Public relations are evolving, both due to shifts in popular culture and the evolution of technology. We cannot address everything going on, but we’ll hit the biggest ways public relations are changing. Here are 3 technology trends that are changing the world of public relations. We’ll explain both the technologies themselves and how they are impacting the profession.

Artificial Intelligence in Search Engines

The artificial intelligence behind search engines is already affecting public relations in a number of ways. For example, blasting the exact same press release across dozens of websites will hurt your website if it gets posted there later, since the press release will be hit with a duplicate content penalty. You have to be careful to seek positive press from high authority domains, those that search engines consider more trustworthy.

The positive mentions in newspapers and industry publications have more weight than mentions on a company blog or content mill website. Another shift driven by the AI behind the search engines is the extra weight given to brands over generic keywords, which makes it important to mention your company name and product names in any press release.

Automation of Customer Connections

Customer relationship management software now lets you send tailored marketing emails to various customers based on their purchase history or demographics. You can automatically retweet news articles about your company once a person vets them as suitable for distribution. Now you only need one person reviewing the content found online and feeding the best content for distribution to the social media management tool instead of having several people reviewing content, posting on various platforms and tweeting. If you’re earning an online masters in public relations, these tools will be a standard part of the curriculum.

Social Intelligence Tools

Those with public relations master’s degree know that you need accurate data on what your customers and the public in general think about your company. Artificial intelligence is being used to tease out the real opinion people have of your company by data mining sites like Reddit, Facebook and LinkedIn. You don’t have to take polls about your company after a disaster and wonder about the biases in their answers. Instead, you can use the social intelligence tools or hire a company with expertise in using them to find out what your customers are really saying to each other. You may able be able to use similar data mining tools to find out who exactly has the most influence in shaping public perceptions of your brand or is the most dedicated in spreading negative content about the company.

Technology is changing the face of public relations in more ways than one. Artificial intelligence is altering the very language and distribution methods of public relations content. It is being used to get real world data on public opinion on a company, product or specific issue. Technology is enabling automation of social media and content distribution. Interactive content is being used to shape public perceptions to a greater degree.