Customs Spokespersons Urged to Utilise Digital Media for Public Communication
Public Relations Officers (PROs) of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) have been urged to utilise Digital Media tools for public communication.
The call was made at a Training Retreat organised by the service for its spokespersons and public communicators.
Speaking on the theme of the programme, the Commandant Customs Training College (CTC), Ikeja, Comptroller Kalamu Ayinde Aremu pointed out that the management of the online reputation and brand identity of an organisation through the purposeful use of digital and social technologies are essential in digital age.
“Public communicators should develop passion for their profession by being innovative and creative in their messaging, especially in this digital age,” he said.
The national spokesperson of the Customs, DC Timi Bomodi, said the workshop was specifically designed to equip officers of the Public Relations unit of the Service with the tools necessary to serve as positive perception enablers.
“Projecting the image of any organisation can be a formidable task. Projecting the image of an organisation whose roles are often misunderstood, misconstrued and sometimes deliberately distorted can be herculean and daunting.
“However, despite the challenges, our job as PR practitioners is to correct these perceptions through constant engagement with our publics. Information management especially in an environment like ours can be difficult.
“That is why we have to keep updating ourselves with the necessary tools that will enable us feed our publics with the right information and at the right time. Thankfully we have in our midst resource persons for this retreat who have distinguished themselves in the practise,” he said.
In his presentation on ‘Effective Public Communication in a Digital Age,’ the Editor-in-Chief of PRNigeria, Yushau Shuaib said that the advancement in technology has transformed public relations with social media expanding the channels used to engage with new audiences in build reputations.
He said: “With the Immediacy of social media, some of the characteristics of online PR campaigns include deployments of hypertextuality by utilising hyperlinking and web-Linking to posts.
“Similarly multimediality of integrating video, audios and images in Digital media platforms enhance interactivity through comments and engagements.
“The notable tools of engagements are computers, smartphones, editing software, search engine and sharing platforms.”
Other speakers including Dr. Ganiu Okunnu of Lagos State University (LASU) and Abayomi Adisa of British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) in their different presentations on crisis communication and Story Telling urged participants to utilise modern tools of engagement as they practice their profession.
According to them, doing so will help them sustain mutually-beneficial relationships with their target audiences.