During the years that I've been practicing PR, I've seen the industry evolve. The journey has been like going from The Flintstones in the Stone Age town of Bedrock to The Jetsons in a futuristic era.
One example is event planning. In the old days, inviting attendees and media to an event would require simple technology, like a phone line and invitation, which would get delivered via snail mail. This I compare to the character in The Flintstones taking photographs as a bird carves the actual picture on a stone tablet.
More recently, we worked with one of our clients who hosted a series of invitation-only summer concerts featuring performances by highly-recognized Latino DJs and chart-topping musical artists and performers. The events were held in exclusive locations from coast to coast. But what set them apart is the format in which we attracted party-goers. The ticket to these parrandas were found exclusively on the pages of the World Wide Web.
Gaining access to the coveted events required attendees to first become a fan of the client's Facebook page, which would allow you a chance at scoring tickets. Additionally, the different acts performing at the individual events would provide real-time updates and information to their followers through various social media vehicles, including Twitter. The response was unparalleled to what I had seen in years past.
As times change, so do our tactics and strategies in the world of PR. I doubt we would have gotten the same reaction with a regular invitation. For this event, it made sense to engage fans on Facebook. According to statistics, 50% of active Facebook users log into the site each day. That translates to roughly 175 million users every 24 hours, which is real-time information with the capability of reaching a multitude of people.
I sit back and watch in fascination how social media continues to revolutionize the industry. But I also tell younger generations that at the end of the day it's also about having a great product and knowing how to engage consumers. That is something that will never go out of fashion.
Roxana Lissa is CEO of RL PR.