A new global survey has revealed that the majority of PR practitioners in the UAE are missing out on effective PR tools and techniques.
Talkwalker joined forces with global market research and data analytics firm YouGov to gather data from 3,700 marketing and communications professionals based in the Middle East, Europe, USA, Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America to release new research about the industry.
Talkwalker’s 2020 Global State of PR report reveals how different regions define 'PR', and highlights the different ways in which PR professionals use social listening tools in their day-to-day work, and which metrics they currently measure.
The global adoption of social listening and analytics in the industry was reported at 48 per cent.
Countries with the highest reported use of social listening tools include France (75 per cent), Italy (72 per cent), United States (71 per cent), South Africa (71 per cent), India (68 per cent) and the UAE (59 per cent).
While nearly half of PR professionals globally confirmed that their companies use social listening tools, only 15 per cent of them utilise them for newsjacking - which Talkwalker executives describe as a "huge missed opportunity, considering newsjacking is widely considered as a PR technique that can drive mass coverage and influence sales in a measurable way".
In the UAE, 74 per cent of corporate PR positioning for senior executives is not driven by social media analytics – compared to the global average of 80 per cent.
Only eight per cent of C-suite level executives in the UAE use social listening tools for reputation management, despite reputation and crisis management being critical to this role in the PR industry.
Just 15 per cent of UAE PR professionals use social listening tools for newsjacking – in line with the global average.
The global users of social listening tools in the marcomms industry have traditionally been social media managers and data analysts. However, the report reveals that PR account managers, executives, coordinators, directors and vice presidents together accounted for 33 per cent of global users. In the UAE, the number is slightly less, at 28 per cent.
Finally, as influencer marketing has evolved into a key opportunity for marketers today - worth up to $10bn in 2020 - Talkwalker asked PR professionals how they engage with influencers, who they engage with, and which metrics they measure to prove ROI.
For B2C influencer campaigns, 70 per cent of global PR professionals used Facebook to engage with influencers, compared to 68 per cent using Instagram. In the UAE, Instagram is ever so slightly ahead, with 72 per cent of PR professionals engaging with influencers for B2C campaigns on Instagram and 71 per cent on Facebook.
The gap is higher when it comes to B2B influencer campaigns, with 65 per cent of global PR professionals collaborating with influencers on Facebook and 53 per cent on Instagram. In the UAE, 76 per cent of PR professionals collaborate with influencers for B2B campaigns on Facebook and 62 per cent on Instagram.
LinkedIn and Twitter, surprisingly, are lagging behind at 58 per cent and 45 per cent respectively, despite commonly being regarded as more traditional B2B platforms.
Regarding the relatively new social media platform, TikTok, eight per cent of PR pros use it for B2C influencer campaigns and four per cent for B2B influencer campaigns.
In the UAE, the adoption of TikTok for B2C campaigns is even higher, at 12 per cent, and equal to the global standard for B2B campaigns at four per cent.
"The PR landscape has certainly undergone a lot of changes to keep up with today’s shift to digital. It is a very exciting time for the industry with plenty of untapped potential for PR professionals to go fully social and unlock the huge benefits that social PR strategies could offer," said Robert Glaesener, global CEO at Talkwalker.
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