Innovation in public relations theory and practice: A transmedia narrative transportation (TNT) approach Academic Article uri icon


  • Purpose The purpose of this paper is to craft a new perspective on how we can view public relations that reflects important trends emerging in the field including digital media, storytelling, engagement and co-creation of meaning. Transmedia storytelling (an idea with some ties to public relations) and narrative transportation theory are synthesized to form the transmedia narrative transportation (TNT) approach to public relations. The paper details the development of the TNT approach and how it can be applied to public relations initiatives. Design/methodology/approach The approach is a literature review to inform the creation of the TNT approach. A case study is used to illustrate the TNT approach. Findings An innovative approach to conceptualizing and creating public relations initiatives is developed, explained and illustrated. Research limitations/implications The paper examines only one case to illustrate the TNT approach. Practical implications The TNT approach develops a new perspective for public relations for developing and executing public relations initiatives. Transmedia storytelling has already been connected to the practice and TNT builds a more comprehensive approach for understanding its value to public relations. Originality/value There has been a limited application of transmedia storytelling to public relations. This paper synthesizes transmedia storytelling with narrative transportation theory to develop a theory-driven, new approach for public relations thinking. The TNT approach is a unique fusion of ideas that can bring an innovative approach to the practice of public relations that captures four emerging trends that are shaping the practice.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 1

author list (cited authors)

  • Coombs, W. T., & Holladay, S. J.

citation count

  • 21

complete list of authors

  • Coombs, W Timothy||Holladay, Sherry J

publication date

  • October 2018