The Future of Public Relations

The Future of Public Relations

A conversation with Stacey Miller of Cision

The Future of Public Relations

Stacey Miller is not only the Senior Social and Media Relations Manager at Cision: she’s also one of the most well-respected voices at the cross-section of social media and traditional PR. A keynote speaker, her writing has appeared in Forbes, American Express Open Forum, and the Washington Business Journal, having authored over 500 blog articles herself. Stacey is consistently mentioned in “top people to follow” and “up and coming pros” lists, and has even been named a finalist for Oracle’s Community Manager of the Year Award.

We recently sat down with Stacey to get a sense of her daily routine, why customers choose to work with Cision, and some myths about PR that you shouldn’t fall for:

What does your daily work routine include?

My daily work routine today is probably my favorite out of the many roles I’ve had while at the company for almost nine years now. Currently, I’m doing research and analysis on one of our services to improve it for clients as well as journalists. The end goal is to create stronger relationships with members of the media and to offer everything we can to help their important role in the news cycle. So my day is filled with primary research, analysis, mapping and planning of an executable strategy to bridge the media-PR gap. I love it because relationships are truly at the heart of great PR.

What would you say is the “Cision difference” – i.e. what sets you apart from competitors?

Ever since Vocus combined with Cision, we truly are the largest public relations software provider in the world. With the largest media database, the most news distribution options, and integrated social media software and analytics from Visible, our holistic approach to PR helps communication professionals at businesses of all sizes. The largest brands in the world rely on us for their PR and social programs. At Cision, we truly love what we do and are experts at doing it. We’re pros serving pros! These are just some of our top differentiators.

What lies ahead for the future of PR software? What are 1-3 predictions you’d make about your category over the next few years?

The competition in the PR software category is fierce. But the cake will go to those that are expanding and evolving to meet the needs of the industry. PR pros today are so much more than phone calls to reporters and press releases – they’re well-rounded communicators, digital analysts and relationship builders. My predictions about the future of PR software:

1) Because relationships are at the forefront of public relations, new tools will become available to have better conversations with the media.

2) Lots of software providers include analytics, but analytics are nothing without insights. We’ll see evolving software that can derive insights and an increase in data analytics job roles.

3) The PR ROI conversation is also going to continue to surge. Creating first-touch attribution paths that show that “X media mention resulted in this inquiry and this much in revenue growth” may not be a universal standard now, but many pros are getting close to it.

What’s the biggest myth or two about PR you’d like to set people straight on?

The biggest myth about PR I’d like to set people straight on is that it’s not necessary anymore. The Internet and social media have made it so that brands are publishers, which some people think means that you don’t need to go through the media “gatekeepers” to get coverage anymore. While that may sometimes be the case, a strong PR foundation is essential for any brand and requires, planning, strategy and that underlying theme I keep stressing: relationships to sustain growth and scale. Banking on a piece of content going viral, newsjacking and real-time marketing are not always sustainable.

What’s it like being a part of the DC Tech scene? What are 3 area tech companies that people need to be following?

Being a part of the DC tech scene is exciting! I think it’s different than other tech scenes like those in New York, Chicago or San Francisco, but today, it’s being called “the next Silicon Valley.” Vocus has been in the DC area for 25 years now, so it’s neat to say that we’ve been a part of the DC tech scene before it was “cool.” There are also a lot of new startups in the city, and some of these newer tech companies are absolutely crushing it at national industry conferences and making DC hot. It makes me proud to say I’ve been in the DC tech scene for my whole career!

DC Tech companies people need to be following: FiscalNote (software that can forecast legislative outcomes – whoa), Kit Check (technology for pharmaceutical kit processing efficiency in hospitals – amazing) and M3D (first consumer micro 3D printer, one of the largest funded projects on Kickstarter).


Want more from Stacey? You can find her on LinkedIn, or connect with her on Twitter.

Jeremy Goldman has been working with companies looking to take their operations online and inject “social” into their processes for over a decade. After a career at L'Oreal and Unilever, Jeremy founded Firebrand Group. His views have been featured in publications such as Inc., Mashable, Wall Street Journal, Smart Money, ReadWriteWeb, and The Next Web. His first book, Going Social: Excite Customers, Generate Buzz, and Energize Your Brand with the Power of Social Media hit the #1 spot on for social media and business.