#ICYMI: PRSA Boston’s The Digital Agency Event
By Caitlin Mahler and Antonia Rutter
Facebook and Twitter and YouTube, oh my! Welcome to the world of the digital agency where these platforms aren’t a faux-pas, they’re a big piece of business. Last week PRSA Boston held a panel discussion on the changing face of agencies in the digital era.
Peter Panagopoulos, director of national marketing, WGBH Educational Foundation, moderated “The Digital Agency” panel which included some big Boston names: Kyle LeTellier, senior marketer, Boston Globe Media; Terry Lozoff, executive vice president, managing director, GYK Antler; Mike Proulx, EVP director of social media, Hill Holiday; and George Snell, senior vice president, digital, Weber Shandwick. The panelists brought unique perspectives on how agencies of various sizes are evolving to incorporate more digital, integrated work—everything from video production to content and community management—and how PR pros, marketers and social media professionals can adapt to best serve our clients.
MSLGROUP Boston PR pros were on hand at the event, some of us furiously live-tweeting (#PRSABos), to share the highlights:
— Mark W. McClennan (@McClennan) July 15, 2014
- Move to mobile – The conversation began with a focus on how people are now accessing content and the clear shift towards consumption on mobile devices. TV shows are no longer confined to the TV, they have become an entity of their own. Peter Panagopoluous (@ptp212) gave an example – Downton Abbey is not a show you only watch on TV—it can be recorded, viewed on a later date on a website, watched on a cellphone, tablet or laptop, it has a social media presence, and is a searchable “property” of its own. The takeaway for companies and brands is to put even more value on content they create as it has the ability to be consumed across multiple forms of media. Mobile-first thinking enables winning campaigns on every size screen.
- Content Creation – George Snell (@HighTalk) reminded us that it’s the quality of content that gets consumers clicking: content “better be shareable” and “better be good.” Telling an authentic story, through meaningful content, can ignite a real-time conversation in the digital space. Terry Lozoff (@TerryLozoff) told us that brands are dumping money into video – which demonstrates the importance of engaging, shareable content.
- PESO! – Paid, earned, shared, and owned media is the cornerstone of content in the digital era. While consumers can’t always discern whether something is organic or paid, it’s about contextual relevancy at the core. We also heard that paid amplification and social are intertwined, especially when maximizing reach of a campaign on digital airwaves.
- Talent Wars – The changing face of media means “nontraditional” PR skills are both coveted and the new agency norm. Agencies are diversifying the candidate pool and adapting hiring strategies to incorporate digital technical specialists (think coding and application and website development), community managers and video production teams to meet new content and creative demands.
— Amanda Fountain (@aefountain) July 15, 2014
Crisis planning involves all agency partners, but PR often still takes the lead #PRSABos
— Caitlin Mahler (@caitlinDmahler) July 15, 2014
Time is of the essence to bring digital strategy to the forefront of PR campaigns. MSLGROUP’s B2B technology and healthcare clients are already adapting to the new social, and digital norm. New ways of thinking are generating new leads, connecting with expanded audiences and broadening opportunities. Let’s get digital!