Each month we have been reaching out to notable communications professionals to ask them a few questions about their experiences and interests, with the goal of providing some insights to others in the industry. For our latest edition of ‘Questions for the PR Industry’ we spoke with Gini Dietrich, author of Spin Sucks and CEO of Arment Dietrich.
CEO of Arment Dietrich, author of Spin Sucks
Why do you work in PR?
I landed a job at a PR firm right out of college—without really knowing what I was going to be doing with the rest of my life—and here I am. I have a vision for the industry, which is to change the perception people have about us (we’re not liars or spin doctors), and moving that forward keeps me very passionate.
What is your opinion on AVE and other forms of PR measurement?
AVEs are ridiculous. It irks me that they’re still considered THE way to measure our efforts. We have a three-pronged approach to PR: Awareness, SEO, and lead generation. If your efforts don’t hit all three of those goals, you’re not doing it right. Unfortunately, most PR pros stop at awareness and don’t take it further than that. If you don’t take it to SEO and lead generation, the only way you’ll ever be able to “measure” your efforts is with AVEs and media impressions. This is a sticking point for me. And it separates those old regime who refuse to change and the new, who embrace technology and are excited that data gives us new purpose and a way to show we’re an investment, not an expense.
What media outlets do you follow on a regular basis and why?
Oh, man. It changes daily! I’ll tell you what I read this morning:
- Washington Post
- LinkedIn Pulse
- NY Times
- James Altucher
- The Outreach Marketer from GroupHigh
- The PR column on Forbes
- Wall Street Journal
- The Orbit Media newsletter
I tend to be a reader of whatever hits my screen each morning. I have a Feedly account and subscribe to a bunch of stuff, but hardly ever get in there anymore. Everything I’ve listed above was sent to me or has something to do with the PR industry.
What do you see as the future of the industry?
I believe the future it already here, but many in the industry have yet to embrace it. We talk about mobile marketing on Spin Sucks, quite a bit, because reaching people “in their pockets” is something the PR industry has yet to embrace. I also wrote last week about PR being more than media relations because many in our industry think that’s all there is to it…and when they evolve to social media or content marketing, they no longer consider themselves PR pros. It’s sad, really. You don’t see advertising or marketing professionals start to call themselves something else because they have learned a new skill or adopted a new technology. It goes back to what I was saying earlier. The industry has such a bad reputation that people want to distance themselves as soon as they can. I want to change that.
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