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Home » AI tops media relations as an important skill for success in PR, finds new Muck Rack report

Capitol Communicator reports that AI tops media relations as an important skill for success in PR, finds a new Muck Rack report.

AI tops media relations as an important skill for success in PR, finds new Muck Rack report

by | Jun 6, 2024

The vast majority of PR professionals feel that leadership understands their work at least somewhat well, with more than half of those at agencies feeling very valued by leadership, compared to only 22% of those at brands, according to Muck Rack’s sixth annual State of PR report.

The 2024 report, which surveyed more than 1,100 PR professionals on the current state of the industry, also found that despite nearly half of PR professionals reporting lack of sufficient resources as a top concern, most expect their budgets to stay the same or increase over the next year.

“It’s always been a challenge for communicators to showcase the value of earned media, but we’ve seen a shift in recent years as leadership’s understanding and appreciation of PR and its impact on a company’s bottom line grows,” said Gregory Galant, cofounder and CEO at Muck Rack. “Companies need to continue investing in building a strong communications function to ensure the right messages are reaching their target audiences, that they’re maintaining a positive brand reputation and that employees are supported through strategic internal communication.”

AI and Social Media

Forty-four percent say their companies need to incorporate AI tools into their workflow to ensure success in the next five years, a 13% increase from last year. AI now ranks as a higher priority than media relations and is just below strategic planning.

Half of PR pros say LinkedIn is the social media platform they value most: 61% plan to spend more time on it and 84% use it in social and communication strategies.

Challenges and Diversity

In addition to having enough resources, other top concerns include getting journalist responses (46%) and managing stakeholder expectations (37%).

Diversity continues to be lacking across the industry. Despite more than two-thirds saying their workplace has at least a moderate amount of diversity, over half report little to no diversity in leadership.

Salaries, Work Habits and Personalized Pitching

More than half of PR pros reported working over 40 hours per week, a 9% decrease from last year. The average salary in the US is $84,000.

Most pitch one to two days per week and more than half always research the journalist before sending a pitch. When it comes to finding journalists, 71% use a media database like Muck Rack and 37% say that aligning the pitch with the journalist’s coverage area is the key to success.

Eighty-three percent say that a 1:1 personalized email is the preferred pitching method. The majority also aim for pitches to be under 300 words and sent on Tuesday before noon, with follow-ups sent three to six days later. These findings line-up with most of the journalists’ preferences reported in Muck Rack’s 2024 State of Journalism report, besides that they prefer pitches to be 200 words or less and don’t care what day they’re pitched.

Download the full report here.

About the Author

Capitol Communicator

Capitol Communicator is a unique online and offline resource for Mid-Atlantic advertising, marketing, public relations, digital and media communications professionals. The e-magazine, e-newsletters and events bring together communications professionals, fostering community and providing important information; news; trends; education; and opportunities for networking, career enhancement, business exchange and showcasing great work. Get more information by clicking on Capitol Communicator above.

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