The synchronicity of PR and HR services in brand reputation

When it comes to corporate success, brand reputation is a partnership between Public Relations and Human Resources and while seemingly distinct, the two entities share a surprising number of similarities when it comes to safeguarding and enhancing a brand’s image.

As a Public Relations agency, working with a Human Resources client, we regularly observe those similarities in our efforts to shape, protect and raise our clients’ reputations.  We act as diligent guardians of the brand. HR protects the internal brand by upholding values and fostering a positive workplace, while PR is responsible for protecting the external brand by demonstrating positive values and actions.

But like all good relationships, the work we do with brands, as PRs and HRs, must be based on trust and transparency and working with those who believe in doing the right thing. Here’s why…

Custodians of culture

Both PR and HR agencies are the gatekeepers of an organisation’s culture. HR is responsible for fostering a positive working environment, ensuring employee satisfaction, and promoting a culture that aligns with the brand’s values… while PR, on the other hand, communicates this culture externally, shaping the public’s perception of the company.

Communication experts

Effective communication is the lifeblood of both PR and HR. HR tells the internal story, crafting honest narratives that resonate with employees… while PR translates that internal success for external consumption, presenting an alignment in brand perception.

Aligning internal and external messaging is crucial for brand consistency. HR and PR should collaborate to ensure that the messages communicated to employees align seamlessly with those broadcasted to the public. This synergy prevents confusion and builds trust.

Employers of choice

HR agencies play a pivotal role in attracting and retaining top talent. It is good managers and a happy workforce that are a brand’s most valuable asset when it comes to hiring the right people… while PR, in turn, projects that positive image to the public, showcasing the company as a true, employer of choice.

Happy employees are powerful brand advocates. HR fosters an environment where employees feel engaged and proud to be associated with the brand… while PR amplifies this advocacy externally, turning employees into authentic ambassadors for the company.

Crisis management

In the stormy seas of crises, both PR and HR agencies must navigate the issue together to ensure minimal damage to the brand. HR will manage the internal crises, addressing employee concerns and maintaining morale… while, simultaneously, PR works externally to mitigate reputational damage and communicate the company’s stance.

For more information on supporting your brand with PR (or HR!), get in touch with us today.

The importance of influencers in PR campaigns

Social media influencers are everywhere today, and subconsciously or not we are influenced by what they say. Followers trust what their favourite influencers say, so working with them is crucial to your marketing strategy for your PR campaigns. In fact, the influencer marketing industry is set to reach $16.4B (£13.5B) in 2022.*

What is an influencer?

Influencers, as you may have guessed, influence people via social media by sharing what they do in a day, what they may be buying and their hobbies, typically with a significant following. Not all influencers have millions of followers … nano and micro influencers, for instance, might have between 1,000 and 50,000 followers, whilst celebrity influencers, such as Kylie Jenner and Ariana Grande, will have hundreds of millions.

What do influencers add?

Companies will choose the influencers they want to work with based on their business goals. They may want to choose people who reflect their characteristics, such as a baby company wanting to collaborate with a mum; or a company may want to target its audience at an older or younger demographic. When done right, influencers can be the key to boosting a company and its profits.

Successful influencer campaigns

  • Daniel Wellington: In 2011, founder Filip Tysander used $15,000 to launch an influencer campaign on social media, which he now owes much of his success to. In a time when influencers were not everywhere you turned, Tysander took a chance on this new way of marketing, and it paid off. He would exchange a watch to micro influencers in return for a post featuring the watch, quoting the brand. Today, Daniel Wellington is worth an estimated $35.87 million** and partners with the likes of Hailey Bieber and Kendall Jenner.

 

  • Dunkin’ Donuts: 2020 saw the then most followed person on TikTok, Charli D’amelio, collaborate with Dunkin’ Donuts releasing a drink titled ‘The Charli’. Her 95 million followers responded extremely positively to the campaign, and over the next year, Dunkin’ held a competition on TikTok with the #dunkinmenucontest gaining 43.5 million views. Charli and Dunkin collaborated on merchandise that sold out and ‘The Charli Cold Foam’ was released. Since the first drink came out, 3/4 sales skyrocketed; there was a 57% increase in app downloads and a 20% increase in cold brew sales.*** This campaign also allowed Dunkin’ to expand their consumer base to teenagers and children.

 

  • Levi’s: In April last year, the brand worked with six celebrities/influencers, from rapper Jaden Smith to youtuber Emma Chamberlain to climate activist Xiye Bastide, in their ‘Buy Better, Wear Longer’ campaign. For Levi’s, the ad was ‘a call-to-action for Gen Zers, urging them to reuse, repurpose and reduce their consumer footprint.’**** The various industries the influencers came from, and their different supporters, brought a wide variety of potential new customers. After the first half of 2021, Levi’s profits were up 198% … yet another great example of influencer marketing.*****

 

The influencer marketing industry is rapidly growing, so if you are not using this strategy, it may worth your time of day!

Contact our team at Jennie Holland PR for a chat on how influencer marketing could work for your next project.

 

* https://influencermarketinghub.com/influencer-marketing-statistics/

** https://www.networthspot.com/danielwellington/net-worth/instagram/

***https://neoreach.com/the-charli/

****https://www.thedrum.com/news/2021/04/19/levi-s-enlists-jaden-smith-top-gen-z-influencers-first-global-campaign-3-years

*****https://www.forbes.com/sites/shelleykohan/2021/07/08/levi-profits-skyrocket-198-as-denim-trend-continues-to-evolve/?sh=37ef554f4b0d

Brand profiling in a pandemic

As a result of the pandemic, brands have had to become more resilient and forward-thinking, tweaking PR and communications strategies to ensure alignment with fast evolving consumer habits.

Whilst also focusing on the here and now, business owners need to be setting their sights on long-term security, and through well executed social media, PR and digital marketing, brands can better respond and communicate with audiences in these unprecedented times.

As we’re coming to the end of 2020 and looking to the new year, it’s more important than ever for brands to set sights on the future and ensure communications are strong. As PR professionals, we have shared key brand profiling considerations to help business owners adapt, survive and thrive.

Flexibility

There is a real emphasis on flexibility in terms of communications strategies, and planned content can change quickly, influenced by recent affairs. Consumers are looking for brands to be in tune with what is going on in the world and press and social content must reflect cultural and social issues.  To simply sell products and services is not enough anymore – consumers purchase with brands that are environmentally and socially conscious, so they feel happier when spending, so brand messaging needs to reflect this.

Shifts in consumer behaviour

With this shift in spending habits, consumers are now more open to exploring new brands, and value, quality and purpose are all key attributes that consumers look for. They are happy to move away from go-to brands, choosing alternative companies if they feel they are offered more. This change in consumer behaviour has opened up the market for brands to adjust reach and target key demographics.

Brand response

It has been found that around one in four social media posts now mention COVID-19, and consumers are really engaging with content geared to health, support and people. Creating more empathetic and impactful content is key to resonating with audiences, so tailor social and press materials to include relevant contextual topics.

Supporting the local community is also proving strong during the pandemic, with many pushing the ‘buy local’ and ‘support small’ initiatives. Brands that have successfully removed the outlook of ‘them vs us’ have done well during the pandemic, with consumers favouring the ‘all in this together’ approach, with real voices being heard.

Keeping consistent whilst acknowledging big shifts is also important for instilling trust in a brand. A strong and resilient company is one that a consumer can rely on at any point and brands that communicate with respect, clarity, honesty and consistency, will find consumers returning time and time again.

 

Contact us today at Jennie Holland PR – as your PR agency, we can adapt and implement new strategies, strengthening your brand and business.

Social media consumption post lockdown – what’s changed?

It’s been six months since the UK went into lockdown, and with so many people saving commuting time or being placed on Furlough Leave from their job, many of us had more free time than we have ever had before. The time spent on social media in the UK surged, with the average user spending four hours and two minutes a day scrolling through social media apps as a way to soak up free time.

Apps like Tik Tok are notorious for creating that casino slot machine lost time experience. It notably doesn’t have the time or a clock visible on the screen when using the app. Is this to ensure users lose track of time and continue to scroll through the infinite content? With increased screen time and saturation of content, many users are starting to pay close attention to how they are using social media platforms, to ensure that they are getting the most out of it without letting it take over their life.

What can brands learn from this and how can they ensure that their social media content is engaging and ethical?

Use trusted sources only

Users want credibility behind the posts and the content they are consuming. We all remember the misinformation and WhatsApp forwards that were circulated at the start of the pandemic – posts which stated that drinking lemon juice or taking hot baths could help fight off coronavirus – spread like wildfire across the internet. These were later ruled as false, misleading information. As a reaction to this, WhatsApp launched its ‘Coronavirus Information Hub’ in March 2020, which aimed to work alongside UNICEF UNDP, and WHO to tackle the spread of fake news and keep its global users informed about the pandemic.

Users want to know where the information they are consuming is coming from and whether they should believe it. When brands are posting content, it’s important they are from a trusted source or backed up by factual information as to not spread misinformation.

Take responsibility

Users are also taking time out from social media for mental health reasons. One of the more recent campaigns was the #digitaldetoxday on 5 September, where users announced to their followers that they would be taking 24 hours away from their screens to bring awareness to the way social media affects users’ mental health. The campaign was created by YouTuber, Zoe Sugg, mental health organisation #IAMWHOLE and Lush, to encourage users to reflect offline about how they live their lives online, and to introduce boundaries into their social media usage. Love Island presenter, Laura Whitmore, announced to her 1.2 million Instagram followers that she would be taking part in the campaign by taking a brief social media break to focus on herself.

The way users consume social media has changed dramatically over the last six months. Users are hyper-aware and expect truth and credibility when viewing posts. It is important that brands stay transparent when communicating with consumers and customers and are using social media platforms responsibly.

If you’d like help to ensure your social media channels remain engaging but credible, please get in touch with Jennie Holland PR.

PR campaigns need a 360-degree approach  

When it comes to planning your next impactful PR campaign, it goes without saying that you need to consider all aspects of your approach. PR is not just media relations; it encompasses all external communications, and with so many digital platforms available to share content on, and the impact and reach of these constantly evolving, your PR campaign needs to be managed strategically.

Some aspects of ‘traditional’ PR, for example press releases, are mainstays, but you are more likely to have a successful campaign if you implement aspects of digital PR alongside traditional efforts.

To get the best results for your campaigns, applying the PESO media model will help to ensure that any PR strategy implemented is covering all ground.

The acronym stands for Paid, Earned, Shared and Owned (PESO) media, and this framework is most beneficial when used as a planning tool to integrate different forms of media.

This framework was first introduced by Gini Dietrich, founder and CEO of marketing and communications firm, Arment Dietrich, in her 2014 book – Spin Sucks: Communication and Reputation Management in the Digital Age.

The PESO Model

Paid

Paid media is fast becoming a top feature of PR campaigns. This form of media uses; ambient advertising, sales promotion, PPC and SEO to place money behind the content to boost and control its distribution. When using paid media, it is important that you choose platforms to target according to the right audience, to yield the best results and avoid wasting your money.

You can monitor the average click through rate percentage and average cost per click to see if the advert is on track to achieve the objectives set at the beginning of the campaign. Selective and tailored messaging on platforms such as Facebook and Instagram will ensure that any messages resonate.

Earned

Earned media is a form of third-party endorsement. This can be achieved through more traditional media relations or through blogger and influencer relations. When used correctly, influencer marketing can generate 11x the ROI of traditional ads*.

The use of influencers can help your brand to reach new niche audiences with dedicated interests, while raising your profile across channels and platforms, in addition to many other benefits.

Shared

Shared media is also referred to as content marketing. It is centred around pushing content through social channels, but can also include affinity marketing, review sites and partnerships.

Affinity marketing is an aspect of PR that consists of a partnership between a company and an organisation that gathers persons sharing the same interests, to bring a greater consumer base to their services, products and opinions. A long-lasting relationship can be formed using this concept, in which both parties’ benefit. This can be rewarding especially during difficult times such as the COVID-19 pandemic.

Owned

Owned media describes any content and channel over which your company or organisation has complete control. It includes websites, publications, presentations, research, podcasts and webinars.

When used correctly, owned media channels can be successfully used to establish your company or organisation as thought leaders, whilst building long-term customer relationships.

At the centre of the PESO model is Authority. Optimised, shareable and engaging content should be a golden aim for any campaign alongside Google authorship.

The most successful PR campaigns have a tailored and strategic approach and utilising the relationship between all the media forms in the PESO model can ensure that your next PR campaign is launched with a foolproof strategy behind it.

Get in touch with us today to discover how your next PR campaign can reach its full potential.

*https://www.socialmediatoday.com/news/the-brand-value-of-influencer-marketing-in-2018-infographic/520810/

 

What are brand archetypes and why do they matter?

For business leaders, there has never before been so many resources available when it comes to shouting about your brand, products and services.

But in this competitive digital multiverse of content, social media platforms, celebrities and influencers, it is easy for your brand to become lost in all of the noise without a clear personality that shapes all of your online presence.

All brands have an identity – defining it depends on how you want to interact with your target audience, the products and services that your company offers and where your specialisms lie.

Do you sell advice, technology or something you’ve created?

Do you use specialist skills, rely on your industry contacts, or invest heavily in research and development to stay ahead of the competition?

How should consumers feel when they see or buy your product or service?

The answers to these questions are a good place to start when defining your brand’s personality – in the early 20th century, Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst Carl Jung developed a list of universal brand archetypes that can be identified in all aspects of life, from our dreams and religions to our art and fairy tales.

Now, these brand archetypes have been adopted by advertising professionals all over the world as a way of visualising and summarising a brand’s identity, helping it to connect more effectively with the consumer.

Brands can fit broadly into one, sometimes two, of the following 12 Brand Archetypes:

  • The Innocent – pure, simple, trustworthy and safe

Example: Coca Cola

  • The Sage – wise, understanding and truth-seeking

Example: Trip Advisor

  • The Explorer – adventurous, free, ambitious and spiritual

Example: North Face

  • The Outlaw or Rebel – free-spirited, brave, agent of change and unconventional

Example: Virgin

  • The Magician – making dreams come true

Example: Disney

  • The Hero – determined, skilful and ruthless

Example: Nike

  • The Everyman – relatable, reliable, empathetic and connects with others

Example: PG Tips

  • The Jester – playful, joyful and carefree

Example: Paddy Power

  • The Lover – passionate, romantic and committed

Example: Chanel

  • The Caregiver or Nurturer – compassionate, generous and strong

Example: Johnson & Johnson

  • The Ruler – in control, confident, firm but fair

Example: Mercedes

  • The Creator – innovative, imaginative and expressive

Example: Lego

Which archetype best aligns with your company’s products, industry reputation and specialities?

Once you’ve decided, have a look at globally renowned brands and see what they are talking about on social media, on their website and in their adverts. You’ll begin to notice the consistencies and patterns in the language they use and the images they portray – and you can do the same with your brand’s online presence and marketing materials, to build an identity that your customers will come to recognise and trust.

Interested in learning more about our social media services? We can help. Get in touch with Jennie Holland PR for all things social on 0115 998 3048 or hello@jenniehollandpr.com