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Guest Post: Using New Digital Platforms to Reach Influencers

A screenshot of "Aziz is Bored," comedian Aziz Ansari's Tumblr. (azizisbored.tumblr.com)

Technology doesn’t stand still. As soon as we were all getting comfortable with Twitter and Facebook, along comes Tumblr and a mass of other digital platforms that offer the opportunity to reach important target audiences. Should you be scared? And how do you sell these new channels to clients?

In today’s guest post, Rob Wilson, a digital publicist with 360i, suggests that the PR industry stay on top of these platforms and introduce them to clients quickly so they’re also in the know.

Click through to read more.

Using New Digital Platforms to Reach Influencers by Rob Wilson, digital publicist, 360i

The power of digital media is undeniable, but who’s creating and sharing it is quickly becoming the more the important question. The new AOL/Huffpo network has been the face of the growing trend of site consolidation and content aggregation – taking heat from various mediaites about quality vs. quantity, an age-old debate.

This consolidation and aggregation trend might lead many in our industry to believe that the blogger pool is diminishing and creating fewer options to align their brand messaging with an authentic blogger voice. However, I see the trend pushing these valued and clever influencers to new (and unknown) platforms – creating a unique and timely opportunity for PR.

The value and ROI of digital and social media continues to be a barrier to entry for brands uncertain about how to engage their consumers through the channels and also unwilling to chance investing in it. With the waning recession pushing more brands to invest in activating new advertising and marketing campaigns, I can’t help but wonder how much brands are willing to invest in order to stay ahead of the curve.

If you thought the digital experience 1.0 was difficult to sell to your traditional C-suite, then brace yourself for the future as influence is becoming more valued and robust on new emerging media platforms. If you’re not (or haven’t been) showing your clients the value in engaging with the Tumblr & Quora communities, and even Etsy & Yelp’s elite then you’re already behind.

Your clients’ digital future and reputation is being built by the new dimensions of influence and engagement you bring to the table — not by just managing their existing communities. Early adopter companies have already been positioning community platforms at the center of their overarching PR and marketing plans, with display, print, publicity, search, and Web efforts all revolving around their online communities. Facebook and Twitter are now becoming platforms for brands to socialize their digital innovations and adventures: custom programs, mobile apps, partnerships with unique startups, etc.

The possibilities for reward and return are greater the more you innovate against competitor initiatives. Dare to take a chance. Share the value of aligning messaging and assets with influencers in new platforms. Explore start-ups and emerging platforms. As influencers move to, explore, and create new platforms to express themselves, reaching them is only going to get trickier if you can’t keep up yourself. Stop catching up with the trends and be a trendsetter.

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