One of the most exciting factors about Public Relations is that we are involved in an industry that is constantly changing. While this makes for stimulating work, if you don’t evolve your tactics and PR strategy along with the industry, your PR campaign will be left on the sidelines. Here are a few PR trends we are expecting and already starting to execute today.
Amplifying owned media
One of the largest emerging public relations trends for 2019 will be amplifying owned media and other content to gain views. With earned media becoming harder and harder to obtain due to shrinking newsrooms, taking control of your message and generating your own content is a guaranteed way to broadcast your message to your target audience. While earned media is still an important strategy to hit a wide audience, an owned media content strategy then amplified with a paid budget can help nudge that content into getting more views. You can also get more specific with who sees that message with social media. For example, create a video for social media and boost the post on Facebook. It’s become harder to engage new audiences on social media unless it is with an ad or some type of paid component to strengthen your reach. Even as little as $25 can help the video get more impressions.
Creating your own news
To add to the above point of earned media becoming more challenging to obtain, publicists should look to create news for their clients. By getting involved in current discussions within the news cycle, essentially your brand gets its message across by displaying its importance to the public. Write a blog, a contributed article or simply share an article on social media. Commenting on or piggybacking off current news items can help show your relevancy to the situation from your perspective.
Another trend we are seeing more and more of is the rise of utilizing social media influencers, specifically the use of the micro-influencer. Depending on your client’s goals, working with an influencer with a following around 10K or less on Instagram could lead to the creation of authentic content that speaks directly to their audience. While it may seem appealing to work with someone who has millions of followers, these influencers are often very expensive, hard to engage and most likely don’t have the targeted audience you need. With a micro-influencer you typically receive stronger engagement which is the most important factor when your brand chooses to work with this group. And why not amplify that influencer content? For example, if an influencer creates a video with your brand, consider promoting it through YouTube ads to increase views.
PR has always been about storytelling. We use the ability to tell insightful and engaging stories to shape a brand’s image. But with the developments of social media and other communications advancements, people are spending more time browsing online than actually reading. So when it comes to storytelling, you have to find a way to optimize attention and get your point across with fewer words. Visual content is now king which can come in the form of anything from infographics to sharable videos. When it comes to social media, your storytelling efforts need to continue and remain consistent here in order to be effective. Even when partnering with influencers, work with them on key messaging so when they tell your brand’s story to their extended audience, it mimics the voice and messaging of your brand.
Public relations, although it continues to evolve, is an industry that is here to stay. When brands, thought leaders and companies are looking to reach a broader audience, increase market share and rise above their competition, it will require the execution of current trends to stay ahead of this ever-changing landscape.