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Social business is the future of public relations

Here’s my deck and a related paper from my All Business is Social: The Bigger Opportunity for Public Relations session at the PRSA International Conference in Washington DC today.

The session explored the change management challenges facing the industry in shifting through four stages of development from publicity to influencer relations, community management and social business.

Social forms of media are driving public relations into every area of an organisation from communication to customer service, and from product development to sales. Public relations is becoming the eyes, ears, mouth and conscience of an organisation.

I described the opportunities in each area for progressive public relations agencies and communications departments, and the organisational model and evolution that each requires.

Here’s my deck.


Here’s a paper that I wrote to support the event.

The speech at the PRSA conference was part of a broader initiative as one of my 10 Pledges as CIPR President for 2014 that has seen us engage on issues relating to the future of the profession with different sectors and geographic markets.

During the year I’ve spoken on behalf of members CIPR at events including BledCom, Bled; Debating Group, House of Commons; PRSA International Conference, Washington DC; the World PR Forum, Madrid; and Upload, Lisbon.

The PRSA is a community of more than 20,000 practitioners in the US. Its international conference Leading the Way: A Fearless Future for Public Relations is taking place in Washington DC from 12 to 14 October. You can follow the event on Twitter via the hashtag #PRSAICON.

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Stephen Waddington

Partner and Chief Engagement Officer, Ketchum and Visiting Professor in Practice, Newcastle University.

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