Losing control in Manchester….

It’s clear that the benefits of many of the new online tools – blogs, RSS and in particular podcasting – are becoming apparent to a growing number of PR practitioners. Having just returned from Philip Young’s “Delivering the New PR” event in Manchester, it really is fantastic to see the interest in how these tools can impact reputation and communication.

There were great questions, great discussions and while people see the potential of these tools, they also clearly see the potential issues.

For me personally, one of the highlights was catching up with Chris, Elizabeth, Neville, Philip and Stuart (as well as Nicky and the team at Don’t Panic)

At this event, and in other speaking engagements I’ve done over the past few weeks, one of the most interesting things is seeing people really think about the benefits, but more importantly, the implications of “new media” – a term I really don’t like. Yes conversation is good, Yes these tools (podcasts are particularly hot right now) open new avenues for organizations, but there are also issues. If you engage in a conversation then you are going to have to reliquish some control. That’s a major behvioural change for many PR people, but at least everyone recognizes it. There were a lot of interesting questions both on the floor and during the tea and lunch breaks, many of which I’ll discuss here in the future.

It was a great event and the good news is that we’ll be attending a third event in London in May. So someone is listening!