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Marty McFlyThe 1985 movie “Back to the Future” and its ‘89 and ’90 sequels took us to 2015.

And now we have arrived to the year where Marty McFly was some 30 years ago.

We don’t have flying cars, but we do have drones.

No hover boards, but plenty of keyboards and motherboards.

Thumbprint locks?  Yep, we’ve got those.

Video telephones?   We’ve done better with Skype, Google Hangouts and Facetime, among others.

Fax machines?  Came and went.

The Chicago Cubs have made some major improvements, but it’s doubtful they’ll be ’15 World Series champs.

As for things not in the movie that have had an impact, there are many.

A number of our colleagues, clients and strategic partners from the ‘80s and ‘90s are still friends of the agency, maintaining both professional and personal relationships.

The Internet was in its infancy.  And with it came a revolution of global connectivity.

We were still reading newspapers in the ‘80s and ‘90s.  That’s not where most of us get our news today.  The media landscape is unrecognizable compared to then.

As for keeping track of the media, the Finderbinder, originally published as printed annual media guide, is now available on-line with real-time updates available to its subscribers.  The hard copy is also still available.

The U.S. Postal Service was the main distributor of news releases, story pitches and press kits. When was the last time a PR person actually mailed something to a reporter?

Ma Bell and the telephone, along with face-to-face meetings, were how we got to know the media.  Then came e-mail and cell phones.

Our tools and tactics haven’t been overly predictable, but one thing has remained constant:

Organizations who understand the value and recognize the importance of reaching their target audiences will be the ones we will see well into the future.

Scott Hanson
Scott Hanson
President Scott is president of HMA Public Relations and a founding member of the Public Relations Global Network. He’s a Phoenix native, husband, father of two and a fan of all sports and a participant in some. Check out Scott's full bio

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