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NEWS: PR professionals failing to harness the power of social media

PR agencies are failing to harness the power of social media to develop conversations with the media, according to a study by Cision UK in association with Canterbury Christ Church University.

Thirty-eight per cent of PR professionals never respond to media queries via social media and 28 per cent only respond on a monthly basis. In addition, 21 per cent of the 748 PR professionals surveyed said they never reply to queries from customers on social.

Instead the majority (74 per cent) of PR professionals use social media to promote their own content, while only around a quarter (26 per cent) use social networks to pitch stories. According to the survey this suggests that this may not be considered an effective tool for reaching media professionals. 

PRs prefer to contact journalists through email (used by 80 per cent) and telephone (49 per cent). Journalists on the other hand prefer to be contacted by email (84 per cent), but less by telephone (23 per cent), while 34 per cent of journalists would love to see PRs use social media more often. 

When asked how often they use social media, more than two thirds of PRs responded they use social media on a daily basis. A whopping 89 per cent of PRs use Twitter, 84 per cent use Facebook and 80 per cent are LinkedIn members.

The research also revealed that social media has improved productivity of 64 per cent PR professionals and 61 per cent of respondents agreed they couldn’t work without social media.