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Big Data in the PR Industry



Life has turned towards progressive technology, transforming how we work today. In just a few months, we experienced a significant uptake of new technology that typically would have taken several years. Businesses across all industries understand that to remain competitive in this new landscape requires new strategies and practices. 

Findings from a recent survey at McKinsey suggest that most business leaders recognise the importance of technology and its influence on strategy and core business values. Businesses that have continued to see results and success during this challenging period tend to include those with a range of technology capabilities that others may lack. McKinsey believes the organisations that value corporate and digital strategies the same are the current leaders. Studies indicate that clients that experimented with new digital technologies during the crisis have experienced higher revenue growth than other competitors.

The need for speed

The rate of digital transformation has sparked a growing hunger for speed and for work to be executed more efficiently and quickly. Technology has become embedded in all parts of our lives, in work and from a personal perspective. This rise has generated significant amounts of data, a deeper insightful information trail of more data available for analysis. The data is out there, but the challenge is interpreting the right information and putting it to value.

Industry experts believe the PR industry is exploring new channels and utilising new technology and automation tools to enhance their business. There is a growing appetite for this technology, and with a reduction in various barriers, the availability and application of new technology is becoming simpler.

Last year highlighted the need for businesses to remain agile, to be capable of adapting in unpredictable times, whether this is in terms of changing plans, responding to new issues or potential customer concerns. Another vital element is the integration process, how a business can successfully integrate technology into their organisation. 

Determining your strategy is the key

Alongside the number of leading data providers are a growing number of niche technology platforms offering a range of solutions for agencies. With so many options available, the priority is determining our requirements as a business, and how new technology can make this achievable. There are multiple solutions available in AI, deep learning and data visualisation, all capable of enhancing industry.

Businesses must consider their overall strategy and how they can add value to each brand partner. Agencies also have to determine how they intend to support a client in this changing space and how they will meet their expectations. 

Today’s industry is heavily dependent on speed and analysis, and the main challenge for technology in PR industry lies with processing change. Remaining agile and carefully considering how to use and integrate technology into a strategy. 

Information is widely available today, but understanding what details are of value and effectively applying it is the real test. PR businesses need to understand their relationship with their clients and how the last year has altered and will inevitably continue changing the dynamics. Whether this involves focusing on execution or metrics and analysis, there is a need to research and determine how your business will continue to add value to your clients.

Defining your strategy should remain the top priority, with determining which technology as the secondary option. Being capable of monitoring an issue, trend or whatever it may be is when you can decide what technology solutions your business requires.

Being open and adaptable to new technology

There is no single software vendor out there on the market capable of doing everything a business requires. Businesses shouldn’t depend on one single provider to meet their technology requirements. Instead, they should determine the benefits and value of each product, be capable of monitoring success and prepared to adapt or switch technology solutions if needed. In the end, the real value to your clients will not come from the technology you use, but how you use the tools and apply the information. Industry analysts believe businesses should be exploring new technology options now particularly with organisations being under more economic strain and looking to squeeze more value out of their services. This added pressure will only encourage further progression in the technology market.

The concept of reaching a tipping point with technology adoption or digital disruption isn’t anything new. Studies indicate, however, that the impacts of the pandemic are creating a tipping point beyond any expectations. Reports suggest that we can learn from the measures businesses have already taken. One particular area is the value of learning, making changes to businesses, what technologies to utilise and how to use them appropriately. The other key area is organising priorities and managing change at a far quicker rate than before. Both are likely to continue being important this year as signs suggest that the pace of transformation is unlikely to slow anytime soon.

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