The use of social media is no longer a question of if, but how

To say that social media has changed the jobs of PR practitioners would be the understatement of the decade.

To say that social media has changed the jobs of PR practitioners would be the understatement of the decade. It appears as if every campaign PRWeek covers contains an element, whether it's a YouTube video, Facebook page, or Twitter feed. Yet sometimes it's a good idea to take a step back and recognize there are companies that are still struggling to determine precisely how social media fits into their marketing and PR strategy.

The results of the first annual PRWeek/MS&L Social Media Survey show that more than a third of marketers have not used any social media tools in their marketing plans. The reasons run the gamut from not being convinced of the ROI to the lack of internal resources. This information serves as an important reminder of the educational opportunity that still exists for PR pros to demonstrate social media's value and best practices to both clients and internal decision-makers.

Social media is a theme that carries across our October issue. Kimberly Maul's digital analysis focuses on the sports industry's use of such tactics in connecting with fans. The NFL's recent decision to prohibit media from tweeting certain information during games shows that this is a space where control is still a balancing act.

Calling social media a trend at this point is foolish. The question should no longer be whether social media should be used in marketing plans, but how. PR professionals are the ones best equipped to provide that answer.

Social media is just one of the categories for this year's PRWeek Awards. Remember, the entry deadline is October 9.

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