The difference between digital PR and traditional PR has become blurry, and ‘digital’ has transformed the PR profession in so many ways. Catching the attention of industry professionals and the masses worldwide, Digital PR, simply put, is the use of the internet to promote campaigns and to share information.

In some ways, PR hasn’t changed that much. Earned media stories that appear in most visible media outlets are still highly prized. PR has always worked to create content for brands, and it still does.

However, the internet has empowered people by giving them an engaging platform to express their opinions, share their likes and dislikes and post their reviews. The dynamics of delivering a message have changed with marketers having to do away with ‘monologue’ as the digital media has created the space for a ‘multilogue’. Now, there is conversation happening all around us and it is these conversations that are shaping brands.

There are over one million people coming online via their phones every month in Pakistan, as per the numbers put together by digital marketing agencies Hootsuite and We Are Social. The total number of internet users in the South Asian country currently stands at 35.1 million, representing 18 percent of the 194 million population.

So how exactly has PR evolved in the digital era?

For starters, press releases are being replaced by infographics, blogs, vlogs, video, and in-house interviews. PR agencies have adapted to incorporate digital marketing PR activities.

Digital PR is backed by data, and is therefore more quantifiable, and ROI analysis is more detailed (e.g. views, clicks, shares, and likes).

Digital agencies are successful because they understand the online world and its fast development. Companies offering an integrated PR service are well ahead of the game. Most importantly, digital PR is not something you can simply add onto a traditional PR strategy. It is now fundamental to the success of any marketing campaign.

Although the need for unique content, both online and offline has remained consistent, nothing has changed PR more than the rise of the digital influencer.

We’ve experienced a move from celebrities to lesser-known figures who can offer authentic engagement without breaking the bank. Influencer campaigns involve individuals (bloggers, journalists and writers from related industries who are more active online) who can offer a less commercial and more meaningful relationship with fans and followers.

Influencers are the most connected people today, with some having larger followings than many media outlets. Collaborating with an influencer in your industry is a great way to get traction and interest in your brand or product. That being said, it’s important to partner with someone who is relevant and authentic to your audience and brand.

To understand how influencer marketing works in the age of Digital PR and how you can make it work for you, you can be part of digi connect, Pakistan’s first influencer marketing conference, conceptualized and organized by APR CONNECT, the digital arm of Asiatic Public Relations, in partnership with Coca-Cola CEJ-IBA and PAS on December 09, 2017. Find out more at http://digiconnect.apr.com.pk/.

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