The last few years have greatly changed the public relations industry, and when most people start to think about the future, it seems that what’s happening right now is relatively calm. This is largely because the world is about to undergo a tectonic shift that’s going to fundamentally change the way that most businesses and industries currently operate.
The upcoming change is a brand new iteration of the web, titled Web 3.0, and it’s promising to be as big of a change as the web underwent two decades ago, when it became a lot more accessible to consumers, and media businesses and the digital marketing industry were created.
For the PR industry to be able to keep up with this big change, it’s important to stay ahead of any shifts, because Web 3.0 isn’t going to be all about learning a brand new strategy or channel. It’s going to end up changing the way that many businesses operate, the way consumers and businesses make transactions, communicate, entertainment, and potentially, the concept of ownership itself.
That means, to keep up, everyone will have to reimagine the way that the internet operates into something completely new, that’s going to bridge the gap between the physical and the digital worlds. In fact, platforms such as Fortnite and Roblox, while specific to the gaming industry, already have millions of users around the globe that use them on a daily basis to play games, of course, as well as to create, buy, sell, trade, and socialize.
In the last few years, many regulators and consumers have started responding to the way that advertising has managed to start crossing various boundaries and has begun infringing on the privacy of everyday people. At the same time, many marketers have played a big role in the funding and spread of misinformation, disinformation, hate speech, and empowerment of bad actors.
Now, Web 3.0 is promising to become a more intimate space, which can mean that those issues can become a lot more prevalent. That means the PR industry needs to think ahead and figure out some common methodologies, standards, or rules so that corporations can avoid making the same mistakes they’ve already made in Web 2.0.
Although Web 3.0 and the metaverse alongside it are often being described by many experts as a single platform that’s being developed by many in Silicon Valley, that’s not quite the case. In fact, over the past decade, everyone has noted that technology can only progress as far as its most innovative storytellers and creative thinkers. That means brands and media companies will have to play a big role in creating what consumers will be able to do inside the metaverse.
To do that, everyone that’s been trying to adapt to Web 3.0 should also start creating partnerships and developing best practices in VR and AR. Additionally, media companies and marketers will have to make partnerships as early as possible to make the most of this new web, as giant competitors along the likes of Whatsapp and Telegram are going to start popping up, creating their own virtual spaces in no time.
Marketing and Public Relations in Web 3
Since the dawn of time, technology has remained an ever-changing element of daily life that both simplifies and complicates it. A large part of that technology over the last few decades has been the internet, whose first iteration appeared in the 1990s, titled Web 1.0, and has shifted into what it is today, under the name Web 2.0.
Today’s consumers live in a digital-first world, and constantly demand more control over their own privacy and data, as well as greater user utility and decentralization of the internet they’ve come to know and use on a daily basis. This has brought about the slow invention and adoption of Web 3.0, with the introduction and growing prominence of cryptocurrencies, NFTs, and various decentralized spaces and technologies such as the metaverse.
Metaverse and talents
A couple of decades ago, when the web shifted from Web 1.0 to Web 2.0, the proliferation of mobile specialists, ad agencies, and search shops first started. For many around the world, it made perfect sense to compartmentalize the digital media teams from the rest of their companies, up until a certain point.
Now, with Web 3.0 knocking at everyone’s doors, companies can’t leave the latest tools and technologies to be understood, adopted, and perfected by a few individuals, or even completely ignored and overlooked for a long period of time. That means business leaders will need to ensure that everyone inside their companies will have the necessary knowledge and skills relevant to Web 3.0 from the start so that the entire business can take advantage of whatever the new iteration of the web is going to bring to businesses and society at large.
Importance of PR
In Web 3.0, everyone’s opinion is going to be important. Although this is a process that’s slowly being adopted everywhere, it’s going to be even more important in the future, which makes public relations incredibly important for every business.
This is simply because whenever any company will have to make any sort of business decision, it has to take public relations into account too, unlike many have been doing thus far.
In the new iteration of the internet, it’s going to become a lot more difficult for traditional company spokespeople to devote enough time to the large number of statements they’ll have to make on behalf of a company.
Instead of companies needing a PR department or a corporate affairs team, they’ll have to work with entirely separate companies in regards to influencer engagements, as practically everyone will be able to become a spokesperson for a business. This will also entail better monitoring of public sentiment, and more tools that are going to analyze the wealth of consumer data for companies to understand the public sentiment they’re receiving.
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