This week in PR (28 April)

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.

It happened this week

Misinformation, disinformation and polarisation

  • Magda Insuratelu: Preying on vulnerabilities: Why vaccines are so prone to misinformation (26 April)
    ‘Misinformation appeals to our primal fears of losing life and liberty, rather than appealing to our logic or intellects. The COVID vaccination, for instance, fell into both of these categories: health was supposedly threatened if you were to take the vaccine, and liberty was threatened if you didn’t.’

Purpose, climate and ESG

  • Imogen O’Rorke: Fashion and ESG: Time to put the S back centre-stage? (27 April)
    ‘This week is Fashion Revolution Week and it’s a particularly poignant one: it’s been ten years since the Rana Plaza building collapsed on 24th April 2013 in Dhaka, Bangladesh, killing over 1,138 and injuring a further 2,500 people who were working there in sweatshops for fast fashion brands.’

Consulting, skills and careers

  • Richard Millington: Thriving In The Tide Pools (23 April)
    ‘Organisations are incredibly risk-averse to new technologies. Hosted communities have been around for almost twenty years and we still encounter plenty of organisations who consider the idea too risky to implement in their organisation. Organisations aren’t going to leap aboard the new thing. Often they’re struggling to maintain and improve the current thing.’
  • Stephen Waddington: Notes on the UK public relations agency market (26 April)
    The agency market has switched from being relatively buoyant at the end of Q3 2022 to a slowdown.’
  • Ben Smith: The return of the publicist: Rich Dawes, managing director of DawBell on the PRmoment Podcast (21 April)
    ‘I think people need people, and the publicist has a more personal relationship with their client. You need to understand how that person ticks, how they articulate, and how you can improve their articulation.’
  • Calm Edged Rebels: How to maintain motivation [podcast] (21 April)
    ‘If you don’t have goals, or any intention behind those goals, then it can be really difficult to be motivated.’
  • Maja Pawinska Sims: Headliners: Faeth Birch (21 April)
    ‘The pandemic brought home to me how much I thrive on the buzz I get from working in teams in person. Working from home is effective and convenient but there is no substitute for being together – with clients and with colleagues doing great work.’

Public and third sectors

  • Emma Pocock: Dear resident, your council tax bill is going up (23 April)
    “Dear resident, your council tax bill is going up and before you ask: no, you may not personally see anything extra for your money and yes, we know things are already tight thanks to the rising cost of living.” Not really the easiest message to have to land, is it?’

Politics, public affairs and public sphere

  • Sara Price: The Gambling White Paper finally sees the light of day (27 April)
    ‘After four delays, six gambling Ministers, three Culture Secretaries and three Prime Ministers, the long awaited Gambling White Paper was finally published today.’
  • Robyn Evans: Taking back control: the ones to watch (27 April)
    ‘At this year’s local elections some 230 councils are being contested, of which 83 are Conservative-run, 49 Labour, and 17 Liberal Democrat, while 80 of the councils are under no overall control (NOC).’
  • Joseph Stephens: Six months in: Has Sunak done enough to turn the tide? (25 April)
    ‘On the six-month anniversary of his appointment, Sunak will be keen to trumpet his achievements: the delivery of the Windsor Framework, the CPTPP, union pay agreements, and the Aukus nuclear submarine deal. These alone will not win him the next election, but they have helped subvert expectations of Sunak as the leader of a chronically divided party, trying desperately to shake a Truss hangover.’
  • Neville Hobson: Rishi Sunak connects on LinkedIn Live (24 April)
    We had scripted Q&A. Yet I think it wasn’t bad at all. Even if there was a huge sense of stage-managed marketing here, Sunak has the personality and the natural talent to at least give a good impression of authenticity.’

Brands, content, community and creativity



View this post on Instagram


A post shared by James Herring (@itsjamesherring)

  • Sian Gaskell: Champions of Content – Q&A with Rosella Dello loio: Head of Content at Enate  (24 April)
    ‘Study your target audience like they’re book characters. Learn about how they spend their time, what keeps them up at night, and what they like to do. Identify the types of language they tend to use and the challenges they face, which you can shine a spotlight on through your content. If you can build a good understanding of that audience, you’ll make your content stronger.’

Crisis, risk and reputation

  • Paul MacKenzie-Cummins: Can the CBI survive latest reputational scandal? (25 April)
    ‘Reputations can be repaired and restored, and it is possible for the CBI to remain intact and continue to support the business community. But its role will likely be that of a bit-part player.’
  • Amanda Coleman: Can you hear me? (24 April)
    In the aftermath of the first test of a UK emergency alert system there is clearly a lot of work that needs to be done.’
  • Will Harvey: How to repair a damaged reputation (24 April)
    Research into reputation distinguishes between character reputation and capability reputation. Both focus on past ethical conduct and performance.’

Internal communication

  • Charlotte Stoel: Employee advocacy: The secret to creating authentic communication (27 April)
    ‘A company’s reputation is shaped by perceptions of others – that includes your workforce, and their voices can have huge power in enabling success. When employees become advocates, they act as a reliable source of truth. But like everything, if it’s not authentic, you’ll get found out and it will backfire.’
  • Jo Twiselton: Breaking through the noise: communicating a message that stands out (26 April)
    ‘Always be open to feedback, especially if you’re communicating with a new audience. It’s important to know what works and what doesn’t so that you can improve your approach in the future. And don’t be afraid to ask for feedback from anyone – whether it’s school children or leadership teams.’
  • Adeeba Hussain: Strong foundations equal effective measurement (26 April)
    ‘There are no hard rules about internal communication measurement. However, I will share what I consider the best practice to help you measure the why, what, how, where, and when.’
  • Tracy Smeathers: Could Employee Experience be your next career move? (25 April)
    ‘According to the 2023 US LinkedIn research report, ‘Jobs on the Rise’, employee experience is one of the top five growth roles in the USA. ‘

Media, digital and technology

  • Sophie Moody-Stuart: Is the clock ticking down for TikTok in UK political messaging? (27 April)
    ‘Like all social media platforms, TikTok collects vast amounts of user data, including location information, browsing history and behavioural patterns.’
  • Matthew Ford: Can governments keep us safe from AI? (27 April)
    ‘There has been some unease about the rapidity of AI development, most notably from tech entrepreneur Elon Musk. Musk has warned that AI could pose an existential threat to humanity and has called for greater regulation of AI technologies, even calling for a six month pause in its development.’
  • MHP Group: Winners of the 30 To Watch: Journalism Awards, 2023 (26 April)
    The event gets bigger each year. This time we received more than 300 entries from the Isle of Wight to Aberdeen and as far afield as the United States and Australia.’
  • Rich Leigh: We’ve reached the end in the race to the bottom for digital PR (25 April)
    ‘Clients aplenty saw PR as a quick and affordable way to earn much-needed links from relevant and high authority domains – read: media titles. And it is… Well, I honestly believe we’ve reached the end in the race to the bottom of a particular kind of link building.’
  • David Olajide: How Generative AI is transforming the PR industry (24 April)
    The [Goldman Sachs] report also predicts that two-thirds of jobs in the United States and Europe “are exposed to some degree of AI automation,” and approximately a quarter of all jobs could be performed entirely by AI.

Academic, education and training

#prstudent #CreatorAwards23

  • Natasha Darrah (Leeds Beckett): Summer 2023: Looking a million bucks without the bucks (24 April)
    Build your own style by creating mood boards or experimenting with your favourite existing pieces and from that, work collecting those all-important wardrobe staples which can then be re-styled and re-worn in a variety of ways.’