We have reached that time of the year where marketing and public relation teams are setting budgets and laying plans for the 2017 market. Public Relation trends have already begun to emerge and 2017 will be an exciting and unique challenge. Let’s take a look at some of the trends that are creating excitement in the industry.

Not-Dot-Com

In the past, everyone wanted their web address to end with .com. That is because .com was the original and people were concerned that using .net, .org, and other domain suffix abbreviations would make it difficult to find them. Originally the suffix .com stood for “commercial”. It was assumed that people setting up websites would primarily do so for business. Then came .net which simply means “Internet service provider”,  Government sites ended their address with .gov and .edu is for educational sites.

2017 will see more suffix changes. Internet providers are seeing a major take-off in sites that end in .Info which is for general use and .biz for business. The trend will grow as more suffixes will be introduced that will pinpoint the information people are looking for. Imagine a domain address that ends in .photography or .art. The internet has matured and Google will treat those domain addresses the same as the .com so there is no worry about being lost in the transition.

Influencer Marketing

Influence marketing is another way to zero in on your target audience. In the PR world, it means targeting a particular type of individual rather than a wider group. While influencer marketing is a lot like “word-of-mouth” marketing, there is a difference. Influencer marketing does rely on people talking about their product, with influencer marketing, they do not have to be loyal consumers. They simply have to approve or spark interest. They message is usually spread via social media which is the current marketing giant. Influencer marketing has been tweaked and is on the table for a big push in 2017.

Contributor Marketing

If you have been paying attention, you know that there are a lot of contributors making their way into the marketing field these days. There are writers, journalist, bloggers and content sites that spend mega resources finding a site to contribute to. In 2017, you will see more expert contributors in the marketing field. PR firms are now able to pick and choose the real expert content and will focus on them. Only contributors with expertise and who will push the firm more firmly into an “authoritative” site will be used. This is an exciting change for the PR field and it stands to make a lot of money for both the contributor and the receiving site.

Thought Leadership

This is not a new term, and in the past, it has been associated with people listening to the executives of their industry, which was anything but new strategy. But thought leadership has evolved to a new way of communication that is taking the PR world by storm. Thought leadership is simply sharing and communicating what works for a company and brainstorming to take that proven technique to a new level. It is no longer just for the executive branch of industry. Managers from all areas of the company share their tidbits of success with transparency. It means knocking down walls and letting out secrets for the purpose of growing the industry. Major companies have been doing this and it works. Look for more thought leadership in companies of all sizes in 2017.

The new year looks promising for public relation teams and marketing firms. This will lead to bigger sales and a new standard in the marketing arena.