A new survey conducted by Cision and Don Bates of The George Washington University’s Master’s Degree Program in Strategic Public Relations found that “an overwhelming majority of reporters and editors now depend on social media sources when researching their stories.”
Specifically, “89% said they turn to blogs for story research, 65% to social media sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn, and 52% to microblogging services such as Twitter.”
Per the news release: While the results demonstrate the fast growth of social media as a well-used source of information for mainstream journalists, the survey also (noted that) eighty-four percent said Social Media sources were less reliable than traditional media.
The survey also noted that “most journalists turn to public relations professionals for assistance in their primary research … they depend on PR pros for ‘interviews and access to sources and experts’ … ‘answers to questions and targeted information’ … and ‘perspective, information in context, and background information.’”
Let’s take a step back; it’s too easy to come up with a self-serving “See? Told ya so” statement in defense of PR’s role. Let’s take it up a notch.
The VAST MAJORITY of journalists now turn to Social Media for story ideas.
Part of the PR pro’s new job in this era is to create, seed and cultivate content about clients in the socialstreams.
We are casting breadcrumbs. Done well, consumers react. Journalists notice. They follow the trail of breadcrumbs to PR pros, who can then validate and augment their prospective stories.
It’s not just about pitch, pitch, pitching, 1:1, PR to Journalist, anymore. The pickup of story concepts at a grassroots level, by consumers, is now part of that process.
Posted on: February 1, 2010 at 7:20 am By Todd Defren