeted annual revenue to PR/advertising?

  11. hey rey, you are right, tools are to assist us but it’s the human brain and the skills to use the tools that matter

    15% to advertising, perhaps. PR, definitely no! well, at least very small percentage of companies would invest and pump in money to PR. Alot of people still do not understand what PR can or cannot do

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