The CCO 3.0

New York, NY, USA, April 16, 2019

Technology allows communicators make the best of their profession and foster creativity and networking thanks to data and new automatization tools.

After having revolutionized the market, new technologies have transformed the communicator’s profession and the relationship of companies with their agencies, media and stakeholders. What I mean by “new technologies” is not the digitalization of media and the communication domain in general but the birth of platforms that optimize and sometimes revolutionize the profession itself. Today, communication directors have a lot of distribution, monitoring and measuring tools at their disposal.  The data that manages these tools “increase” the strategical intelligence and aliments the creativity of communication professionals.

Talent unlocking tools

Automatization can sometimes worry. It eliminates low added value tasks like the creation of reporting, the indexation of content, the choice of the right format, file’s update etc. Communication teams are certainly living a confusing period due to the transformation of their profession caused by the disappearance of some missions and their replacement by others, often richer, more creative and sometimes more demanding.

There weren’t PR data scientists in 2016. Now there are some that manipulate data necessary for the evaluation of strategies and for the daily efficiency of communication actions.

Finally, automatization of tasks and information flood give back power to communicators, to their intuition, creativity and their relational and writing skills. Content referencing is a good example. There’s no need to grope around to identify the good hashtag. The communicator produces his tweet and the tool does the rest. The transformation doesn’t affect the content of the press release or an annual result as much as it affects its format (multimedia), its distribution (multichannel) and the analysis of its impact. When distribution is automatized, the value remains in the content.

Relational is back

How to orchestrate a worldwide distribution of a strategic information with different teams that have different professions in different geographical areas? Those are known silos that today’s collaborative tools allow us to break down. These tools optimize the time spent by shortening the steps pf the process for example by facilitating the distribution sequence of a document. All the concerned collaborators (media relations, digital, internal communication, content, investor relations) can interact in real time and validate on a common platform the channels and the targets that concern them. Technology also reinforces the company model that eliminate the regular borderlines between the integrated teams and external consultants.

Automatization has enhanced the relational aspects for the communication profession. Technology allows for example to understand the digital identity and to have a real time overview on the totality of its public publications (tweets, LinkedIn profile, articles) the sufficient information that allow the adaptation to the interlocutor and be more efficient in the relation by encouraging interpersonal skills and the empathy qualities.  Technology doesn’t want and can’t replace human qualities, it encourages its development in order to have a richer and better informed relational.

Are robots information producers?

Is there a risk for communicators whose function relays first of all on human qualities? Many people think that artificial intelligence will start producing content in the future. It is probable, in fact it has already happened with basic, short preformatted content like a product sheet on a commerce site or a daily meeting on the evolution of a company’s action value. This is much less likely with sophisticated and elaborated content. The machine can help but it doesn’t have the “final cut”. 

What happens in the different corporate departments also happens in communication. Technology doesn’t replace but it “increases” the intelligence of people that use it. In order to make the best out of it, companies should encourage their collaborators to use the tools in a positive way and in a suitable framework, without provoking pointless fears in front of change. Because this is probably one of the paradoxes: the more technology is present in communication, the more human values are valorized.

Communicators aren’t all IT engineers. They were often reluctant towards technology. But It is changing.