Learn to use the tools, says McClure

Head over to The Bulldog Reporter to read the entire interview with Jennifer McClure, executive director of the Society for New Communications Research. . . . .

Check out her advice for PR practitioners thinking of engaging in Web 2.0:
“It goes back to remembering that PR’s function is to foster positive relationships. To do that in the online world, PR still has a lot of work to do. And we must embrace our new roles. Specifically, this includes:

  • Learning to use new communications tools effectively. Every time I go to a PR event, I’m shocked that people don’t know what Technorati is, how to record a podcast, how to do a blog, or how to record a video. We need to know how to set up and maintain these things. Otherwise, we’ll lose them to other disciplines. There is a struggle today about where New Media should sit—whether it belongs to advertising, PR, marketing or outsourced tech agencies. Even if it gets outsourced, PR people still must understand this stuff internally.
  • Expanding the number of communicators in our organizations.
  • Empowering colleagues across all disciplines to have a voice by teaching them how to use these communications tools.
  • Giving up stringent control of the message and sole control of our relationships with media.
  • Allowing for relationships to develop organically and dynamically and robustly with all our audiences and across all levels of the organization.
  • Fundamentally changing the image of PR and re-educating our organizations, clients and our own industry about what the true role of PR is and always has been—that of relationship-building. . . “
  • “What we need to watch for strategically this year,” she says, “is the blending of traditional media with citizen journalism and social media using all of these tools.”


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