PR in the new normal: Effective public relations is the need of the hour

The world today is facing an unexpected pandemic. Today, when everyone is finding one way or the other to cope up with this crisis situation, a good and planned Public Relations (PR) approach is definitely the need of the hour for businesses and organizations.

COVID-19 has brought many challenges for us. For effective communication, we as PR professionals need to adapt – thereby helping open newer avenues for fresh communication ideas. In fact, now when most people are at home and exposed to different mediums, a well-packaged communication will grab more eyeballs. Hence, a communication agency needs to look for new, innovative and properly planned communication ideas.

A PR agency needs to weave new and interesting story ideas so that it breaks the clutter and draws maximum eyeballs of both the target public and the journalists at the same time. Journalists today are overloaded with COVID-related stories and are in search of other stories parallelly. The ideation process needs to consider the vision and mission of the clients along with keeping the message meaningful during this pandemic situation.

For example, a travel and tourism company cannot focus on their core travel business and sell tour package stories any more – at least till the people adjust to the new normal. Coming up with a do’s and don’ts guide for short business travelers; can both be informational and may also give some media footprints.

It must be remembered that many practices which we have acquired these days will be carried forward as our daily lifestyle. A good PR agency can take note of this point and plan their client’s communication strategy likewise.

As people adjust to the new normal and businesses restart, PR being a reasonable investment as compared to other forms of marketing, will enjoy more work in the coming days. The industry thus needs fresh ideas – that are sensitive to the situation and are also effective.

Amid all the negativity because of the pandemic, people now want to hear positive stories. Brand building requires a positive vibe in the communication strategy and thus, this is a good time for the brands to express themselves. But, it should be kept in mind that the story should be authentic. We must remember that we are at a state of PHYSICAL DISTANCING which has given rise to SOCIAL-MEDIA NEARING.

Moreover, the communication strategy should be able to be expressed through a planned campaign rather than being designed for one-time consumption. Regularity is very essential. Single communication/announcement will become stale quickly as audiences have ample time these days. Such an announcement will not break the clutter and will be lost in the noise. Hence, a PR agency should be able to adapt their communication plan according to the situation and churn out story ideas regularly at quick intervals. The content need not be long, but it has to be interesting. The consumption of videos has increased many folds and hence it should be used as a medium. Digital press conferences are a new trend these days.

In short, a PR agency needs to come up with smart communication plans in which the content should be motivating, educating and entertaining, besides providing the core message of the client.

Vikash Singh
About Vikash Singh

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Vikash Singh is Managing Director at Life’s Purple PR and Reputation Management consultancy based in Guwahati. He can be reached through [email protected]