How journalists use social media

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PR and journalism go hand in hand and when you speak of the importance of social media for PR and how it`s become such a game changer, you always have to consider its influence on journalism as well.So here are some interesting facts from a piece of research by Middleberg Communications and the Society for New Communications Research, titled "Media in the Wired World"

  • Nearly 70 percent of journalists are using social networking sites, a 28% increase since the 2008 study
  • 48 percent are using Twitter or other microblogging sites and tools, a 25% increase since 2008
  • 66 percent are using blogs
  • 48 percent are using online video
  • 25 percent are using podcasts
  • More than 90 percent of journalists agree that new media and communications tools and technologies are enhancing journalism to some extent.

So is Twitter the new press release? Probably not. Still, it has developed into a notable source of information for journalists and therefore provides countless opportunities for PRs. Some people still think that social media suffers from the "shiny object syndrom", being hyped because it`s new, but I think social media came to last, enhancing the dialogue between audience and writer.
Even journalists` perception of the credibility of social media is increasing.

So it`s crucial for public relations professionals to use and embrace all different kinds of social media - not (only) because it gives them the chance to overcome gatekeepers and communicate directly with their audience, but also to maintain and enhance media relations.