This week in PR (10 January)

About the author

Richard Bailey Hon FCIPR is editor of PR Academy's PR Place Insights. He teaches and assesses undergraduate, postgraduate and professional students.

Bridges, Newark, New Jersey @tonylangham
Bridges, Newark, New Jersey @tonylangham

News in brief

  • Weber Shandwick chief executive Rachel Friend is leaving the agency after nine years with the firm, and two in this role (via Holmes Report)
  • The PRCA has launched a consultation on its Public Affairs Code to ensure it remains the benchmark for ethical and transparent lobbying.’ (Via PRCA)
  • Pressing ahead with the rollout of the legislation – referred to as IR35 – to include the private sector will represent an unacceptable level of burden on the PR sector and will stifle enterprise.’ The CIPR is lobbying on behalf of freelance practitioners, as is the PRCA

Purpose and professionalism

  • Stuart Bruce: PR 2020 vision – AI, professional development, measurement, purpose (6 January)
    ‘The challenge for our PR 2020 vision and public relations for the Twenties is to build on these foundations and ensure more practitioners embrace the importance of professional training, qualifications and lifelong learning through continuous professional development.’
  • Natasha Hill: Happy New Decade (3 January)
    ‘We’ve had some pretty big challenges within the communications industry, with the term “Fake News” reaching its Trump Tower sized peak in 2016, quickly followed by the Cambridge Analytica scandal.’
  • Ben Lowndes: Focusing on what matters (and avoiding what doesn’t) in 2020 (3 January)
    ‘Although Twitter remains a good space to connect with people with shared interests, it’s not a place for balanced discussion.’

Consulting and careers

  • Rich Leigh: PR in a Car – Episode 4 – That Thing We Never Talk About [vlog[ (9 January)
    ‘We don’t talk much about client retention, despite the fact – especially on the agency side – it can be a thorny issue. There are loads of us, and at this time of year clients are thinking about their plans.’
  • Dom Burch: Be nice to people on the way up because you’ll meet them on the way down – Wilson Mizner (8 January)
    ‘Observe those around you. Anyone you admire, consider what is it about how they do what they do that makes it so impressive. And when you are impressed by someone, be sure to tell them. Don’t be shy talking to people in positions of power. Be curious. Be brave, share your ideas and thoughts. Your perspective is always valid.’
  • Nigel Sarbutts: IR35 and freelancers – what rule changes are coming and what do you need to do? (no date)
    ‘April this year sees the introduction of IR35 rules changes which potentially affect the income and tax position of thousands of freelancers with private sector clients.’
  • Phillipa Chikwedze with Matt Peacock: Let’s chat comms [podcast] (31 December)
    ‘The good choices I’ve made in career terms have all been about people, not brands, nor roles. What goes around comes around. Be nice to everybody.’

Public affairs

Crisis and reputation

Wellbeing, gender and diversity

  • Jude Tipper: Shame, resilience and mental health: my story (8 January)
    ‘I’m pretty tired of resilience and being expected to be the strong one, taking whatever crap gets thrown next. Tackling unkindness. Sucking it up. There are times I just want to stop the world and get off…then lie in a crumpled heap for a while, feeling all of the feelings.’
  • Dan Slee: The Diverse Days of Christmas #12 (5 January)
    ‘There is no data I’ve seen that looks at age range in PR yet I take an uneasy look around public sector comms teams and I see teams getting older and a lack of young people coming through.’

Campaigns and creativity

Brands, storytelling and influence

Measurement and evaluation

Internal communication

  • Elizabeth Bananuka: Pros We Love: Annique Simpson, Communications Manager, BT (6 January)
    ‘I love the challenge of coming up with communication solutions to solve business problems – it’s why I do what I do. My role at BT is more focused on employee engagement, which is great, as it allows me to apply psychology theory.’
  • Victoria Ford: The missing chapter in the change story (6 January)
    ‘There’s a danger that someone doing business change thinks they have comms nailed, when what they have actually done is identified a need for comms, and a comms person thinks they have business change covered when they are only addressing one part of it.’
  • Amanda Mogan-Wilson: Keeping brand values fresh, relevant & front of mind at Jardine Motors (6 January)
    ‘Now young people are coming into the organisation because they’ve seen the Jobswagger campaign on social media, they’re aware of the stuff that we’re doing, and they’re talking about it in their job interviews.’

Media and digital

  • Holly Pither: Crowdsourced PR, comms and social predictions for 2020 (9 January)
    ‘I have always felt that B2B marketers and PRs have set themselves apart from their fellow B2C professionals, and certainly up until a few years ago the nature of their work and how they talked to their audience was, in fairness, quite different. However, the last few years have brought B2B and B2C comms much closer together.’
  • Sarah Rice: Misinformation is everywhere – here’s how to do your due diligence (9 January)
    ‘Now, more than ever, it is our duty as citizens to take a step back and review and research where this information is coming from. Much better to share one important, accurate, relevant and well sourced (true) piece of content a week than risk in your 250 likes, 72 shares and 113 views a week including something that is, in fact, potentially dangerous lies.’
  • Dan Selinger: We all need to do a royally good job at digital PR (7 January)
    ‘Whereas digital PR was once the domain of quick gimmicks and clickbait, a more strategic approach is now needed.’

#prstudent #bestPRblogs

  • Abi Kitcher (Solent): The importance of social media in a crisis (9 January)
    ‘I thought I’d discuss the importance of social media in a crisis rather than the negatives because regardless of the crisis, social media can be seen as a way to genuinely communicate with your audience when the going gets tough.’
  • Hannah Chambers (Ulster): Are Influencers Moving Away From Instagram and Towards TikTok? What does this mean for brands? (9 January)
    ‘For someone who is basically obsessed with Instagram, I never thought I would say this, but I now spend more time on TikTok. Something I have noticed is as a 21 year old, I’m one of the oldest people on the platform.’
  • Niamh Murray (Ulster): What’s the Beef with Vegan Options? (8 January)
    ‘Well, unless you’ve been living under a rock (wouldn’t blame you, the world’s a scary place), you probably know that so far, 2020 has been a pretty big year for veganism. And it’s only been like a week.’
  • Millie Vincent (Solent): #MeToo: My Advice to Sexual Harassment Sufferers (4 December)
    ‘Personally, #MeToo represents finding your voice even in the most difficult of times and being brave by stepping up for what’s right. I’ve been wanting to write about my experience for a while, but I’ve found myself scared, anxious and intimidated… all the things I felt when suffering sexual harassment.’
  • Emma Rogers (Solent): New Year, Same Me (2 January)
    ‘2020 itself is a huge year for me… I GRADUATE! Three years of hard work is coming to a close and I get to start my career in PR. Job hunting is creeping up on me and I just hope for the most incredible opportunities this year. I also turn 21 so real adulthood is just around the corner.’