Do you ever wonder what's the next big trend? Well, faculty member and PRactice advisor, Dan Farkas has a few trends that he encourages all strategic communication to get on top of.
At the PRSSA meeting last Wednesday we all were able to take a look at what's coming up in the PR world.
Starting out, Dan Farkas related his own experience within his consulting firm where he noticed a division developing among companies. There seemed to be a communications director, an events planner, a digital coordinator and many other job divisions taking away from the true success that can be done by merging them together. It is with a long-term mindset that communication directors can work with creating content that is applicable to every channel the company wishes to communicate on. Taking this core concept and hammering it home, Farkas transitioned to the four new trend he believes are in the future for all communication directors.
The first trend, although frightening, is that communication directors and public relations advisors must become hoarders of their ideas as the people on the show, Hoarders, are with their things. This concept is about becoming a more efficient communicator. Coining the phrase C.O.P. E (creating once, publishing everywhere), Farkas emphasized how one text for a certain channel of communication can be altered and manipulated so that it fits all of the other channels your company wants to reach. Farkas believed that you communicate best for your company when, "You can take on a concept and hoard your ideas and use them in as many ways as possible". It is through many channels in which we communicate best.
Piggy-backing off of that, Farkas mentioned the second trend of multimedia sharing. Relating the idea to the person at the gym reading US Weekly while on the treadmill and listening to a podcast all at the same time, Farkas explained that people aren't doing just one this anymore. People are doing more than reading; they want to read, listen, and watch. Just writing the post or the email isn't cutting it anymore. To be truly effective a company or organization needs to be communicating through texts, through podcasts, and through video to truly reach their audience.
The third trend is something I'm sure we're all familiar with, technology. The advent of technology will work for the benefit of communication directors if we can channel it and have it work for us. Instead of with fear, we must look at the revolution of technology with hope, " How can technology work for us, not the other way around?". I don't know about you but I welcome the newest iPhone with open arms and shamefully hide my purple flip-phone in the very back of my closet.
Finally, the last trend that Farkas addresses is the need for effective measuring of the content we share. A company needs more than aggregation; they need more than likes and shares because likes and shares don't make money. Farkas emphasizes the need to measure how the content we share leads to dollars and cents, the need to measure behavior. If done correctly, the communication first causes awareness then consideration, on to purchase, and ending with customer or advocate loyalty.
With all of these trends in mind, it is the job of the communications director to find how best communicate the message so the company or organization can go change the world.