Social Media: Taking our jobs or adding value to them? 

Image of a man holding social object with limitless social media platforms.Over the past decade, social media has become the most popular platform for promoting brands, clients, and products. Constant change in social media has resulted in the urgency for new Advertising, Marketing, and Public Relation strategies and tactics. The baby Boomer generation was known to pick up a newspaper or magazine to receive information on the latest news and trends. Today, Millennials gain most of their information from their fingertips.

Social media is a wide range of online applications and media platforms that allow the creation and exchange of user generated content (Kaplan, 2010). The advancement of cell phones to smartphones, desktops to laptops, laptops to tablets, and websites to mobile apps, has depreciated the value of hard news and replaced it with the want for immediate gratification (Mangold, 2009). The public expects to access information in seconds rather than daily. The rising demand for information in seconds has created a multitude of social media platforms, including: Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, Flickr, blogs and many more increasing in popularity and competition constantly.

The effect of social media on the Communications world is evident in the fall of newspapers, magazines, and movement to the digital world and extinction of print.  The Public Relations practice has had to become more creative in ordeImage of a women in confusion over the variety of social media platforms available to her.r to keep up with the publics and organizations constantly changing needs and wants. The age of print press releases is rapidly transforming into all digital and the opportunity for free press is more advantageous than ever before. Social media has become an incredibly profitable tool for public relations practitioners and also has made public relations a valuable necessity for all companies, expanding the profession. So what are the effects of these social media platforms? Have we created a digital bubble that could pop at any moment or are these platforms here to stay?

Image of an Iphone on a travel map, taking a picture of South America.The travel industry, similar to public relations, has had to keep up with the millennial age and move their industry to the Internet, as well. Travel blogs, shared Facebook albums, tweets about exotic and international adventures, snapchats sent on vacation, and Instagram posts of celebrity’s extravagant lives, have caused the public to crave the travel they are consistently exposed to on social media. These social media platforms have become incredible venues for public relations practitioners to attain free press for their organizations and clients.

Social media has become the backbone of successful companies. A business can no longer prosper without it and a student can no longer get a job without understanding it. Our society is dependent on social media and therefor your company should be too!

Still don’t believe me? Check out the Forbes list of the 20 Companies you should be following on social media.

Let us know if you think social media is here to stay and your favorite platforms to use!