What Are the Top (Fill in a Number) Public Relations Blogs? The PRDude Finds Out

By Edward M. Bury, APR (aka The PRDude)

In my unquenchable thirst for keeping in step with the ever-evolving practice of public relations, I initiated some primary research. Specifically, a short analysis of the “top” public relations blogs.

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Well, PR Newswire — more precisely an article by the company, not a blog — ranked third in my google search.

Now, what’s “top” certainly is up for debate; and I maintain that both quantitative (like visits and comments) and qualitative (like whether the blogger can craft a lucid, meaningful post) findings should be measured.

For the record, my research was quite rudimentary: I googled “top public relations blogs in 2016” and reviewed the results.

The top three results were, in order:

  1. The Top 50 Public Relations Blogs, a June 28, 2013 post from the nice people at Cision.
  2. 60 of the best Public Relations blogs in the world, published by InkyBee.com.
  3. 2016 Public Relations Trends: Are You Ready for What #PRisNow?, a January 14, 2016 post from PRNewswire.

Okay, so I’ll exclude #3, although the article was well-written and informative, and add another submission from my findings: The Top 10 Public Relations Blogs, a post from a site called Blogworld.com.

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Since it was launched, this blog continually ranks among the “top” public relations blogs.

Before I share some thoughts, I must disclose the following about two blogs that surfaced in my research:

So, I’ll withhold any comments on these two fine online sources geared to us communicators. But here are four very, very general thoughts on the others I visited.

Vehicles for Big Agencies. Not a surprise, but the PR behemoths publish some very impressive blogs that provide a platform to share views, comment on the state of the profession, and of course, help grow the client base. In fact, this agency, which needs no introduction, manages 10 blogs!

I'll bet back in the day, lots of PR pros enjoyed a martini (or two) at lunch.

I’ll bet back in the day, lots of PR pros enjoyed a martini (or two) at lunch.

Whimsical Names. Some PR bloggers thought up attention-grabbing monikers for their sites, something I certainly can relate to. (For the uninitiated, the PRDude is not the pen name for some surfer/slacker named Chad who lives in a shack in the hills above Malibu.) An example is this blog, a mash up of the profession and a famous cocktail.

You Call This a “Blog?” As I understand it, blogs are original content published by the person/organization hosting the site or by a contributor.  Yet, sites like this one — simply an aggregation of posts published by a recruiting company — got rated among the top 50 blogs.

Straightforward PR Blog. To borrow a classic phrase shared in the advertising business, some PR blogs cut through the clutter to provide no-nonsense commentary on the profession.  Visit this site to see what I mean.

Given more time — and I may publish a “part two” analysis — I could analyze much more in the fascinating world of public relations blogging. But I’ll conclude stating that this site is my favorite PR blog at the moment.

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Network. Network. Network. Why I Keep Doing It

By Edward M. Bury, APR (aka The PRDude)

Even at this stage of my career — 30-plus years in public relations and other communications disciplines — I still find it necessary to expand my network.

(Note to self: Where has the time gone? Can I get some of it back? Can someone develop an app for that?)

Yes, that's me in the center of it all, in my role as moderator.

Yes, that’s me in the center of it all, in my role as moderator at recent panel discussion. Photo credit: NAHJ Chicago Chapter.

Given the opportunity and time, I attend events and activities hosted by PRSA Chicago and other organizations. My mantra: Every time you can interact, speak, present, lead or learn, you grow as a professional.

Here’s a case in point. In late April, I moderated a panel discussion hosted by the Chicago chapters of the Hispanic Public Relations Association and National Association of Hispanic Journalists.  The theme: “PR Pros and Journalists Working Together for the Good of the Story.”

The dialogue was spirited, from the panelists and those who attended. Photo credit: NAHJ Chicago Chapter.

The dialogue was spirited, from the panelists and those who attended. Photo credit: NAHJ Chicago Chapter.

The event was hosted at Edelman’s Chicago offices and featured outstanding panelists from local broadcast news, the corporate sector and the agency side of public relations.

You can read my thoughts in this post published on a great industry resource, Hispanic Marketing and PR, a site I’ve contributed to before.  And, visit this page to get a more extensive visual perspective of the afternoon.

So, what did I gain from this exercise:

1.  Better insight on working with the media.

2.  Greater understanding of people who comprise the Hispanic demographic.

3.  Another opportunity to hone my presentation skills.

4.  Promotion of myself and the university research unit where I now manage public affairs.

5.  And, the ability to network with fellow public relations professionals and members of the media and make new friends.

Digital communications has changed the world forever.  And, as I noted in this post from last year, I’ve nurtured some great virtual friendships.

Still, to me, interpersonal communications offer so much more. After all, it’s impossible to shake hands virtually. But I’ll bet someone’s working on an app for that.