Traditional vs digital media in PR—key strategic differences

by | Mar 23, 2021 | Public Relations

Over the last couple of decades, media—and with it, public relations—has both gone through monumental shifts and changes due to the ongoing evolution of the digital age. Both traditional and digital media have a lot of benefits in public relations and have their own ways of reaching audiences.


With traditional media and PR, there are strategies that allow companies to gain brand coverage in print, such as newspapers and magazines, as well as broadcasting outlets such as radio and TV.

On the other hand, with digital media and PR, it’s all about digital marketing strategies that are utilized to boost a company’s digital visibility and presence on online media outlets, social media platforms, and search engine results.

Both traditional and digital media are utilized in PR for brand awareness, crisis situations, reputation management, or advocacy. Yet the way these things are approached differ in both media forms.

Digital media is grounded in traditional media. With digital media and PR, companies should understand how to target their audiences on online platforms. While with traditional media and PR, companies are able to target a bigger number of people.

However, to create a digital PR campaign, companies have to utilize various online strategies such as quality link building that supports SEO strategies, social media, content marketing, influencer outreach, and more.

Digital PR strategies

One tried and tested strategy that can build brand awareness and boost a company’s SEO is high-quality backlinks. Companies can publish and share high-quality articles that the target audience finds both valuable and interesting. Linking to the brand’s website can also generate a lot of traffic. At the same time, these articles also boost the company’s SEO through link building from relevant authoritative and influential websites.

Another key strategy is content marketing, where brands tell compelling stories about the product or business that resonates with the customers. To really attract people’s attention and have the story stick in their minds, brands need strong narratives that can be created in various ways—from videos to graphics, to articles.

Then, there’s also influencer marketing, which has skyrocketed in popularity in recent years, as influencers with big and engaging audiences from various industries have earned their spot in brand promotion.

Finally, there are social media platforms where brands can capture the target audience’s attention and listen to what people have to say about the brand. Through social listening, companies can learn what works best for different segments of the target audience and update or tailor their marketing campaigns accordingly.

Companies can also spark conversations on social media and create a community around their brands to strengthen the relationship with the consumers and build trust.

To get the most out of any campaign, brands should analyze the differences and benefits of both traditional and digital media in their digital PR and marketing campaigns, to ensure each one is utilized to its full advantage.

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Ronn Torossian
Ronn Torossian is the Founder and CEO of 5W Public Relations: 5WPR is one of the 20 largest PR Firms in the United States.


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