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March 19, 2010


The professionalism that PR brings to the table can benefit digital disciplines like search engine optimization, while digital can handle situations like online crises that "traditional" PR may not be prepared to tackle, says Fionn Downhill, CEO of Arizona-based digital consultancy Elixir Interactive.

She said bridging "traditional" PR and the online space, which are very different, will benefit both sides in the long run.

A key element of that merger is recognizing the online space as requiring a different approach than "traditional" PR.

"You can't spin the web," she said. "It's very important for PR agencies to survive that they embrace the fact that PR is, in fact, online and that's where they need to be concentrating their efforts."

Digital monitoring, although similar in some respects to "offline" PR, differs greatly from traditional PR monitoring, she says.

"It's how many times you get mentioned online, what's being said about you, is it positive or negative," she said, noting similarities. "[But] what happens is that with traditional PR they don't understand the online space in some cases so they knows there's a problem, they just don't know how to advise the client how to respond to it and how to deal with it."

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