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Exploring the Evolution of PR-Media Relations in the Past Twenty Years

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INTRODUCTION: This thesis delves into how PR-media relations evolved in the past 20 years (since 1997). It discusses several aspects of media relations, such as relationships, old and new media relations tools, pitching and predictions about the future of media

INTRODUCTION: This thesis delves into how PR-media relations evolved in the past 20 years (since 1997). It discusses several aspects of media relations, such as relationships, old and new media relations tools, pitching and predictions about the future of media relations. LITERATURE REVIEW: A review of previous literature on media relations guided this research. Past research explained stigmas about the relationship between public relations professionals and journalists, how pitching has evolved, social media's role in modern day media relations and the dynamic between earned and owned media. METHODOLOGY: The research involved a mixed method approach with qualitative and quantitative methods. First, in-depth interviews were conducted with both journalists and public relations professionals who work in Arizona. These interviews were conducted either in-person or over the phone. Second, two in-depth interviews were conducted over the phone with a public relations professional who worked at Intel for over 20 years for a case study. Finally, a survey was distributed to public relations professionals in Arizona via email and through social media websites (Facebook and Twitter) to provide insight on the media relations tactics they have recently utilized, as well as their use of social media. There were also five follow-up interviews conducted with survey respondents. FINDINGS: After conducting these three methods of research, the qualitative (quotes) and quantitative (survey) data were analyzed to provide detailed opinions about media relations including: the relationships between public relations professionals and the media, the use of old and new media relations tools, what an effective pitch looks like, the use of social media, comparisons between less and more experienced PR professionals, and predictions on the future of media relations. DISCUSSION: The findings from this research led to several conclusions regarding media relations such as: the importance of maintaining a trusting and respectful relationship, traditional tools' place in modern day media relations, email's dominance as a media relations tool, the hesitation by PR professionals to use social media as a communication tool with journalists, more experienced PR professionals' lack of hesitation to use social media as a communication tool with journalists, and the prediction that relationships will remain key in media relations despite the changes in media relations tools themselves. CONCLUSION: Based on all of the findings from this research, it was concluded that media relations has evolved to keep up with the changing media landscape, however, traditional tools and practices remain relevant and essential to media relations.

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Date Created
2017-12

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How corporations should respond to a public health or social crisis

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A guide to implementing empathy in crisis communications

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Date Created
2021-05