Social Media & Traditional Media-Reach & Impact
Social Media has broken into nearly every industry. It has impacted traditional media as well. The way we absorb and communicate information and news has changed significantly after the influence of social media on traditional media. Traditional media is no longer the one-way path of communication, now consumers can participate in the conversation and influence the news. The social media is becoming a way to spread the word. Social media has allowed news to be accessed in real-time, for instance just seconds after the big event happens. It is a powerful parallel to the traditional media such as newspaper and television.
The biggest effect of social media on traditional media and content is that now everyone feels like they have a voice. Whether through Facebook, Periscope, Snapchat, social media has provided a public medium for anyone who has an opinion about anything. The people can now consume news and information on multiple platforms and immediately as it happens. Social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook allow the public to contribute to and control the news, by reaching a tuned-in audience in real-time. It is often faster than traditional media. Whereas, in traditional news outlet it takes time to publish the story and reach out to the people.
Nowadays online outlets will not only publish a story but also post it to their Twitter feed so that their social followers will click on it there and read the story. Since listeners can curate their own news feeds by following specific Twitter handles and Facebook/Instagram accounts, the access to immediate news and headlines makes more difficult for news outlets to reach a large audience. In the past, the ability of campaigners to influence or predict stories to spread by the news media was limited. Social media has changed the perception of it. Social media now provides a powerful discussion platform, by connecting everyone with an interest in topic.
Social media has changed public relations (PR). Social media has also proved to be a useful tool for marketers to search, track and analyze conversation and trends. PR professionals can use social media monitoring tools up front, utilizing social media data to influence PR strategies. Public relations practitioners now have to change their strategies in order to make sure they engage their audiences in the best way possible.
Because of social media PR practitioners are able to connect with their audiences by inviting conversation, interaction and feedback. Social media now allows consumers to connect with brands at any time and it’s up to PR practitioners to ease up for consumers. PR expert Matthew Royce points out about the public relations which has become two-way conversation about the brand and consumers:-
“PR professionals can no longer blast out information about their brand or client and expect to succeed. Consumers and journalists have come to expect that they won’t be‘spammed’ and will be answered quickly and in a personal manner.”
PR professionals must monitor and respond to social complaints and questions from consumers in fast amount of time. PR practitioners should also focus on key journalists and bloggers in their PR plans. They should use social media to build relationships with them (journalist) and (bloggers) help to understand what they write about, when they need resources, and how they prefer to work.
The world has become digital and mobile. The Digital Age has changed the media landscape irrevocably. In this digital era people choose the media they want to consume and how. There is more power to the consumer and consumers have a choice of options. Everything is unbundled now. Because of this choice, brands have to be more careful about how they should engage with the consumers. Brands can communicate with their audience.
The specialization of media is the reason why brands are able to target specific individuals and groups. Distribution of information is limitless-which is bad news for social media, because films, TV, music are produced and distributed in a controlled way, whereas on the internet it is an environment where anyone can distribute anything with maximum efficiency. Consumers can switch media and brands to one that according to their values. Every brand wants a community and access to data that is available from each community. The growth of communities online has changed the media landscape in digital age.
There are many ways that social media has improved traditional media, and the two go hand-in-hand now. With this integration of social and traditional media, the influence on public opinion can be insightful. Today, people are not only changing the way they communicate and share information with everyone, they are now using social media to listen, interact and connect as opposed to traditional media. As the world has become digital the social media definitely impacted traditional media and changed the way people consume information as well as public relations (PR) and many factors.