The Role of PR in a Digital Age

I'm in Kiev this evening preparing my presentation for tomorrow's European PR Congress 2011. I'm the first session of the day so I have the challenge of exciting the delegates, with getting some energy in the room. I was fascinated by the enthusiasm from the audience when I presented last month in San Francisco, so it'll be interesting to compare the two.

Now, I was briefed by event organiser Marina Starodubska (General Director, Partner, Mikhailov&Partners.Ukraine) that social media in Ukraine has not yet gained the momentum it has in Europe and the USA for example. She estimates that household broadband Internet penetration is just 26% [updated following the first comment below]. Interestingly, however, according to Total Telecom in July last year: "Ukraine as a whole had 55.60 million mobile subscriptions... putting penetration at 121.2%."

Whilst I haven't been able to find a breakdown of feature phones and smart phones, the waiting staff in the restaurant this evening indicated that such devices are booming. In the car to the hotel I also noticed that Nokia is investing in quite a big outdoor advertising campaign here for its feature and smart phones.

My stack for tomorrow is included here. The majority of the slides are taken from the longer stack from last month's Dreamforce, so if you took a look at that, you might not want to take the time here. But it's more the narrative I intend to tailor for this event. The emphasis tomorrow is simple – Public Relations, as defined by the Excellence Study, has a very bright future.

Pre-conference questions

I was asked two questions prior to the conference, and thought I'd share these and my answers with you here...

What tools for measuring PR effectiveness do you find most useful for the modern Communications Director and why?

Your organisation is unique. It occupies a unique position in its marketplace with unique relationships with its stakeholders. Your objectives, strategy and execution are unique. Unsurprisingly, this then demands that you select a unique balance of metrics that tell you: i) how well execution is proceeding; and ii) whether the original strategy remains relevant or needs a tweak or an overhaul.

The right tools for you are the ones that allow you to best monitor your particular balance of metrics.

Why did you decide to talk about Influence Scorecard? What is this approach about and what are its advantages?

The Influence Scorecard augments the Balanced Scorecard – the dominant business performance management (BPM) framework adopted by the majority of the Global 2000.

It identifies influence as the highest common factor unifying the otherwise disparate C-level executive roles. It helps everyone in the organisation appreciate that everyone is responsible for the ease with which the organisation influences stakeholders and systematically ensures it's influenced back.

I call this the business of influence. It creates the social enterprise.

6 thoughts on “The Role of PR in a Digital Age

  1. Philip, thank you very much for the presentation at the PR Congress today. For the sake of accuracy, please let me note that broadband penetration is at 26%, not overall Internet penetration, as you implied, While I agree with you that it's still low, it's growing very quickly. Also, recently Ukraine as listed as the country with 6th fastest Internet in the world. Social media adoption is very wide: according to Universal McCann, 81% of Internet users also use social media. That said, thank you for an interesting, informative presentation. I jotted down several ideas and action items for myself, and I'll be sure to buy your book!

  2. Yarnya,

    Thank you so much for your rapid feedback.

    I have now changed "household Internet penetration is just 25%" to "household broadband Internet penetration is just 26%" in the post.

  3. Dear Philip, that's sad you had to catch your flight and coulnd't join me and Yaryna for the digital workshop later in the day of the Congress. I hope you'll find the presentation of the research I've conducted recently on social media and PR practice in Ukraine useful. You can have a look at it on Slideshare Thank you for your visit to Ukraine!

  4. Hi Oskana, I know! The flight times to and from Kiev weren't ideal!

    Thanks for sharing your slidestack though... I've just taken a good look. Some great detail and observations, thank you.

What do you think?...