PR | Storicom

PR

The Power Of Communication To Drive Business

We're public relations specialists based in Auckland NZ

 

Media relations

Media relations is the active and personal building of relationships with journalists, commentators and influencers, to achieve objectives, by providing valuable information.  It involves sparking interest, securing an angle and being of value, with the aim of gaining mentions or coverage.

 

Issues and crisis management

An issues and crisis management plan guides you on how to communicate with stakeholders when the negative occurs.  Because you never know what will happen, it’s best to be prepared and practiced well ahead to limit any long term damage.

 

Government relations + public affairs

Keeping Government, Ministries and public officials informed about your business activities is important, especially in a country like New Zealand.  They are both stakeholders and influencers who want to stay in touch and informed, which can also support the objectives of your business.

 

Event management

Events have a lifecycle starting with pre-event blogs, news, PR, invitations, emails and social media, peaking with the event itself and concluding with thank yous, summaries and social media recaps - before the communication baton is passed to the next event.

 

 

Content Marketing

Content is now at the heart of your PR and communication in an unavoidable union - by creating, publishing and distributing it, you have control over engaging with people, building relationships, growing profile, developing awareness, answering questions, and growing leads and sales.

 

B2B communications

Business communication builds direct relationships between you as a business, and your target audiences, to grow awareness and trust, as well as develop leads and sales.  It helps you become your own media company, using online channels to influence your audiences.

 

Messaging and narrative

Confirming your message and narrative will define how your brand, product and services are talked about.  Your key messages are reasons to believe in your business - why are you needed, relevant and different - all contained in a concise and easily repeatable statement.

 

Media training

Facing the media can be nerve-wracking so media training will help you not only to answer journalist questions, but give you skills to control an interview to achieve objectives.  It teaches how reporters operate and provides skills and confidence to express your message no matter what you’re asked.

 

Jonathan Tudor  | Director

I was introduced once as: “here’s the person I was talking about who’s been in PR forever!”

Tongue in cheek, yes, but fairly accurate - let’s say more than 20 years and less than 30.

No grass has grown under my shoes, in that time.  I’ve worked with PR celebrities and the occasional magician, in the UK, Middle East and New Zealand, and for several world leading agencies.

I’ve served countless well-known brands and businesses, in an eclectic range of industries, worked as an independent consultant and established an agency with a difference, Storicom.  Throughout, my passion has been the importance of service, informing and being precise.

The renaissance currently underway for PR is its most significant evolution - communication has become an ever-present management tool to drive a business in the direction it wants to go.

I’m committed to helping people achieve this.

 

A selection of present and past public relations clients

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Public Relations in New Zealand

If a company is not in this space expressing its views and opinions, and providing news, it will miss out on the opportunity to develop important relationships with customers, and build subsequent trust. 

From the dominant reign of print journalism, to broadcast, and digital and social media, Public Relations has always played an important role helping organisations achieve their aims.  It has evolved as methods of communications have changed and like all other aspects of life it’s currently being disrupted, but the result of this is likely to be more relevance, not less.

PR | Storicom

There are many definitions for PR but one of the most common is from the Public Relations Society of America, echoed by its counterpart in New Zealand, PRINZPublic relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics.

A “public” in this case is the people an organisation needs to reach for different reasons whether they are consumers, other businesses or a community, Government officials, investors or a wide range of other stakeholders.  The beauty of this summary is it’s as accurate now as it’s always been – the only difference is the channels of communication have changed.

At the heart of PR is the desire of individuals and organisations for profile, while growing and protecting reputation, and fostering understanding and influence.  It also supports sales and business growth and is an essential part of the marketing mix.

Up until ten years ago PR played second fiddle to the more high profile, and costly, advertising.  But this is changing and the skills of PR professionals as natural storytellers and news generators are growing in importance as people spend more time online researching, gathering knowledge and developing understanding, before making a buying decision. 

What Public Relations Was And What It Is Becoming?

 

PR came to prominence in the 1930s and firmly established itself over the next three decades.  The profession focused on developing relationships between a company and its audiences, via the media.  It was fed by creativity to ensure the right stories were told to develop the best audience response and personal connections with journalists and other influencers were sacrosanct, which is still the case. 

The PR profession grew rapidly and began to encompass a vast array of different specialties focused on different specific tasks or audiences.  They include: media relations, issues and crisis management, consumer PR, product launches, events and experiential, reputation management, internal communications, investor relations, Government and public affairs, and corporate social responsibility.

Working with journalists was the principal way to communicate your message to the market.  It was the age of mass media and if a journalist reported your story it was seen as an endorsement.

PR value was considered higher than advertising value, as it involved third party reporting by a journalist as opposed to buying space and filling it with a company created message.

We all know media has changed, especially in countries like New Zealand where the traditional mainstream publications have been under enormous pressure in the last ten years.  Advertising revenue has declined, titles have disappeared and large media companies are having to change their model rapidly to stay viable.  It’s a rapidly changing space with a never ending story.  The media itself has become the news.

While this has occurred the PR profession has also had to evolve and is taking on new specialties including:

Influencer relations: these can be bloggers, analysts, existing customers, or anyone who could provide a viewpoint that will influence a future customer decision

Social media: an increasingly powerful opportunity to communicate stories, develop relationships and engage, while also a way of monitoring conversations and potential risk

Content is king: PR people are experts at balancing clear business messages with news or opinion – an obvious playing field for the profession

SEO: an important goal for PR through high quality, relevant, interesting and valuable content that can earn links from authoritative domains

Measurement: it’s been a long time coming but PR measurement is now possible using real data and metrics, such as page views, clicks, downloads, even bounce-rates.  The clunky and inaccurate Advertising value equivalents and column cms of coverage have been consigned to the bin!

PR and a 4th Communication Revolution

 

The amount of media relations undertaken by a PR consultant has declined gradually over the last 30 years from being about 80% of what one did to around 20% today – an opinion based on experience.  It will be different in other countries but while traditional media remains incredibly important, the reality is it’s competing with many other channels.

So how is the PR profession responding?

The result is it’s becoming infused across all aspects of communication whether online, in media or face-to-face, and it plays a growing supporting role in developing customers, relationships and markets.

Similar to the 4th Industrial Revolution or Industry 4.0, there’s an emerging 4th Communication Revolution, or Communication 4.0.  Here’s the connection - Industry 4.0 follows the three previous industrial revolutions: steam and mechanisation in the late 18th Century, electricity and mass production in the 19th, and computers and automation in the 20th Century.  This chronology has a similar pattern in communications, which has moved from the widespread newspaper driven media in the 19th Century, to mass media and broadcasting in the mid-20th Century, and era of computer and the Internet towards the end of that century, and now to the current personalised communication revolution.

As this occurs, PR is responding, but the essence of the profession hasn’t changed - communicating between a person or organisation to an audience.

Personal Relations | Storicom
Public Relations moves into the era of Personal Relations
If a business is talking to a mass audience or a single person the message it expresses in order to achieve a specific result is the same.  As a result, the process it follows should also remain similar.  The first step is to make sure the message is consistent by formulating it in a document such as a communication blueprint, a foundational structure that supports a business as it presents itself.

Next is to look at your definition of success: you might want to grow profile and reputation, the traditional PR aim, but you may also want to support your sales process, grow leads, creating understanding amongst customers about the solutions you offer to specific needs they have.

Next is to consider the best way to communicate and channels to use to achieve these goals, whether online, through the media or face-to-face.  Public relations’ role now is to provide a balancing support to all these channels with a consistent message, and not just those related to the traditional media.  For instance, networking is highly important, especially in a smaller market like New Zealand but the networking message needs to be consistent with those online and in the media.
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Businesses move into the era of being the media themselves
As the role of the media has changed, so has the role of each company to the point that now every company is a media company.

This means all businesses have an opportunity to develop their own media channels, write their own content and use it to fulfil their objectives – and PR’s is central to achieving this.

Content means: blogs, stories, points of view, research, white papers, advice, customer experiences, newsletters, PR, infographics, visual content such as video and photos, etc. It needs to be original, interesting, engaging, useful, mobile, multimedia and targeted at your audience and focused on achieving a specific objective.

The concept Every Company is a Media Company or EC=MC, explains content’s role.
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Where Does This Leave PR?

 

In a very good place - PR is now involved in every aspect of communication between an individual or organisation and the customers and markets it needs to reach.  Technology and digital has given us the opportunity to rethink PR because it’s no longer restricted to any channel.  It is also fostering a new era in PR where measurement and accountability is giving it renewed purpose.

However, the best value from PR will not come from it acting on its own and it requires a digital structure.  Marrying PR with digital business communications provides the ability to give order to an unstructured process and show where value is being delivered.

PR fundamentals remain the same – research, story creation, developing angles, creation of compelling and interesting stories and opinions for people to find interesting and wanting to come back for more, and placing them in media, whether traditional or self-created. 

However, the way we think about PR needs to be different.  No longer is it just a news deliverer, but a message and story communicator to people as they move along the pathway to become customers.  In this way PR can be used throughout to support a business’s goals, to help educate an audience prior to purchasing a product or service.  It builds trust and relationships, and is playing a support role in inbound marketing

The role of PR is expanding and it’s becoming a truly powerful tool to drive a business in the direction it wants to go, while also protecting it along the way.