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People looking at their phone seeing a public relations release reacting positively
Kristopher CrockettNovember 20152 min read

Understanding the Importance and Challenges of Online Public Relations

One often utilized yet somewhat misunderstood avenue for internet marketing is online PR. It is misunderstood because people often think that it is another form of advertising. It also wrong for people to think that online public relations work is easy and can be used by anyone for their business. Before we tackle the reason why online PR is important to companies, let us first understand what it is.

Online Public Relations is basically similar to traditional public relations, but is used online and with the help of media and influencers found on the internet. The purpose of online PR is similar to that of traditional PR as well, and that is to build lasting and beneficial relationships between the company and the public, or more specifically, its target market. As straightforward as the goal may seem, the road to such an end result is far from easy.

The Challenges

The reason why public relations, both online and offline, is difficult is because every company has competition, and the competition will have both loyal followers and their own public relations tactics as well. Some companies may play nice and try to win over the same market you are trying to capture with fair strategies. Some may employ dirty tactics with the use of outside sources to discredit your business. This may include smear campaigns on your company’s website comments section, your Facebook page, and even your twitter account.

In order to avoid the problems that may come with such tactics, you need to be on top of your online public relations platforms, and that means having someone keep a close eye on your online posts and social media profiles. You will also need to be able to defend whatever news posts and announcements your company creates online, and be ready with appropriate answers to any questions that may come your way with these posts that you make.

The Importance

While online PR may seem like a nightmare to many due to the openness you have with the public and the freedom they have to comment and throw questions at you, it is actually a necessary tool for getting your company noticed and your business to be seen by your target market. As long as you are prepared with the right answers and have someone ready to take on reputation management with your online presence, you will find that online public relations is not really as scary as some people make it out to be.

If you are thinking you cannot handle such problems that come with having online portals people can comment on, and decide not to use such an avenue, you are making a mistake. Not having an online presence, both in the form of your website and with accounts that the public can use to interact with you, is a bad idea. The reason why even the most established and the biggest companies in the world have gone online is because everyone is online. You will lose out on the thousands, even millions, of opportunities to earn if you do not use all the online avenues that are available to your business, and online public relations is one of those avenues.


Kristopher Crockett

Kristopher M. Crockett, President & CEO of Selworthy, brings over a decade of innovative, solution-centric marketing expertise to the table. His profound understanding of marketplace trends and dynamic leadership propels Selworthy's mission to deliver bespoke digital solutions, enhancing client ROI and bridging the digital divide.