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In the relationship among public relations, mass media, and the audience, it is often the mass media who are deemed the power brokers in their ability to potentially influence an audience
The agenda-setting theoretical framework operates from the perspective of the mass media having the power to transfer the salience of an issue to the public
But then perhaps, too much power is granted to the mass media without the consideration of the processes by which mass media content is selected and framed
This raises the question: who sets the public agenda? Public relations practitioners have the ability to assist the production of mass media content through various proactive public relations strategies that are designed to promote and present the organization they represent in the most positive manner
A case study of the National Basketball Association's (NBA) public relations strategies was used to reveal that the mass media are not the sole power broker in selecting and framing messages
The NBA itself has implemented several public relations strategies designed to shape mass media content and subsequently public opinion and behavior
The public relations strategies of the NBA are extensive in attempting to continuously promote the league, its teams, and players and to frame the coverage the league receives in the most favorable fashion
The NBA was chosen because of the nature of the organization, with several NBA games being played simultaneously throughout the nation, the mass media become necessary for a fan to follow the league.
The NBA’s Public Relations strategy played a prominent role in selecting and framing mass media content that could influence public opinion and behavior
Public relations and publicity are not synonymous, but many PR campaigns include provisions for publicity
Public Relations is a 20 th -century phenomenon
Major 20 th century trends:
Growth of big institutions
Heightened public awareness and media sophistication
Societal change, conflict, and confrontation
Growth of global media, public opinion, and democracy
Dominance of the Internet
PR is now expanding communication tools to account for the fact that no single mass media, or combination of them, will be a good vehicle for reaching key publics Early 20th Century—PR began to reinvent itself along journalistic lines, mainly because former newspaper reporters such as Ivy Lee started to do PR work and counseling—extension of the journalistic function focusing on the “dissemination of information or one-way communication models in which the quality of information was important but audience feedback had yet to be fully considered.” The PR evolution 1800 Press Agentry – 1800s were the “Golden Age” of the press agent 1920 Advance in social Science & research, the focus of PR shifted to the psychological and sociological effects of persuasive Comm. 1960 Issues management was added to the job description of PR with War, Civil Rights, Environment -al concern growth 1990 Reputation or perception management were the Buzz (PR agencies Multiplying in large numbers Globally) 2000 the concept grows of PR as the practice of “ Relationship Management ” . B uilding & fostering Relationship With various publics 1980 The concept of PR as a management function is in full bloom. “ Strategic” became a PR buzzword 1970 Era of reforms in the stock market and investor relations Pseudo-event Counseling Publicity
The advent of “Transparency”— companies committed to being more open—the public is demanding more accountability from all of society’s institutions
The Internet/Websites allow companies to share more “insider”- type information they may not have shared in the past
Rise of Social Media — a new category of “mass” communications that PR must tap into with RSS feeds, podcasts, blogs, vlogs, YouTube, MySpace, Facebook, webcasts, etc. New opp. to communicate!
Increased Emphasis on Evaluation — PR pros will continue to improve measurement techniques for showing management how their activities actually contribute to the bottom line.
Managing the 24/7 News Cycle — the need for PR people to constantly update information, answer journalists’ inquiries at all hours of the days, and be aware that any and all information is readily available to a worldwide audience
New Direction in Mass Media — Traditional media aren’t what they used to be.
The Growth and Demand of Public Relation in India
The economic bloom that India experienced last decade saw the birth of numerous business which were introduced for the first time in the Indian Sub-continent
Many companies which were highly successful in the west opened up their markets in India, but needed to spread their name to the common folks
But they all needed one thing, consumers. How were they going to spread awareness of their businesses ? How would they reach out to the mass and class alike? It was here that PUBLIC RELATIONS played an important role
India also has a legacy of varied public relations approach evident in the many phases of building an all India empire in the passage of history
From the precision of Chanakya’s social messaging to consolidate the vast realms of emperor Ashoka to the subtle public campaigns of the formidable foreign rulers, the Mughals and Akbar’s visionary attempts to reconcile the majority
Post independence public relations in India essentially became an appendage to the humungous government run PSUs
The professional and strong face of Public Relations started emerging post economic liberalization of the nineties
It was not just about ‘spin’ but started to become a part of an integrated marketing campaign geared towards persuasion and influence
The last decade saw the global corporate world trying to find a place in the Indian market
Burson-Marsteller, Porter Novelli, Fleishman Hillard, Ketchum, Apco, MS&L and Weber Shandwick, set up shop in India
Defining social interaction in civilized societies begins with public relations; a natural, recurrent theme running through timeless human engagements in the context of social groups
The growth of Cable and Satellite television “redefined” the horizons of PR professionals
The emergence of the internet on your TV, PC and mobile phone is “re-inventing” the public relations landscape.
The internet has created an ‘inflection point’ for the industry.
Convergence & emergence of new media in PR in India
Rise of next generation communicators
Public relations is also seeing the emergence of the next generation of corporate communicators and agency leaders
Keen to be seen as playing a critical role in the fast changing Indian socio- economic firmament to raise awareness, provide credibility, reach far flung influencers and engage stakeholders in an open and honest manner; and maintain transparency and truth at all times
Leveraging Customer Passion Obama Girl series of videos got over 60million views Obama supporters put up a site during Halloween just a few week before the election. Here visitors were asked to express their support through photos of Obama theme pumpkins Yes We Can by Will A 2008 video featuring 60 celebrities had 11 million views
“ To project India as an unique opportunity for physical invigoration, mental rejuvenation, cultural enrichment and spiritual elevation along with other developments that make India a modern state with state of the art infrastructure”
Although buzz marketing is not new, Internet technology has changed the way it's being used
Buzz campaigns are now being initiated in chat rooms, where marketing representatives assume an identity appropriate to their target audience and pitch their product
Personal Web logs blogs are another popular media for electronic buzz marketing campaigns
Instant messaging (IM) applications are also being looked at as a vehicle for carrying out buzz marketing campaigns with either humans or IM Bots doing the pitching
Buzz marketing is a viral marketing technique that attempts to make each encounter with a consumer appear to be a unique, spontaneous personal exchange of information instead of a calculated marketing pitch choreographed by a professional advertiser As technology continues to facilitate the delivery of a electronic buzz marketing message easier, and software applications make message deliveries easier to quantify, some advertising experts predict that electronic buzz marketing techniques will become a standard component in all cross-media advertising campaigns.
Red Steel received tremendous buzz and excitement from its initial industry coverage and Ubisoft aimed to rekindle and leverage that enthusiasm by developing an online program that would serve as a creative outlet for the game's enthusiasts
The Dojo of Pain program served to promote Ubisoft's Red Steel, a launch title for the new Nintendo Wii video game platform, to a range of consumers including casual gamers, Nintendo "fanboys," and more traditional First-Person Shooter (FPS) gamers. The program strategy involved three core elements
An offline component was the New York City launch party for the Nintendo Wii platform at the Toys "R" Us in Times Square
Affinitive gave the Dojo of Pain program a presence at the event, with games, interviews, and prizes, which provided a high level of excitement for consumers
Exclusive video footage created by Affinitive increased brand awareness and word of mouth for Red Steel and was picked up and shown by the popular website 1up.com
The engaging consumer experience of the program was driven primarily by the 30 "lessons" (activities) that were created
These activities were similar to mini-contests in that consumers were prompted to create and submit user-generated content over a two-week period with the best entry earning a prize and all other entries earning points for completion (redeemable for prizes)
The Dojo of Pain program leveraged elements that were employed for Red Steel's other marketing channels (program URL included print ads, television, and a mobile marketing campaign), leading to an integrated marketing effort that magnified brand messages both online and offline. The program finale was the "Tournament of Doom", in which members competed in a single elimination video creation contest. Each round, members would vote on which members would pass to the next round with the ultimate winner taking home a brand new Nintendo Wii console