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New Public Relations Definition Needs More Show Less Tell

Thanks to the Public Relations Initiative and all the people who voted, I now have a definition of what I do so my mom and dad (or kids for that matter) can talk somewhat intelligently about my employment.  As you might have heard, it has been decided that Public Relations has just redefined itself as “a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics.”  Sounds great, less filling.  Now, please remind me how this changes anything?

The truth is, the PR industry has had identity crises for some time.  Having worked at several PR agencies for well over a decade, the one common denominator was that they all fell short of promoting their work – which is not to say, they didn’t do great work.  Although we might not have the same sexy visual appeal as advertising, PR is very much “a see it to believe it” industry.

I was recently reminded of this shortcoming when I began writing a collection of case studies for DiGennaro Communications.  I thought a good starting point for my research would be to look at case studies across all facets of the PR industry as a frame of reference.  Unsurprisingly, this task wasn’t very easy.  Case studies were outdated, lacked detail and in many cases (no pun intended) were difficult to find on agency websites.

This is the root of the problem.  It’s not about definitions and wordplay.  While you can play around with the definition of public relations all you want, we need to SHOW how our stories changed the way people live and do business – one client at a time.  Focus on the experience not the definition.  Besides, PR is beyond definition.

Social media channels are presenting us with more opportunities to strut our stuff more than ever.  There is an abundance of opportunity to SHOW not TELL.  There is a method to our madness that can only be explained through visual case studies, a deeper focus on numbers/metrics client vignettes and testimonials, and of course, word of mouth.

Marketing Opportunities for a Changing Population

In “A Growing Population, and Target, for Marketers,” advertising reporter Stuart Elliott of The New York Times touches on a critical topic facing today’s marketers – Spanish-speaking consumers. His piece not only highlights the latest L’Oreal USA campaign targeting this important audience, but also shares vital stats regarding the growth of this demographic.

According to the 2010 census released last week, the Hispanic population accounts for more than half of US growth in the last decade. In fact, 1 in 6 residents in the country are now Hispanic. Looking ahead 40 years, analysts speculate that the Hispanic population will represent 29 percent of the entire population. So as a brand or an agency helping companies expand, are you considering ways to reach this demographic? If not, it’s time to start.

Here at DGC we’re working with several multicultural agencies. These companies are dedicating their days (and probably some of their nights) to the pursuit of reaching ever-growing, minority markets – strategically and effectively. Like L’Oreal USA’s latest campaign – Club de Noveleras – they are using consumer insights and research, emerging channels and multiple touch points to provide content and create discussions around brands that are relevant to the lives of these important audiences.

Looking to learn more about reaching multicultural audiences? Check out these tools from the PRSA, Pew Hispanic Center and Engage:Hispanics.

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