PR Tips | Social Media Drives the News

PR Tips | Social Media Drives the News

Can you run an effective PR campaign today without a social media component? A quick look at the numbers suggests that the answer is “no.”

Roughly 25% of all Americans now have a Twitter account. Facebook has more than a billion users — and about half of all Americans have accounts. Meanwhile, 82 million American consumers are constantly connected to the social media pulse, accessing their social profiles from their phones.

It used to be that people took blogs less seriously than traditional news reporting. But that’s changing. Sixty-five percent of people now find the information they see posted online trustworthy, according to ING’s new Impact of social media 2012.

Look at any recent news event — from the election to Superstorm Sandy to the Patraeus scandal. It’s obvious that social media is driving the news and shaping public opinion.

During this election cycle there were 358 million election-related tweets. In less than a day, one man’s Twitter photo of Superstorm Sandy was shared nearly 20,000 times. Interestingly, the photo appeared on The Huffington Post, The New Yorker, and The Atlantic, among others. In other words, social media was generating newsroom content, not the other way around.

Rebecca Wardell