Comms to be 'emancipated' from traditional media relations in mobile era, says study

Traditional media relations are set to be overtaken by strategies targeting people through mobile devices, marking an "emancipation" for modern comms management, according to a report on the PR sector across Europe.

Mobile devices: Focus of future comms, according to the report (credit: Vernon Chan)
Mobile devices: Focus of future comms, according to the report (credit: Vernon Chan)

The research, released last week by the European Public Relations Education and Research Association and the European Association of Communication Directors, reveals the declining importance placed on conventional forms of media.

The European Communication Monitor 2016 predicts that all forms of media relations will be eclipsed by an emphasis on mobile phone and tablet apps and websites before the end of this decade.

Respondents were asked how important different channels were, with relevance scores calculated out of 100. The importance of mobile communication, currently cited at 63.7, was predicted to reach 91.2 by 2019, according to the report, based on the views of the more than 2,700 comms professionals in 43 countries.

In contrast, the importance placed on press relations with print newspapers and magazines will fall from 64.1 to 30.2, and TV and radio stations will decline from 68 to 55.1 by 2019, says the report.

However, not all forms of traditional communication are in decline in terms of the importance afforded to them – the report gave face-to-face communication an importance score of 77.6, up from less than 50 in 2007.

"The trend towards one-to-one stakeholder communication, either real or virtual, has impaired traditional instruments like press and media relations," it says.

The findings indicate how "modern communication management has been emancipated from its roots in media relations, copywriting and journalism", says the report.

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