Study: PR wins social media ownership battle

PR trumps marketing when it comes to controlling the social media budget and strategy.

The debate over ownership of social media has largely raged between PR and marketing. In various forums, both sides have made cases for centralizing social media activities under their jurisdictions. According to a just-released study, however, PR is winning, hands down.

Slightly more than one-fourth of companies put between 81 to 100 percent of budgetary control over social media in PR’s hands, compared to marketing, with only 12.6 percent getting the same level of control, according to the sixth Communication and Public Relations Generally Accepted Practices (GAP) study. The study is produced every other year by the Strategic and Public Relations Center at the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism.

Budget isn’t the only factor. Nearly a quarter of respondents said PR has strategic control over social media in their organizations. Only 9 percent of organizations have given strategic oversight to marketing. In fact, just over a quarter of respondents said marketing has no budgetary control at all and about 22 percent said marketing had no strategic control.

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