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PR Has Developed Since First ‘Public Relations Handbook’ in 1967, however Some Values Are Timeless – PRsay

Fifty-five years in the past, the primary “Public Relations Handbook” that I edited was revealed. Matt Holt Books lately revealed the e book’s fifth version. For sure, so much has modified in public relations since 1967.

Again then, after we first revealed the “Public Relations Handbook,” reaching out to the media was comparatively simple for PR professionals. There have been newspapers, magazines, wire providers, commerce publications, TV and radio. Three main broadcast networks dominated TV.

In our preliminary version of the “Public Relations Handbook,” we mentioned how one firm had extremely transmitted data by way of satellite tv for pc from the US to Japan, with a two-way, closed-circuit tv between Tokyo and Chicago. (Does anybody keep in mind when satellite tv for pc information conferences have been cutting-edge?)

CNN wouldn’t launch till 1980, however even then, cable remained in its infancy. Widespread use of the web didn’t happen till the Nineteen Nineties.

Each day newspaper circulation in the US has fallen from its peak of 61.8 million in 1974 to 24.3 million in 2020, in line with Pew Analysis Heart. About 2,200 native print newspapers have closed since 2005, chopping the variety of newspaper journalists by greater than half between 2008 and 2020.

After we revealed the primary “Public Relations Handbook” in 1967, the notion of social media, influencers, YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat, podcasts and search-engine advertising and marketing didn’t exist. Right now, just below half (48 p.c) of U.S. adults say they get information from social media “typically” or “generally,” in line with Pew.

The splintering and decline of conventional media means there may be much less curation of details. Social media has additionally raised vital questions on the right way to cease the unfold of misinformation with out curbing free speech.

New know-how, new commitments

Many corporations have lengthy thought-about it vital to behave within the public curiosity, however now commitments to environmental, social and governance values — and to serving not simply shareholders however stakeholders — have grow to be prime priorities.

Concerning public coverage, the notion that CEOs would take or should take stands on points comparable to LGBTQ rights, local weather change and racial and gender range would have been unthinkable 55 years in the past. Rereading our authentic chapter on disaster communications underscores the modifications which have taken place in company America and public relations since then.

In 1987, we talked about media responses and media monitoring. We urged communications professionals to “preserve an open stream of communications as soon as you already know the story.” PR practitioners used to have a number of hours to determine the details and the define of the story earlier than responding, however that’s now not the case.

Enabled by the web, social media and cellphone cameras, information in the present day spreads around the globe earlier than we will know the details. Communication is 24/7. Media monitoring should now embrace web information websites, social media and its influencers. Public relations professionals have to have the ability to reply shortly throughout quite a lot of platforms.

A lot has modified in public relations within the final half-century-plus, however some issues stay the identical. Above all, credibility and belief are key.

Sometime, after we look again on the fifth version of “The Public Relations Handbook,” these values will nonetheless ring true.

Robert L. Dilenschneider based The Dilenschneider Group in 1991. The agency offers strategic recommendation and counsel to Fortune 500 corporations and main households and people around the globe.

[Illustration credit: hurtas!]



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