Thursday, April 23, 2009

All A-Twitter

I received a strange email this morning from someone who runs a site promoting public relations jobs. It began, "If you are tired of hearing about "twitter"...that makes two of us!"

Then he proceeded to tell people to sign up and get a user name to protect themselves from having someone else beat them to the name.

This is a self-styled PR guru?

If you call yourself a public relations professional and you don't know what Twitter is or how it can help your business, then I predict you will soon be out of business. Of all the professions in the world, public relations demands that practitioners be up-to-date on the latest communications methods. How else can we get the word out to our audience?

If everyone is on Twitter, and we're still sending press releases to the Daily Planet, then no one is going to receive the message. And we're going to have very unhappy clients.

The newspaper business, which I love (I still subscribe to 3 papers), virtually committed suicide by ignoring the rise of the Internet and failing to charge for content. Now, it is too late to turn back the clock - users demands free content and won't pay to read the paper online.

The New York Times just posted a story about how journalism schools are finally wising up and changing their curriculum,

If journalism is changing, then what does that mean for Public Relations? Sending a conventional press release to our media list of newspapers, radio and TV is no longer sufficient. Oh, that might work for a special event, but to really get traction for our message, we need our releases on web sites. And we need people talking about us on Facebook. And seeing videos of our events on YouTube.

And yes, we all need to be on Twitter and not just to preserve our name. We need to be sending out regualr Tweets. Because if we're not using the new media to promote our clients, our clients will go elsewhere.

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