This week in PR (6 May)

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

  • PR Week has published its ranking of the top 150 UK PR consultancies. Brunswick tops the ranking with 2021 revenue of £81m; the largest team is second-placed Weber Shandwick with 420 UK staff; and the biggest income per employee is twelfth-placed Finsbury Glover Hering at £296,000 per head.



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  • IPRA: IPRA celebrates World Press Freedom Day 2022 (3 May)
    ‘In 1991 former IPRA president Alain Madoux oversaw UNESCO public relations. In that capacity, he organized in May 1991, in Windhoek, Namibia, a seminar on Promoting an independent and pluralistic African press. From that meeting came the Windhoek Declaration, on the importance of a free press in Africa… [This was a first step towards] the decision by the UN General Assembly, in December 1993, to proclaim 3 May World Press Freedom Day.’

Purpose and ESG

  • Alan Tovey and Simon Hockridge: AGM season – open season on pay? (no date)
    ‘With an ever-growing focus on ESG, all corners of the investment community are becoming more outspoken on [the issue of executive pay]; institutions, activists, and campaign groups are all gaining confidence in taking a firmer stance.’
  • Sophie Morello: Purpose on Payday (29 April)
    ‘Rather than waiting for guidance from the [UK Transition Plan Taskforce], businesses large and small need to start assessing their environmental impact now to ease the burden of the reporting task later on, and get a grasp of any potential reputational risks that go hand in hand with not making and adhering to meaningful, science-based targets.’

Consulting, teams and careers

  • Son Pham: The Nomad S3E1 – Rebecca Sangster-Kelly (5 May)
    ‘When I work with my clients, I challenge them, “but why are we doing this?” and I expect an answer. But if you don’t have that dynamic in your team, or with your client, you’re not going to feel comfortable making those statements or asking those questions.’
  • Calm Edged Rebels: How to create habits that help you thrive [podcast] (29 April)
    ‘I’ve now come to realise that procrastination is not a bad thing if it allows time for reflection, but you mustn’t let it run away with your day.’

Public and third sectors

Politics, public affairs and public sphere 

  • Mark Glover: 1997: Things got better (3 May)
    ‘I was lucky enough to be in Downing Street when Tony, Cherie and family arrived and we cheered ourselves silly before retiring to that most political of pubs, the Marquis of Granby, for a well-earned drink with Tom Watson and many, many others.’

Brands, content, influence and creativity

  • Ciara McCrory: Tweet, Cancel, Repeat (5 May)
    ‘While the rules around online indiscretions are blurry, what’s clear is that cancel culture is in no way cancelled.’
  • Emma Drake: Message mixups: do you know who’s buying or benefitting? [podcast] (5 May)
    ‘Most companies only have a few key messages – and they’re all they need. A key message is the thing you want customers to take away or do once they’ve read it.’
  • Natalie DiBona: How to Consume Content Without Letting it Consume You (3 May)
    ‘Keeping up with constant news on social leaves us mentally drained and exhausted, and there is overwhelming pressure to stay on top of things. News alert: it’s not humanly possible.’

Risk, crisis and reputation

Internal communication

  • Helen Trueman: Navigating the ‘return to work’ conundrum (5 May)
    ‘We had already proved that ‘work’ was not defined by a physical location and the findings of a colleague survey on what a return to campus might look like was split down the middle, with 48% in favour of returning, while 52% preferred to remain at home. It became clear that a hybrid model would be the way forward.’
  • Dan Holden: How to keep a mental health conversation going (4 May)
    ‘Wellbeing is a theme that should be featured throughout your forward planner but remember, everyone has a part to play. I’m saddened and have been there myself when it’s left to the comms team to develop the wellbeing plan for the year.’
  • Jenni Field: Creative internal communication campaigns – why we need to have more fun! (4 May)
    ‘I’ve had a look back over my career to remember the creative internal communication campaigns I ran and what we did that was fun. Here are some examples to spark some memories and ideas.’

Media, digital and technology

  • Dan Slee: NEWS LIST: Here’s how big local news brands in the UK now are online (5 May)
    ‘Leading the pack on 38.7 million is the BBC. But what’s striking is the number of local titles and very often Reach titles led by Manchester Evening News 17.5 million in 10th, and Birmingham Live 11.1 million on 19th and Liverpool Echo 10.8 million 20th.’
  • Darryl Sparey: NFT Marketing – The unexamined life isn’t worth living (no date)
    ‘Discord is crucial to the success of an NFT project. From working on the project, I’ve realised that it’s a vital way of keeping the audience who may have signed up to join your allow list (also called “whitelist”) between signing up and the mint date – when they can buy the NFTs.’
  • Paul Sutton with Farhad Kooduroth: Facebook Advertising: The End is Nigh [podcast]
    ‘Over the past six to nine months there’s been more and more talk that Facebook advertising just doesn’t work anymore. The ability to track conversions on iOS devices has been lost.’
  • Neville Hobson: Escape planning in case Elon Musk’s Twitter acquisition succeeds (1 May)
    ‘To be clear, I don’t intend to abandon Twitter – unless the worst fears about moderation and extremist political groups and behaviours suddenly erupt and look like becoming the norm. What I am doing, though, is putting in place a plan so that if I feel Twitter no longer is a place I want to be or be part of, I can transition away completely and quite speedily.’

Academic and education

  • Stephen Waddington: Seven ideologies of public relations (3 May)
    ‘The tension between an organisation and its publics is reflected throughout public relations theory and broadly different approaches. Seven ideologies are set out below.’

#prstudent #CreatorAwards22

As we approach the end of the academic year, it’s time to review the numbers from #prstudent #CreatorAwards22 – and announce the shortlist.

This academic year we have featured 145 posts from 23 students at 12 UK colleges and universities. Here’s the league table of the top ranked universities in academic year 2021-22:

University Students featured Appearances
Solent 4 69
LCC / UAL 1 26
Leeds Beckett 8 23
Liverpool John Moores 1 11


Students from Cardiff, Chester, Greenwich, Harlow College, Leicester, Salford, Sheffield Hallam and Southampton also featured.

Three individuals stand out from the pack, and they’re our shortlisted students up for #CreatorAwards22.

Student (channel) University (level) Appearances
Jasmine Denike (TikTok) LCC / UAL (MA) 26
Bethany Gough (Wix blog) Solent (BA) 26
Elena Niculescu (WordPress blog) Solent (BA) 22


We’ll be sending out invitations to an online event to celebrate their achievements and the support of their lecturers, to be held in June.

This is our final week and the three shortlisted students are still featured showing that while content creation may be technically easy, sustaining it for a period of time remains a substantial challenge. #CreatorAwards22 is a marathon not a sprint and I warmly congratulate those who’ve reached the finishing line.


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