Should I bother with traditional media when it comes to furthering my thought leadership ambitions, I hear you ask?  With the upsurge of social media, blogging, podcasting, videos and content marketing, hasn’t this communication channel outlived its usefulness?

My answer is a categorical ‘No’.

Publicity still remains one of the most effective tools in any thought leadership war chest. In fact given that it is increasingly harder to land a story, successfully securing coverage and becoming a regular media commentary is viewed as a critical milestone in any thought leadership journey.

From my experience, each time a client of mine is mentioned in the media, their authority levels go through the roof. This is the power of publicity.

So why exactly is publicity important?

  1. You gain third party credibility

While attracting the attention of key social media influencers and securing online endorsement is vital to building an individual or business’s reputation and credibility, third party endorsement from the media carries significantly more weight.

Securing publicity in a key mainstream or specialist masthead or scoring an interview on prime-time television or drive-time radio, is far more powerful than being interviewed for web TV or writing a blog. In fact many a savvy public relations practitioner or publicist understands the importance of kicking off a client’s communications and marketing campaign with garnering some high profile publicity.

Over the years I have seen many a client move from relative obscurity to high visibility thanks to a sustained media campaign positioning them as experts in their field. Because people like working with experts, this has had a positive impact on growing their client base, garnering them valuable relationships and even attracting the attention of regulators and legislators.

More recently with fake news now flooding the net, third party media endorsement is more important than ever. A recent Pew Research study out of the US shows that more people trust news coming directly from the news media than they do from social media, even in an era of profound distrust for the news media.

  1. Thought leaders can reach a mass audience fast

Major news outlets are easily one of the best channels for reaching a large audience at once.

According to the latest annual survey of news consumption in Australia, Digital News Report: Australia 2017, the largest proportion of Australians continue to consume news directly from traditional news sources.

When asked where they had accessed their news in the week prior to the research, 50% said they watched TV news, 46% used social media for news, and 36% listened to radio news. ABC News, Channels 7, 9 and TEN news were the most consumed traditional news media, while, ABC News Online,, and Yahoo!7 were the most accessed online platforms.

While it takes time to build followers and connections online, if done well, coverage in traditional media can quite literally build your reputation overnight.

  1. Traditional media has a significant social media presence

Most traditional media outlets also have an internet presence – such as blogs and social networking profiles – which means that once your story has appeared in a publication it is likely to get an even greater airing online.

In fact media websites usually get significantly more traffic than the most popular blog!

  1. Traditional media fuels social media

Bloggers and social media influencers often write about what’s going on in traditional media. Chances are if you land an interview in traditional media, you’re likely to catch the attention of the online world which is why many online stories often only take off once traditional media has given them an airing.

  1. Thought leaders can improve their Google ranking

Traditional media not only helps your credibility with real people, it also boosts your credibility with Google. Successful search engine optimization includes having your website linked to other authoritative websites. If a major news outlet puts a link to your website in a news article and shares it on social media, it will help increase your search rankings as well.


So if you’re thinking of overlooking traditional media in favour of other thought leadership channels – don’t!

Like it or not, traditional media continues to carry enormous clout and success in this arena remains one of the high points of all thought leadership activity.

If you are interested in learning more about thought leadership, Parker Public Relations provides ongoing mentoring and coaching or alternatively you can book in for a three-hour strategy and planning session which will enable you to rapidly kick-start your thought leadership journey.

Let us know if you are interested in coaching or a strategy workshop. To get in touch, click here, or contact Wendy at