The ever-changing dynamic in the media industry, combined with the advent of rapid digitization, has altered the landscape of storytelling immensely; resulting in a huge impact on the PR industry. To provide insight into this, Mrs. Sonali Yohan Irani, an expert in marketing, spoke to Batch 2022 on 4th June, 2021.
With almost 10 years of marketing experience, Sonali has garnered immense exposure across various Indian industries. She started her career with internships at eminent companies like Deutsche Bank and Tech Mahindra, followed by her association with Hover Automotive India as a Marketing Associate. Sonali has also worked with Mercedes-Benz India as a Marketing Communications Manager in the Event Management department for four years.
At the onset of her lecture on the topic ‘Generation Z vs.the Millennial’ Sonali said, “Gen Z is on track for being the most ethically diverse and educated generation in history.” Though the average population in India still largely consumes media through television, the shift to complete digitization is not very far away. She added that, “the pace of change in media today is rapid and ever-evolving.”
Digital transformation of PR was the most weighted topic of the discussion. Sonali explained the ‘Age of Influence’ through social media, content, and influencer relations. Earned media has been the core capability of PR for a very long time. Digital transformation has redefined the core expertise of this profession. Today, not only Gen Z, but even millennials believe in the power of digital influence.
Sonali talked about the Second Technology Revolution which will be driven by data, immersive technologies, and machines. According to her, the future of communications will be shaped and transformed by augmented digital influences; and this includes augmented reality, virtual reality, mixed reality, artificial intelligence, automation, big data and analytics.
Towards the end of the lecture, Sonali spoke about blockchain, pointing out that blockchain is most likely to transform social networking in the future. This could be done through authentication of the legitimacy of content, removal of the user as the product, compensation for posts and influencers, improving security, in-app payments, networked vs. individual control over content, freedom to access information, verified marketplaces, in-app tokens, and verifying online identities.
Sonali concluded the lecture by stating that the communications industry is at a turning point, and there is ample scope for exciting options and explorations. With her wide-ranging experience and expertise, she has motivated Batch 2022 to dig deeper into digital influences on storytelling in the PR Industry. Mrs. Sonali Yohan Irani has certainly opened up a broader perspective to what students can expect in Communication Management in the future.