What matters… in black and white

What matters... in black and white
Jun 15 2020

Tweeting about serious issues like racism is easy. Creating content that positions a brand as ethical is also a (socially distanced) walk in the park. But making a real difference – the sort of difference that influences people’s day-to-day lives – is much harder. In the light of the George Floyd protests, it will be interesting to see whether or not brands follow up their social media excitement with real action. Read more…

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Communication today matters more than ever

COVID19 Business Continuity
Mar 19 2020

The natural temptation for many firms in a time of market crisis will be to batten down the hatches and wait for the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic to fade. The problem with this approach is that it is unclear how long the disruption will last and many firms will not have the resources or staying power to survive it. More importantly, if you lock down your activities – and strip out costs – it will be extremely difficult to restart the engine and generate momentum in the future. Read more…

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Top Tips for Winning Awards that Matter

Awards Strategy
Feb 3 2020

While PR firms like collecting awards on behalf of their clients, the industry has become saturated. To use an expression suited for the time of year, the golden goose of media companies is being killed off. So what should you look out for – and how do you separate the awards worth winning from those that are there simply ‘pay-for-play’? Read more…

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The Evolution of Communications

Sep 17 2019

In the early-1980s, I signed the Official Secrets Act and was shown into a room with a dozen middle-aged men and a secretary. My job was no more than a gopher but it gave me my first insight into how communication was about to change. For months we would secretly test the new cordless telephones, and I would take taxis back and forth to the laboratory to deliver blueprints and collect prototypes (too secret to be delivered by London taxi). In the end, the UK lost out to the US in the telecoms race and British Telecom quickly became the first true global privatisation under Margaret Thatcher, sparking a wave of government asset sell-offs whose legacy continues today. Read more…

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The “Final Four” Tips for Business PR

Apr 8 2019

Whether you’re a lifelong college basketball fan or just looking to test your luck with some friendly office competition, March Madness is an exciting change-up to your daily routine. We’ve seen some unexpected upsets this year heading into the ‘Final Four,’ and I can’t help but think about how each team’s journey to reach this point reflects startups rise to the top within their industries.

While we’re in the spirit of the game, here’s a look at how PR can help businesses go from an unknown to a thriving team to reckon with in the media. Read more…

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A blast from the past: Nostalgia marketing is taking us back to the future

Jan 30 2019

My wife is not a fan of washing up, but for a few short weeks, she simply couldn’t resist standing at the kitchen sink, pulling on the Marigolds and plunging her hands into the hot bubbly water. Then, Procter & Gamble stopped producing its limited edition “vintage” bottle of Fairy Liquid – a white cylinder with green and red branding – and sadly, normal service resumed.

On the local high street, a new supermarket opened for business. With a new but very old logo. Intriguingly, after a root and review of its branding, the Co-operative Group has returned to the logo that adorned its stores half a century ago. Graphically, it’s fantastic – a blend of funky typography and minimalism – but it also elicits an emotional response. I almost felt like a boy again, off to buy some R White’s lemonade and a bag of Golden Wonder salt ‘n’ vinegar crisps.

Nostalgia is a powerful marketing tool. It can encourage us all to remember our rose-tinted pasts and to bathe in the warm glow of the good old days when the world was simpler and the sun always shone. It creates an emotional connection between brand and consumer. And it’s beguilingly effective. A simple change in a product’s packaging can turn a daily chore like washing up – into a moment of pleasure. It can make supermarket shopping feel like a trip down memory lane. Read more…

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Brand activism – is it the future?

Nov 27 2018

How political should a company or brand be in today’s post-truth world? After backing American footballer Colin Kaepernick, who famously knelt during the national anthem before a game as a protest against racial injustice, Nike has no doubt. “Believe in something,” demands the latest version of its long-running ‘Just Do It’ campaign. “Even if it means sacrificing everything.” Read more…

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What a 96-year Old Taught Us About Communication

Sep 20 2018

Denis Norden, left, and Frank Muir in their office in the 1950s writing scripts for the radio show Take It from Here. Photograph: Popperfoto/Getty Images

Denis Norden, who died on September 19, 2018, was one of the UK’s most beloved comedic writers and broadcasters. He also lived a long and happy life that encompassed the ‘golden years’ of British broadcasting. One of his great skills was his ability to connect with his audience, which is where we can all start to pay attention.

Many efforts at communication today rely on sending out large amounts of information and hoping some of it will stick. Far less time is spent trying to actually engage – or empathise with – the audience. Most PR agencies will be guilty of this at one time or another, usually under the guise of ‘thought leadership’, a label that many reporters despise.

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Specialist PR firms make more sense

Sep 20 2018

If you’re thinking about hiring a public relations agency, choose carefully. Hiring a global firm with thousands of employees can be enticing, but know what you’ll be paying for. With a specialist PR agency, your money primarily goes towards the talent that supports you; not on a legacy operating model.

Specialist PR firms are ideally suited to this modern world of communications. Here are a few reasons why.

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Tools for Success in Financial Services & Fintech PR

Sep 13 2018

Today’s financial markets operate at lightning speeds and are constantly monitored by regulators and compliance organizations to ensure there is a level playing field for all participants. Participants must ensure their operations are organized and buttoned-up, particularly their messaging and their brand image. With that in mind, managing public relations for firms in this sector – whether asset managers, fintech vendors, or tier-one banks – is no small task and requires a specific set of expertise, tools and strategies. Here are five tips that will help you successfully manage your client’s expectations and become a more well-rounded communications professional.  

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