Nicholas Scibetta and Adam Brown at Ketchum discuss how the art of Public Relations can benefit from blogs in this interview style post on the Ketchum website. Their observations show that they understand the power of blogs to initiate a dialog and their insight into the future points to a rich set of opportunities for savy public relations firms.

do you consider the next steps that public relations must take to ‘own’ blogs and be able to most effectively use this medium for companies and clients?

AB: I think there is about to be a shakedown with blogs. Advertising is trying to own blogs the same way it took ownership of the Internet. But the way information is shared on a blog isn’t appropriate for advertising. Advertising is about a call to action. PR is more about information transfer and information sharing. It’s about changing someone’s thoughts, beliefs, emotions and perceptions of a company, product or brand. And that’s what blogs are about. I think we need to take the initiative and demonstrate what blogs are best suited for. Blogs are for information transfer, and PR is about information transfer, and that’s why the two go together.

NS: That’s a great point. PR has a snug fit with blogs. And we as practitioners need to embrace blogs wholeheartedly. We need to really dig deep to understand what the mindset of bloggers is and what we can do to foster mutually beneficial relationships with them. We are, as Adam said, different from advertising in terms of the call to action and the straight sell. The truth is you couldn’t have asked for a more organic development of a tool to emerge to suit the objectives of PR.

Good PR is about “information transfer” and blogs are great for that. Not only do blogs conduct a signal with little or no impedance but also amplification of that signal if the message is provocative. The one improvement we all need to work on is a way to reduce the distortion of the signal over time and space but that’s a problem that’s as old as history.