A misconstrued view of the PR industry can often prevent business leaders from recognising the breadth, depth and true effectiveness of communications. As a result, many companies still continue underestimating the power of PR and subsequently miss out on the undeniable value that it brings to a brand and its longevity.
Though a disruptive year plagued with its own unique challenges, 2020 has taught us all some valuable lessons. The pandemic has reinforced the importance of specialised PR across the globe and has showcased how impactful communications, particularly during times of crisis, can become a lifeline.
Meaningful communications in a post COVID-19 world
As the nation continues to adjust and adapt, brands are acknowledging the changing environment and focusing their efforts on engaging in meaningful dialogue with consumers, rather than centering campaigns around overt selling.
This approach has been fundamental in influencing positive public opinion. Without doing so, companies would have faced the very real risk of losing customers. In fact, a recent report showed that 94 per cent of UK shoppers would walk away from brands if they didn’t agree with their response to COVID-19.
With such high stakes, businesses have started to witness firsthand what impact PR can have and the critical role that communications plays. While advertising campaigns were put on pause during the most part of 2020, many brands instead invested in generating new virus-related content and messaging.
As opposed to being assigned a ‘supporting role’, Public Relations was finally given center stage within marketing strategies.
Using PR to lead the way
Between the pandemic, protests, politics and the US presidential election, 2020 was a year of chaotic headlines and heartbreaking articles. Due to this, an appetite for ‘good news’ grew amongst media channels.
Reporters were constantly searching for up lifting articles to share with their readers. Brands that managed to offer a positive and genuine story, were able to secure media coverage and in turn win the trust of their consumers at a time when it was desperately needed.
Prior to the pandemic (perhaps even now), Public Relations and its significance seemed to have been generally misunderstood.
During my career, I have witnessed a myriad of myths and misconceptions about my professional field. The most absurd being that it is no longer relevant. Last year not only proved this to be completely false, but it has done the opposite and further reinforced the power of PR.
Although the industry at its core is based on traditional principles, it has continued to evolve with the times. PR is so much more than press releases. It is a much broader discipline, encompassing everything from social media to digital marketing and all in between. No longer can it be undervalued or underestimated, it is a toolkit to reach audiences and maximise success. Businesses that don’t recognise that will invariably lose out to competitors that do.
If you would like to experience the benefits of PR first-hand, get in touch with our team here. Alternatively, give us a call on 01924 862477 – we’d love to hear from you!