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Public relations and the evolving tools of online PR

Over the past decade, press release distribution sites have proliferated on the Internet. This trend reflects the desire of companies and marketing executives to have their announcements and news content seen by as much relevant traffic as possible. As the web audience shifts itself toward mobile and social platforms, PR firms will need to follow suit in order to stay competitive.

Shoppers walk by the construction wall of the new Apple store at Omotesando on June 4, 2014 in Tokyo, Japan.
Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images

Reaching for Eyeballs

Content distribution is a competitive field and service providers will need to continually up the ante with their value proposition. PRWeb and Marketwire are two of the leading providers operating in this space. With their price points on the rise TransWorldNews is looking to reap the benefits with the single press release price point being far more competitive than PRWEB and Marketwire.

However, the Internet is evolving and creating opportunities for smaller content distributors to both get higher SERPs as well as expand their client base. In particular, those offering new technologies will likely possess the ability to dislodge some of the established players due to the increasing importance of handheld devices and social networks.

Audience Participation

Today’s users gravitate towards content that have viral qualities. And such content have been validated by “social proof”. If social proof conveys tremendous value, it stands to reason that PR solutions providers can generate revenue through its ability to deliver social influence as a traffic-type product. The game shifts to not just selling traffic as a product, but selling social votes as proof that an audience is listening to what a client has to announce.

Large companies are beginning to open their wallets for social clout. In 2013, Yahoo! acquired Jybe, a personalized recommendation start-up company that helps “people find the things they love to do based on what’s trending in their social circles”. The deal shows Yahoo!’s intention of being able to offer tailored recommendations to users. The Silicon Valley-based company is also in discussions to buy a controlling stake in video site Dailymotion which boasts over 116 million monthly users.

Growth of Multimedia

Users have been gravitating from text towards multimedia content. Traditional PR solutions may have involved the promotion and distribution of corporate announcements, but the industry may evolve into a platform for video and music producers that want their multimedia content to go viral. YouTube stars want traffic as much as marketing executives.

And that presents opportunities for growth where everyone, not just corporate accounts, can potentially be a client.