The PRNEWS editorial team offers predictions and important trends for 2023.
Seth Arenstein, Editor, PRNEWS and Crisis Insider
Churchill’s description of the Soviet Union as a “riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma” applies to parts of the U.S. federal government, whose embrace of transparency is spotty. Still, we’ll breach the unknown and predict increased federal (and state) regulation of macro-influencers, like Tom Brady, Steph Curry, Larry David and Kevin O’Leary, and organizations, like Major League Baseball, in the wake of the FTX/SBF brouhaha. In addition, heed revised influencer regulations the FTC promises for 2023. Will PR darling TikTok survive its unanimous denunciation in the Senate Dec. 14? Probably.
Discussion about robots and AI replacing humans predates recent ChatGPT chatter. As impressive as ChatGPT seems, there are prosaic hurdles PR technology (and the humans who use it) must clear. In 2023, communicators still will rely on tools that send pitches written as if there are no humans behind them. (A reporter receiving your automated pitch created a great story about your CEO days ago. The automated media list doesn't care. She's still just one of 3,000 names on a list.) With money tight and mass pitching working a bit, there's little reason to think things will improve much in 2023.
Erika Bradbury, Editorial Director
The media landscape will evolve as new trends emerge, but the spotlight on trust and authenticity will remain. Consider the importance of influencers in your media strategy. As trust in media has diminished, more consumers are relying on influencers, celebrity or otherwise, as they gather information. (Stay tuned for an article on the topic in early 2023). We saw this in droves for campaigns around COVID vaccines, for example.
Relationships with influencers often do, and should, look similar to those PR pros seek with journalists. While the medium is different, the messaging is just as important, and getting it right can come down to having established that long-term relationship. Influencer marketing is here to stay, so organizations that haven't explored it need to at least start to dip their toes in.
Tai Nichols, Content Manager
Online communities have become an important part of the social media landscape in 2022, allowing people to find and engage in niche discussions. In 2023, brands will create or fortify online communities to share and engage with audiences. With the popularity of niche online communities, and a rejection of popular platforms such as Twitter, we will likely see new social media channels contending in 2023. We might also find new, hidden, or forgotten value in less-popular networks, like Tumblr.
We’re seeing a lot of conversation about AI at the close of 2022. AI will add to the list of misinformation and disinformation challenges, while also increasing distrust of the media. It could be interesting to see how rules for sourced images and/or text attribution will evolve throughout the year.
Nicole Schuman, Senior Editor
Journalists will continue to find themselves silenced and in hostile situations, particularly as public forums like Twitter adopt rules about “free speech.” These occurrences will give reporters pause when developing relationships with sources and gathering information. Trust will not only be an issue for public information, but media relations. Can journalists trust communicators to provide information at critical points or will they go elsewhere to get an accurate story? Brands, organizations and communicators must establish solid partnerships and support journalists. Even when certain audiences may not agree with actions or decisions, the truth will set brands free.
Communicators should also explore alternative platforms to Twitter, such as Mastodon, Discord, Counter.Social and Post. Consider establishing relationships on these channels with journalists who are abandoning the big blue bird app. Also employ social listening tools on them as you stretch your reputation-monitoring legs.
To our PRNEWS community—thank you for reading and engaging with us this year. And the best to you in 2023.