Navigating the world of PR – my time with Jennie Holland PR

by Saskia Purdy

Upon completion of my second year studying Business and Marketing at Northumbria University in Newcastle, I had the opportunity to join the team at Jennie Holland PR in my home town of Nottingham.

I’d wanted to broaden my skillset and learn more about the PR industry, so an internship was the perfect opportunity to do both!

As a marketing student with a keen interest in public relations, I wanted to gain knowledge and hands-on experience in a professional setting. JHPR had a broad client base, working across a diverse range of industries and this has been particularly beneficial, allowing me to understand and see in practice, how strategies are altered depending on the requirements of the clients.

From my first day, I was made to feel very welcome. I had never worked in a partially remote role before, so I was apprehensive as to how I would adjust to this new way of working, but we had regular zoom calls and kept in close contact daily, with no question being a silly question!

On the first day of my three-week internship, Rebecca gave me an overview of what tasks I would be working on and I worked with the team on a variety of content – including blogs, social media strategy and content, coverage systems, reports, press content and lots of important client research!

Having previously focused on social media for a house listings role, it was great to put my skills into practice with the social media strategy and I felt like I learned so many valuable time management and organisational skills during my placement.

Attending client meetings was a significantly important part of my internship and it was fascinating to hear the team sharing creative ideas, troubleshooting issues and planning strategies.

My time at Jennie Holland PR has flown by, but the experience has been invaluable in moving forward with my final year of education. I take with me practical experience and feel my skills have developed, and I’m very much look forward to using my new insights into the PR industry, in the future.

With everyone at Jennie Holland PR’s support, I feel my confidence has improved and I feel more equipped to transition smoothly from university into a professional environment.

Evolving media trends and what they mean for the current PR landscape

by Saskia Purdy

The constantly evolving media landscape makes keeping up with the latest trends important. From AI to smart technology and everything in between, businesses need to consider all-encompassing plans that enable them to holistically integrate contemporary media methods.

Here are our top three media trends to consider:

  1. Artificial Intelligence

It is common for users of generative AI platforms such as Chat GPT to ask broad questions for tips and tricks. Although opinions about chatbots vary, it is undeniable that their prevalence is growing. As of 2024, AI platforms rank among the top three information-searching strategies for Gen Z. Its expected this will continue to grow with Gen Alpha, with 20% of 12-15 years olds primarily using social media to browse for products to buy. How can this be applied to your business? As consumers increasingly consider AI for shopping assistance, businesses will gain a competitive edge by experimenting early with AI-driven features.

  1. Social Media

Changes within the broader trends might make it more challenging for businesses to keep up with them. Depending on how a business adapts, these changes could have a favourable or unfavourable impact on them. Social media is a prime example of this. Although an untraditional method, it has been integral to the PR of businesses for some time now. So what are some of the main growing trends in social media?

-Video is King. Whilst long format is becoming more popular with over half the time users spend on TikTok is spent watching videos over a minute long, short-form video still remains the best performing video form. Regardless of length, video marketing remains a leading method in PR and marketing.

-Social commerce, whilst not suitable for all businesses, is a method which reaches a new, wider demographic through a more dynamic, responsive, and engaging format than traditional methods. With an average of over 2 hours a day spent on social media, it is undoubtable that social commerce will only grow in popularity.

-SEO on social channels increases sales through creating shareable content and building a strong following. 40% of Gen Z choose to search on TikTok rather than Google. This method allows businesses to attract more targeted traffic through increased visibility and higher engagement.

How can this be applied to your business? Posting regular content on your social media channels can not only increase product sales, but also help portray your brand identity to consumers, building their trust through authenticity and communication.

  1. Data Driven Narratives

In the crowded news environment, data driven storytelling has become increasingly attractive to journalists looking for fresh stories with an edge. Data is being leveraged to enhance campaigns, inform decisions, and launch innovative PR strategies. Incorporating data into PR strategies has multiple benefits:

-Captivating and Compelling Pitches to Journalists

-Creating Impactful Stories

-Reach and Resonate with Readers

How can this be applied to your business? By leaning into the trend of Data Driven PR, a company can become more strategic in their communication with journalists and their readers, aligning the method direction with their goals.

For more information on how we can take your PR strategy to the next level with ever-changing media trends, get in touch today.

Why having an environmental strategy is very important for brands

Earth Day this month was just one opportunity for brands to communicate what they are doing to protect the environment, sharing their efforts and striking up inspiring conversations to feed into the national awareness occasion.

UK governments have set the target of achieving net zero by 2050 and so now more than ever, it is important to ensure business strategies include environmental goals – not only for the health of the planet, but to demonstrate how brands are being active in supporting communities and the wider world.

An ESG strategy is pivotal for businesses of all sizes to ensure the net zero transition is as robust as it can be. As well as encouraging buy in from eco-conscious consumers, a clear sustainability strategy that shares your brand’s values and efforts to work towards a set vision, has also been proven to attract investment alongside top talent.

At Jennie Holland PR, environmental protection is close to our hearts, and we have partnered with My Square Metre and Tree Sisters to offset our carbon usage with tree planting and wildflower planting – alongside taking part in local litter picking initiatives often.

As a brand that cares, we have compiled the top reasons why an environmental strategy should be at the core of what brands are doing to promote themselves:

  1. Gets you noticed

Sustainable activity is an optimal element of brand strategy and with so much of the UK working towards being more eco-conscious, any efforts will be well received by those looking to hear more from your brand, so it’s worthwhile shouting about what you are doing through multiple channels.

  1. Adds value

Your audiences want to make the right decision when it comes to investing in a service that they need and alongside having a quality product, choosing brands that show care and support for the environment is what will add value for them and sway them towards picking you – so don’t hesitate to talk about eco-conscious activity whenever possible.

  1. Talent acquisition and retention

Candidates are more likely to choose companies that are demonstrative in giving back to the community and the environment, so alongside attracting consumers, ensuring your sustainability strategy is evident during a recruitment drive is fundamental.

  1. Investor relations

As well as candidates, investors will find your brand more of an attractive option to invest in when you demonstrate value through sustainability. Incorporating this into your ESG strategy provides evidence that you are committed to the future of your business, the communities in which your company operates, and the government’s net zero targets, working towards a greener future.

For more information on how we can advise on sustainability strategy and communications, please get in touch: hello@jenniehollandpr.com or call 0115 998 3048.

ENDS

Using live radio in your PR strategy

88% of the world population listens to live radio on average for 20.3 hours per week. A captive audience, usually listening in the car, on public transport, at work or in the kitchen at home! Radio is highly effective in sharing business messages.

Data shows that people listen more avidly when listening to the radio rather than TV, and while national radio has a larger reach, local radio packs a punch too with high listener figures who tune in for local news and conversation, and to be connected with their community.

As a PR team we work to secure radio interview spots with our clients to help raise the profile of their businesses . Not only are our clients getting the exposure from digital radio, this is also great content for their social media channels and news section on their website.

Want your brand heard by thousands of engaged listeners? Contact us to discuss our ideas for your business.

Beyond Robin Hood: Exploring Nottingham’s hidden gems

By Amber Macey

In the heart of the East Midlands lies a city with a rich tapestry of history, culture, and modern charm.

Welcome to Nottingham! Where every cobbled street whispers tales of legends past, and every corner holds the promise of a new adventure.

Nottingham’s history dates back centuries – renowned for its lace-making industry and the legendary home of the heroic outlaw Robin Hood, the city wears its heritage proudly.

Perched majestically on its rocky throne, Nottingham Castle stands as a guardian of Nottingham’s past. Originally constructed by William the Conqueror in the 11th century, the castle has witnessed countless chapters of England’s tumultuous history, from medieval conflicts to royal intrigues. But Nottingham’s history isn’t confined to the castle walls alone. Wander through the Lace Market, where the echoes of Nottingham’s industrial past resonate through the beautifully preserved Victorian architecture.

If you were told Nottingham’s home to over 500 caves going all the way back to the dark ages, would you believe it? Dating back to the medieval times and originally quarried for their sandstone; these caves served a range of purposes from homes, workplaces, storage spaces and even air raid shelters during World War II. Guided tours lead visitors through a maze of passages.

Nottingham also provides a haven of contemporary expression for art enthusiasts. The city is home to several galleries showcasing both local talent and internationally acclaimed artists. One such gem is the Nottingham contemporary, a world-class gallery renowned for its thought-provoking exhibitions and innovative programming. Situated in the Lace Market, this architectural marvel not only houses captivating artwork but also serves as a hub for students and professionals to peacefully work.

For those who revel in the great outdoors, Nottingham offers an abundance of green spaces to explore. Lose yourself in the beauty of Wollaton park, where the grandeur of Wollaton Hall never fails to impress, or take a leisurely stroll along the scenic River Trent. Nature enthusiasts will delight in the diverse flora and fauna of Sherwood Forest – cycle, hike or simply bask in the serenity of nature.

But Nottingham isn’t just about its rich history and cultural offerings, it’s also a city brimming with opportunities for growth and prosperity, especially for students. Home to two prestigious universities, the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University, the city boasts a thriving academic community. Compared to other major cities in the UK, Nottingham offers relatively affordable living costs, making it easier for students to manage their expenses. From accommodation to dining out and entertainment, the plethora of offers, means students can enjoy a high quality of life without breaking the bank.

So, Nottingham is far from just a city – it’s a living, breathing tapestry of history, culture, and opportunity. Whether you’re strolling through the historic Lace Market district or exploring the winding tunnels of the City of Caves, there’s truly something for everyone. It’s a city where tradition and innovation coexist, where the past informs the present and paves the way for future.

The importance of seasonal planning in any communications strategy

Alongside harnessing reactive opportunities, forward planning should form a core part of a communications strategy.

Planning ahead for the month, quarter and even year is beneficial, to ensure overarching business objectives are intrinsic to tactics and deliverables.

While certain seasons provide mainstay awareness dates to tap into, such as Valentine’s Day, Easter Sunday, Black Friday and Christmas, there are many national and international awareness weeks which will strike up opportunities for your brand to be part of online and offline conversations.

Alongside being the ideal time to talk, brands can look to develop bigger impactful campaigns to get noticed and showcase their product and offering.

However, it’s important to ensure the timing and execution of content is relevant – too early and you’ll miss the buzz, too late and everyone will have moved on – so plan and triple check your content for the best impact.

We’ve compiled our list of reasons for why seasonal content planning is vital:

  • Seasonal content is more emotionally resonant – we’re all aware of the main holidays and have grown up making memories each year during these occasions, so in terms of relatability – annual holidays and awareness dates are a prime time to reach and resonate with your audiences

 

  • Engagement and interaction is higher – seasonal content tends to perform well in terms of garnering engagement, so regular relevant content around awareness days is worthwhile.

 

  • Your brand will be part of the national conversation – join in the conversations and learn insights from others while you’re doing it. A buzzing online or offline space is a fantastic opportunity to showcase what you do and get in front of as many people as possible, which does wonders for your brand awareness.

 

  • You have time to dedicate to good research – planning in advance ensures that you can deliver impactful content and wider campaigns, so use the planning time wisely. It’ll be worthwhile when it comes to your return on investment

 

Could your brand do with some extra love? Speak to our communications specialists for a friendly, focused chat on 0115 998 3048.

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.

What does Threads mean for your business?

In less than a week, new social media app aimed at rivalling Twitter, Threads, has already had more than 100 million sign ups.

Steven Bartlett, Entrepreneur, BBC Dragon, and the host of the podcast, ‘The Diary of a CEO’, said “Twitter is in transition. Its advertising products have never been able to compete with Meta’s, Elon is limiting the amount of tweets you can read and the site is feeling less ‘safe’ for more and more people than ever,” so some individuals and businesses are taking this new launch as an opportunity to shift away from Twitter’s controversy. But should you be doing the same?

Some key differences between the two apps are that Threads allows 500 characters per post, instead of Twitter’s 280, and video uploads of up to five minutes, compared to Twitter’s two minutes 20 seconds. However, the new platform does not allow direct messaging or hashtags, nor does it include trending stories. There is no way to search for content on the app, and while this might sound like a “limitation, it’s also going to create less cancel-culture, less of a mob mentality and less bandwagoning,” Steven Bartlett commented.

So, what does this all mean for businesses? Should you be franticly downloading the new app in order to keep up with the ever-changing world of social media? Or should you just sit back and wait to see how it continues to perform?

It might be a good idea to start experimenting on Threads now, as early adopters of Meta apps are typically ‘rewarded’, meaning your Instagram and Facebook accounts could experience growth as well. As it’s a new app, there are fewer complex algorithms to try and adhere to, and no tried-and-tested strategy to implement, so it’s perfect for authenticity. If you’re feeling burnt out from constantly trying to keep up with other platforms’ changes, a fresh start on a new app may spark some much needed creativity.

However, you must already have an Instagram account in order to sign up to Threads and if you then decide it’s not for you or your business, you cannot delete your Threads profile without deleting the associated Instagram profile, however it can be temporarily deactivated.

The app has also already raised privacy concerns about how it may collect information about a user’s digital activity, including health and fitness, financial, employment and other sensitive information.

LinkedIn continues to be an excellent platform for connecting with other businesses and individuals in a professional setting, so it may not be necessary to also be on this ‘new version of Twitter’, especially as it is not yet approved for use in the EU.

There is a tendency for some to approach social media marketing with a quantity over quality mindset, but it may be best to focus your attention on just one business facing platform and one general public facing platform and do them really well.

In short, the jury is still out when it comes to Threads. Many are really enjoying it, others are completely avoiding it, and we cannot yet say what is the best course of action. It’s currently down to personal preference, but there are definitely a few things to consider before adding another platform to your roster.

No matter your goal, we are here to help with your social media marketing. If the trends and algorithms changes are confusing you, if you don’t have the time or personnel to focus on content creation or copy writing, then Jennie Holland PR should be your first point of call. Get in touch today on 0115 998 3048 or email us at hello@jenniehollandpr.com.

My time as an intern at Jennie Holland PR

Before embarking on my journey as a PR intern at Jennie Holland PR, I didn’t know what to expect at all, but after three weeks, I can say it was the best decision I made.

Over the course of my internship, I witnessed first-hand the ins and outs of the PR industry – from social media management to content creation, to crating videos and listening in on client updates in our Monday morning catch ups.

As an ambivert, it takes a while to be comfortable and adapting to new surroundings can be quite challenging. However, from the moment I walked into the office, I knew not only was I going to learn a lot but that it was the best environment for personal growth.

One of the most significant takeaways from this experience was the realisation that confidence is key! Talk to people, ask questions, no question is too trivial.

So, what did I learn from my time at Jennie Holland PR?

The reality of PR

As a journalism student, I had a very basic understanding of PR as there is so much more to it and I had the opportunity to be involved in many aspects of activity including the creation of press material,  social media audits for clients, media landscape and contact research and digital media creation –  which has really fuelled my passion for PR. I discovered the importance of time management and got the chance to work across a multitude of brands and clients. While this may seem stressful to others, I realised there’s no better feeling than seeing the results you work hard work for!

Teamwork makes the dream work.

The JHPR team were incredibly supportive and nurturing and working alongside the team taught me the importance of teamwork and how collaborative thinking can produce amazing results.

The team always made me feel at home, like I was a long-standing member and work never felt like a burden while I was there. From team lunches to breakfasts mornings, the environment was everything one could hope for in a workplace.

Maintaining relationships  

I learned that maintaining a healthy balance between putting clients’ desires and needs first, whilst offering valuable advice was crucial to producing strong results. Transparency, active listening and meticulous attention to detail are also vital in nurturing long lasting relationships with clients.

Overall, my time at JHPR was enriching, filled with laughter and numerous lessons. Working alongside professionals who willingly shared their expertise and answered my questions, helped to grow my confidence and inform me about future career routes. The last three weeks have confirmed my passion for PR and I’m excited to see how this experience will shape my future endeavours as I make my mark in the world of PR.

How to know when the time is right for a rebrand

Your branding is the face of your company; therefore, arguably, it is one of the most important aspects of your business. 

If you believe you’ve reached a stagnant point as a company, or are simply seeking a refresh, then rebranding may be the key to unlocking new potential for your company, 

While the concept may be daunting, it could be worth considering if you’re struggling to align with your customers’ demands and expectations.  

In the past, brands have faced backlash from consumers due to rebranding, as they haven’t done their research or thought about their audience, leading to confusion and frustration. 

So, how exactly do you know if it’s the right time for a brand refresh? 

Your brand image no longer aligns with your vision 

It’s evident that as time goes on, brand names can become outdated due to a flurry of different reasons – from the cultural context changing, to the fact that it may not represent what your brand stands for anymore. 

A strong brand name is your main touchpoint with consumers. 

While helping to differentiate yourself from competitors, a good brand name ensures your company is memorable. 

Remember, if you’re wanting to rename, research is vital as businesses may already occupy the name, alongside trademark vetting and URL research.  

You’re failing to differentiate from competitors 

A key indicator it’s time to rebrand is when you’re failing to stand out against the crowd. 

Branding is all about competitive differentiation, and being able to communicate what sets you apart from the rest ensures you can remain at the forefront of consumers’ minds. 

By focusing on your competitive advantage, you can define your brand

If you’re wanting to tap into a new target market, it could be time to consider rebranding, in order to align with a specific audience. 

Fostering brand loyalty among new segments starts with ensuring your brand is relevant to their needs, so be sure to conduct your research into the behaviours, attitudes and demands of that demographic. 

Essentially, a rebrand enables you to redefine yourself with the goal of reaching untapped audiences.