This week in PR (23 October)

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.

@lizmatthewspr MOVEMBER CAST OF 2020 by @gregwilliamsphotography 🙏🏼 glam @sarahexley1 🤩
@lizmatthewspr MOVEMBER CAST OF 2020 by @gregwilliamsphotography 🙏🏼 glam @sarahexley1 🤩

News in brief

  • CIPR election: Rachel Roberts is president-elect of the CIPR. 865 eligible members voted (a turnout of 11.6%) and Rachel Roberts gained 57% to Peter Holt’s 43%. 
  • Nominations for election to the PRCA’s PR and Communications Council are now open.
  • Among the winners in this week’s #PRCADigital awards are Drew Benvie of Battenhall ‘Outstanding Contribution Award’ and Scott Guthrie Digital Journalist/Blogger of the Year.


Please check our PR Calendar and send us links to your events.

Covid-19 and comms

  • Rachel Royall: CIPR Health A Year in Review 2020 (19 October)
    ‘Throughout the year I have been astounded by the excellence in professional practice that I have observed, and I’ve been proud to be part of the healthcare comms community.’
  • Arun Sudhaman: How Corporate Affairs Became Fashionable Again (19 October)
    ‘Consumer marketing will, no doubt, be back — but 2020 has thrown up yet another surprising trend: corporate PR is fashionable again.’

Professional associations

Consulting, teams and careers

  • Stephen Waddington: Class of 2020 UK PR agency entrepreneurs on growth footing (20 October)
    ‘Creating an agency culture from a standing start is difficult enough but even more so when it’s not possible to work together in person.’
  • Joanna Randall: A decade in business (16 October)
    ‘In my early career PR was still considered a nice to have; it’s refreshing now to see how comms has really come into its own with the digital evolution.’

Wellbeing, gender and diversity

  • Louise Chandler: Race is everybody’s business (20 October)
    ‘As a black British woman of Caribbean descent who has been on this earth for almost 40 years- this year feels different for a lot of reasons when it comes to talking about Race.’

Public and third sectors

  • Kerry Sheehan: Pushing the frontiers in communication ethics (21 October)
    ‘My colleagues at the Government Communication Service are trusted advisors not only on communication, but about the purpose and values of our organisations. As we transform and look to utilise AI, there is a huge opportunity for us. Ethical and reputational guardianship should be at the heart of how our organisations approach and implement AI.’
  • Laura Skaife-Knight: From Comms Officer to Deputy CEO – one year on  (18 October)
    ‘My portfolio as Deputy CEO at QEH is varied and arguably unusual, and includes strategy, digital, transformation and improvement, culture, communications and external relations, staff engagement, fundraising and Governors and Membership, as well as deputising for the CEO.’

Politics, public affairs and public sphere

  • Stuart Thomson: Football’s public affairs own goal (19 October)
    ‘While appreciating that the report was leaked, what did the main players get wrong as far as their public affairs is concerned?’

Campaigns and creativity

  • Mark Borkowski: Latest Thames Stunt shows that PR is floating down the toilet  (22 October)
    ‘Floating things down the Thames was fun 30 years ago, but for Amazon – one of the most belligerently successful and COVID-proof companies in the world, with near infinite resources- to be reduced to floating a giant Borat down the Thames to promote his long-awaited sequel, symbolises an industry with no grip on its future, floundering for ideas and purpose.’

Brands, storytelling, and influence

  • Orlagh Shanks: How to Go Viral, the Ocean Spray Way (21 October)
    ‘A soft drink that sits on the shelf in Tesco and has no real pull for me or the average Joe has been selling out all over the world. Why?’

Measurement and evaluation

  • Gini Dietrich: The PESO Model: How to Measure Your Efforts (22 October)
    ‘In a world full of data both to help us make decisions and measure our efforts to real goals, we have to step outside of our comfort zones and start reporting on the things that matter, not made up metrics.’

Internal communication

  • Gemma Storey: Supporting continued learning and development (22 October)
    ‘Continual learning is vital for developing a continually improving workforce, but it’s important to do as much as you can to personalise this learning if you want people to develop to their fullest potential.’
  • Liam FitzPatrick: Time & tech wait for no one but some things remain constant (19 October)
    ‘Whatever we want people to do, it should be rooted in the needs of the business or organisation. Party organisers and entertainers do things because they are fun, professionals do things because it helps deliver a strategy or plan. If we can’t show the linkage back to the needs of the business then we are probably not adding any real value.’
  • Martin Flegg: The inspiration game (18 October)
    ‘The thing is, however important or unimportant we might be, we need more structure in how people get into internal communication so that they have a better introduction to the industry and are encouraged to think about doing some structured study and possibly joining a relevant professional body a bit earlier in their career.’
  • Katie Macaulay with Frank Wolf: Navigating the digital landscape [podcast] (no date)
    ‘The more platforms you have, your goal should be to have a clear internal brand. One of the big things brands do is reduce complexity in our decision making. Employees need to know that the news is official and trustworthy.’

Technology, media and digital

  • Katy Howell: Stealing social media ideas is a very good strategy (no date)
    ‘Mark Twain said that there’s no such thing as an original idea. And over the years working in marketing, I tend to agree. Most ideas are a collaboration of many ideas, a germ of a concept exploded out with different angles or viewed through different lenses.’

#prstudent #bestPRblogs

  • Alice Wilmot (Solent): McDonald’s and Breaches of Ethics Regulations (20 October)
    ‘It came out later McDonald’s had set their media owner JCDecaux to place these posters within 200 metres of any school and therefore were responsible for these posters.’
  • Tara Hamill (Ulster): Was the BPerfect Megastore opening a PR disaster? (20 October)
    ‘The BPerfect launch is the perfect example of how something so exciting and ground-breaking for a brand can very quickly be torn to shreds by the media in the space of 24 hours.’
  • Ciara Hughes (Ulster): Guinness – king of marketing (19 October)
    ‘How did a beer become so globalised to the extent that it is arguably an Irish icon? The very key to its success is that Guinness are creating marketing activity that has global synergies.’
  • Charlotte Price (Sunderland): Top tips for PR students (17 October)
    ‘Create a blog, create a Twitter account (if you don’t already have one), take part in the weekly competition for the best student PR blogger with PR Place on Twitter and get interacting with people in the industry.’