Discussion, Dialogue, Discourse| Understanding Dialogue and Engagement Through Communication Experts' Use of Interactive Writing to Build Relationships

Betsy D. Anderson, Rebecca Swenson, Nathan D. Gilkerson


Dialogic communication is an important public relations theory, yet scholarship has found few organizations using it to its full potential. Meanwhile, multiple overlapping definitions exist for related terms like engagement, interactivity, and responsiveness, causing potential confusion for researchers and professionals. This research reports the results of in-depth interviews with top digital public relations professionals regarding how they use interactive writing, a form of social media engagement, to build relationships. Through their own unprompted words, the research also describes how professionals use terms such as dialogue, engagement, interactivity, and responsiveness, and corresponding definitions, to refer to their daily work. Our model clarifies relationships between similar concepts and recommends areas of future research to advance theory informed by practice


dialogic communication, engagement, interactivity, public relations, responsiveness, social media

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