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According to a recent poll on politics conducted by the University of Southern California Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism and Los Angeles Times, voters find traditional media outlets more credible than blogs and social media outlets. Specifically:

    • 52 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds intake news from Facebook
    • 37 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds intake news from local TV
    • 12 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds intake news from conservative radio shows
    • 37 percent of Americans watched coverage of the Republican convention this year, down from 56 percent four years ago (Pew Research Center)

While social media venues such as Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are clear disruptors in traditional media viewership, audiences still trust long-established sources such as local TV and newspapers for their political fix.

Lucky for us, public relations professionals can leverage these findings for public policy or public advocacy campaigns. According to PRWeek, Brendan Daly, EVP and National Director for Public Affairs at Ogilvy Washington, suggests a series of tactics to take advantage.

    • Conduct satellite media tours;
    • Coordinate in-person meetings with editorial boards; and
    • Publish op/eds or bylined articles

Now, don’t go and eliminate all social media efforts, but do integrate more traditional methodology in your campaigns such as those mentioned by Daly. By utilizing traditional outlets in conjunction with social media, your key messages are sure to reach their appropriate channels.