Influencer engagement is the tipping point marketing and PR need to reach their audiences in the digital space.
Every single day, my inbox is filled with articles about Inbound Marketing, Social Marketing, Digital Marketing, Content Marketing, Marketing Campaigns and other related topics. Some of the concepts have nearly been forgotten while others have gone viral — this always depends on the popularity and echo of the ‘gurus’ who happen to have written them. A telltale sign would be if the articles aren’t being shared amongst communities because people cannot relate to them (or they are just not interested), they will most-likely disappear.
What’s surprising is that many of the authors of the articles that do stick around do not have any industry experience. Just one or two posts that happen to be trending topics and all of the sudden they have thousands of new followers on Twitter: instant influence. However, that is not my objective with this post — but if I gain a handful of new followers, I won’t complain! But really, I wrote this post to give my 2 cents on the recent article, “It’s Official: Forrester Says Campaign Marketing Is Dead.”
For years, PR and Marketing practitioners were working together, hand-in-hand. They were developing communication and reputation strategies trying to reach journalists and public affairs officials for PR objetives and celebrities for marketing goals. But somehow, over the years the departments separated and work more independently from one another. But recently (and with the ever- growing process digitalization), channels to reach journalists, bloggers and celebrities are now multiple in nature and much more direct. These influencers need to be engaged from both a PR and marketing perspective.
In this sense, influencer engagement is the tipping point marketing and PR need to reach their audiences in the digital space. This means that marketers and PR professionals will have to join forces once again to create new strategies and produce quality content that’s channel-specific to attract influencers and ultimately spread their message. Still have doubts? We are going to share some insight:
PR Insights from a Marketing Mindset
A main responsibility for people working in PR is to work on producing content about the brand, its products, the management team, etc. With that in mind, let’s discuss 3 ideas where marketing helps PR:
- Adapting messages to channels and formats
Multimedia content or infographics visually representing data are 2 ways of going beyond the usual press release. These formats are beginning to garner attention. And not only from journalists, but from other influencers such as bloggers and experts in a specific industry who find the concise and easy-to-read information a blessing out of all the content they receive on a daily basis.
- Advanced performance measurement
It’s true that PR has learned how to “measure” results from marketing. Just a few years ago “news clipping” was the most common way to report the effectiveness of a communication campaign. Today dozens of pieces of information can be analyzed to enhance PR effectiveness. I recommend that you take a look at our white paper called “How to use Google Analytics for your PR campaigns” for more information about measurement.
Now, a number of mentions in the press no longer has to be the only indicator nor the only way to measure a communication team’s performance. Nowadays, reports are able to develop much more detailed data, incorporating a broad range of comparisons, analyzing the evolution of hits on multiple channels and offering us true insights regarding our brand reputation. What is the goal here? To observe what works well and what doesn’t, so we can act accordingly and adapt our strategy based on the results.
- The segmentation of our audience
In the past, traditional PR was often focused on reaching as many journalists or lobbyists as possible to spread their messages. This was not only because they didn’t know how to find key people, but also because they didn’t know how to entice them read their messages. Marketing processes that are now obsolete have shown that “less is more,” and that the efficiency of a tailored message to a well-chosen audience has a better conversion rate than mass communication. We say, “that depends on what your objectives are.”
Marketing Insights from a PR Mindset
The main objective for marketing departments was to reach final consumers mainly via advertisement spots. In this context, let’s discuss 2 ideas where PR intersects with marketing:
- The relevance of the content
As the channels and messages have evolved, advertising and aggressive marketing processes developed years ago have no effect in this new environment of selective consumption. This is where communication has helped marketing to find alternatives to “dress” these commercial messages into interesting and valuable content.
- The relevance of close relationships
Because interactions with final customers are now possible, marketing is less focused on impacts and now concentrated on building stable and loyal relationships with customers (as PR does with key journalists). PR can help not only in creating and managing relationships with others, but also in having an editorial line and calendar to communicate with targeted people to ensure a campaign is getting results.
PR & Marketing: the Tipping Point for Influencer Engagement
With all the technology that’s available out there, we are able to:
- Identify and rank influencers (journalists, bloggers, experts, and prosumers) that are related to certain topics.
- Engage identified influencers through a campaign plan that turns them into brand advocates through the use of attractive and valuable content.
- Measure the efficiency and the outcome of the engagement process and convert campaign opportunities into leads that will be handled by our sales team.
Is influencer engagement really the tipping point marketing and PR will rely on to transmit their messages? The truth is that as brands evolve around digital dynamics, marketing and PR will have no other choice than to work together to achieve their objectives. Interested in finding out more? Follow our channels and stay updated!