Date of Award


Document Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts


Media Communications

First Advisor

Emmett Coffey

Second Advisor

Frank O'Donovan


This thesis explores the effects that social media is having on the Public Relations (PR) profession in Ireland it also looks at the characteristics of PR 2.0. In this it aims to look at particular aspects of the industry to see how they are being affected by social media including monitoring, reputation management, communication models and traditional media usage as well as looking at which social media platforms are used. The study will also look at PR professionals opinions on social media in Ireland.

A qualitative research design was chosen for this study and the primary method of data collection was semi-structured, in-depth interviews with PR professionals and social media consultants from both consultancy and in-house roles. A participant who has experienced particular success using social media for communication was also interviewed.

The research findings show that social media has affected the PR industry in Ireland and has been beneficial for those who have embraced it. The study has also discovered that the use of social media for a campaign has to be carefully thought about and researched in order to cater to a particular client’s needs. It is evident that not all campaigns or organisations will find social media to be an appropriate platform to explicate their message.

It can be concluded that for those who do include social media usage within their PR techniques, it is clear that this is not enough in order to have a successful campaign. Traditional media is still important to the PR industry in Ireland. It was also revealed other factors within the profession are affected such as reputation management, but it was popular opinion that this was something that came with the territory of utilising social media tools. It was also found that many professionals have had to upskill in order to keep up with new trends but accept this as they want to use social media to its full effect.


Masters Title: MA Public Relations with New Media

Access Level