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Marc Brailov is a featured contributor to The Definitive Guide to Public Relations in a Shifting Media Landscape.

Here's the complete contribution:

Digital technology is driving two major disruptive trends affecting the public relations (PR) world.

The digital revolution, most obviously, continues to spawn many new communications channels and modes of social interaction. While new communications mediums do create more opportunities for direct customer outreach, they also introduce new risks that those customers will be missed in such outreach and/or that control will be lost over marketing messaging and the shaping of brand perceptions.

This, self-evidently, raises the importance of marketing and PR people closely coordinating their work much more so than they have heretofore. They'll need to act as if they were joined at the hip.

Second, the still-evolving rise of digitally enabled social media has fundamentally changed traditional media and journalism and how journalists work.

That, in turn, is transforming how PR people must work. Today, anyone anywhere anytime can be a journalist — And sometimes dramatically shape the media scene. Numerous examples abound.

Meanwhile, AI is now enabling bots to assume some very basic journalist-type writing functions. Are full-fledged robot journalists far behind?

It's been challenging enough for PR professionals to pitch stories to flesh-and-blood journalists. How will they handle the very daunting challenges of promoting their employers and clients to things that may be a cross between R2-D2 and HAL?

PR professionals may increasingly have to respond to these developments by fighting fire with fire, so to speak, by fully embracing new AI-driven tools to help them keep apace of AI's adoption in journalism and in the earned media.

PR people in the future may routinely harness AI to help them find detailed patterns in the output of media sites to help them pitch to these sites more successfully. Perhaps AI may help PR pros to distinguish bot writers from real journalists and to develop very precise pitch angles that can quickly attract bites in the rapidly moving 24-hour news cycle.

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