Perhaps the most potent symbol of PR's evolution in recent years is the seeming scarcity of "public relations" and "PR" in job titles. The growth of PR itself is to blame. The term "PR" hardly encompasses what brand communicators are now asked to do by their organizations or clients. If you're charged with building brand awareness and you're not placing ads in print publications—I saw one of those just last week—or working with an ad agency on a TV campaign, you're doing some form of PR, whether you're aware of it or not.
The PR pro of 2000 had to master media relations, crisis communications, internal communications, media training and change management. The brand communicator of 2017 very likely must master those same areas, as well as social media, data and analytics, visual storytelling, influencer marketing, SEO, content marketing and even advertising. This expansion of PR has been driven by technology, of course, but also by the communicators themselves, each of whom must be a jack of all trades and master of all.
PR News recently asked its community to tell us who should be listed among the top game-changers of PR in the last few years—individuals who have been accelerating the expansion and growth of brand communication. Here is our list of 50 Game-Changers of PR, culled from our community's submissions.
—Steve Goldstein, editorial director, PR News @SGoldsteinAI