Silicon Valley Watcher - Former FT journalist Tom Foremski reporting from the intersection of technology and media

PR's hand basket to hell

Posted by Tom Foremski - January 27, 2006

My recent post about "where is PR's hand basket to hell?" sparked some spirited debate within the online PR communities. I remain unconvinced that PR can justify a larger spend when the media sector continues to decline.

PR agencies are hiring, they are making money, while the media sector is rapidly falling apart. Online advertising is disrupting mainstream media and blogging will disrupt the PR industry.

Yet the PR industry is saying everything is okay. That is like the man falling past the 33rd floor of building heard saying, "No problem so far..." Jam tomorrow :-)

The PR industry needs to change into a new communications industry. But it can't get there from here. It has business models and products that are profitable (just as newspapers remain profitable).

The business models in the new communications and new media sectors are still in formation, and cannot support the cost structures of the old. That's why the old cannot cross the chasm to the new and that's why there will be considerable disruption ahead.

The winners in the new communications/new media sectors will be new companies, or what I call new rules enterprises. New rules companies are new, and they are formed around the emerging new business models.

Here are some of the rules of new rules enterprises

You start with the lowest cost business model and you grow as the new business models grow. I am a new rules enterprise, I am a journalist blogger with a laptop. To get below my costs you would need to be living rent-free at your parents' home and using your sister's computer :-)

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