This week in PR (30 July)

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.

Morning walk #derwentwater #WednesdayMotivation #StormHour #Cumbria #lakedistrict via @debsharratt on Twitter
Morning walk #derwentwater #WednesdayMotivation #StormHour #Cumbria #lakedistrict via @debsharratt on Twitter

It happened this week


  • Stephen Waddington: CIPR PR in a Pandemic report tells a complex story (29 July)
    ‘The study replaces the CIPR’s annual State of the Profession survey and reports on the experience of more than 1,000 practitioners during the pandemic.’
  • Jon Gerlis: Reasons for PR to be cheerful, in three parts (28 July)
    ‘The research shows that 18 months into a global pandemic and our influence, reputation and reach has found its way into new areas of our organisations and with great intensity.’

Academic and education

ESG, corporate and financial

  • Luke Cross: Committing to ESG means striking a balance between numbers and narrative (29 July)
    ‘Primarily, ESG is driven by a desire (or need) to communicate more holistically with investors and lenders. But holding yourself to account on ESG commitments has broader value and potential as a form of communication with staff, customers, peers and partners.’
  • Angus Maitland: Which values do we value? Companies want to ‘give back’ but they need to walk the walk (23 July)
    ‘A more universal sense of concern about people and community, beyond a company’s immediate stakeholders, should be applauded. Large listed corporations have long recognised that their “license to operate” extends far beyond the immediate interests of shareholders, customers and employees, and today encompasses sustainability, social responsibility and governance.’

Consulting, teams and careers

    • Drew Benvie: Here we are in the new normal: flexible working (29 July)
      ‘For me, perfecting the new normal has been a 10-year learning process where many twists and turns have fine tuned my understanding and approach to what totally flexible working really means, what matters to people, and what delivers benefit to a business.’
    • Brendon Craigie: Is Your Office Ripping You Off? (29 July)
      ‘According to our third annual Cost of a Commute study which we’ve launched today not commuting has provided the average salaried London commuter in my field of public relations with the equivalent of a champagne popping 13.9% pay rise.’
    • Rebecca Roberts and Harriet Small: Asking for Help at Work and Wellness PR Guru Naomi White [podcast] (29 July)
      ‘It was a natural transition for me to progress from fashion to health and wellness PR. I would say there’s more satisfaction working with health and wellness brands; with fashion, it can be a fairly fickle industry.’
    • Danny Rogers: PR bosses are now facing a looming staff crisis (26 July)
      ‘David Fraser, the founder of the Ready10 agency, told PRWeek last week: “At the time of writing, a quarter of the agency has tested positive for COVID-19 in the past fortnight – all separately and independently from one another – and approaching half of us have been required to self-isolate. “This is, without doubt, the hardest we have been hit in the pandemic so far. Thankfully, it looks like everyone should make a full recovery.”

Public and third sectors

Politics, public affairs and public sphere

  • Paddy Kent: Wake up and smell the floodwater (29 July)
    ‘The Environment Agency will spend £5.2bn on reducing flooding in England over the next six years to 2027.’
  • Christine Quigley: Who pays? The electoral politics of social care reform (27 July)
    ‘Social care in the UK has been in crisis under successive Governments of all political stripes, with a funding model inadequate to support the current and future needs of an ageing population.’
  • Alice Wilkinson: Is the staycation here to stay? (27 July)
    ‘The global shut-down has given us a rare opportunity to reset, to adjust our behaviours and attitudes to foreign travel.’
  • Stuart Thomson: Government Overdrive and the Impact on Public Affairs (26 July)
    ‘The Summer can be busier than ever in public affairs. Parliament may not be sitting but there is more going on. Why is that the case and what are the risks you need to be aware of?’

Risk, crisis and reputation

  • Jennifer Sanchis: Communicate in a Crisis: The Guide for PR Pro Survival (27 July)
    ‘Hartley’s book couldn’t be more timely; offering analysis of the highly volatile, uncertain and complex environment in which crises emerge, as well as tips, anecdotes, case studies and strategies on how to deal with thorny situations.’

Campaigns, creativity and behaviour

Brands, storytelling, and influence

Planning, insight, measurement and evaluation 

  • Mark Weiner: The Public Relations Data Scientist (26 July)
    ‘All agree on the need for curiosity, critical thinking, and the ability to use technology. Data analytics is a given but there’s a requirement to understand and apply the data to uncover actionable insights.’

Internal communication

  • Mike Klein: Remote-first Internal Communication: Early Thoughts and a Call for Conversations (29 July)
    ‘I’m interested in going much deeper into this inquiry – I’m looking to have another ten conversations with people responsible for internal communication in “remote-first” organizations as defined above by the end of September.‘
  • Louise Nicolson: Belonging (no date)
    ‘This is not about fitting in. Belonging enhances identity and diversity. Kennedy and Jain-Link suggest we belong at work when we are seen for our distinct contributions; connected to our coworkers; supported in our daily work and career development; proud of our organisation’s values and purpose.’
  • Rachel Miller: Podcast: How to say no to stakeholders (25 July)
    ‘In my experience, internal communicators are nice people… More often than not, how that manifests itself is we become the ‘yes’ people and as a result our work becomes overloaded.’

Technology, media and digital

  • George Sinnot: Searchonomics: The link between stock price and search visibility (29 July)
    ‘A list of public companies across a range of industries was chosen for the study. I tracked their visibility index (using Sistrix) and stock price over 3.5 years. These figures were normalised (using logs) before calculating their correlation.’
  • Hollie Abbott: Think before you speak: a checklist for reactive comms (28 July)
    ‘In today’s fast-moving digital world, brands and companies want to do news hijacking and stunts as quickly as possible to ensure they’re getting into the conversation while the topic is hot. But when we’re working quickly, sometimes we can lose attention and forget the smaller details as a result.’
  • Sophie Shaw and Belle Lawrence: Serious Social – Episode 64: Succeed on TikTok with the IFers [podcast] (no date)
    ‘There are five main content areas that brands can focus on: Challenges are usually started by creators with large followings; they help with reach. Storytelling is start, middle and end – an actual story. Jumping on a trend helps with reach. Education videos are popular on TikTok and are watched in their entirety. Influencers allow brands to drive awareness.’
  • Amanda Coleman: 12 lessons from 12 years on Twitter (25 July)
    ‘I am not sure whether I will still be using social media in another 12 years but for the moment I am just enjoying the good things it brings.’