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EIKONA Connect: PR Industry betting big on visuals to tackle dipping time spent on Print

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EIKONA Connect: PR Industry betting big on visuals to tackle dipping time spent on Print and Eikona, the Neutral, Earned Media Planning, Audit & Advisory Service, jointly bring to you an info graphic fortnightly series called EIKONA connect. This series will focus on quick interesting nuggets of PR/Earned Media Trends and dynamics faced by the Professionals of Corporate Communications & PR Firms. The objective is to create and inculcate informed opinion about PR and aid towards Scientific Decision Making Process.

With the explosion of 3 screens, the amount of time an Indian used to spend (Time spent) on Print medium is slowly diminishing. Multi-screen (TV and Online) are eating into Print’s giant share of maximum Time Spent. To attract an individual to a print title, maintain his/her interest levels on all news items in that title, is getting tougher.

What does this mean for us in the PR Industry? Well, given that most of the Industry verticals, across the Indian Economy, still need Communication support through ink, this could have been a cause of huge concern for us Brand Communicators. But, guess what? We are here for a pleasant surprise!

The PR Industry is tackling this ground change with dexterity. They are ensuring that most of their/Client’s Brand communication is supported by more possible number of visual touchpoints and lesser amount of text. The PR professionals are ensuring that whatever time a reader spends on a Newspaper or Magazine, it results in maximum stickiness for the Brand in news.

Examples of visuals can range from: Pictures of Product, Spokespersons, Office or Factory, Logos, Packaging, Human Interest faces, Brand Endorsers, Technology, Emotions, etc.

If you see the chart above, of the overall print news/editorial volume across the Top 15 sectors, a Brand’s Visuals used to contribute about 35% in 2013. The same, during (Jan-Oct)  2015, has seen a jump to 42%. In other words, the importance on Text communications has seen a dip from 65% in 2013 to 52% this year.

Some quick observations on this interesting change:

  • Ad space is exerting pressure on Editorial space in print
  • For Editorial space to maintain relevance, in a scenario of limited/diminishing Time Spent, use of Visuals is becoming pertinent.
  • For PR Industry professionals, given that the attention of a news reader is getting disturbed by multiscreen, the challenge is to ensure that the reader remembers the news. Visuals is the best option.
  • Human Interest stories seeing a rise. Brand riding this wave through Visuals.
  • Not only tangible sectors, but surprisingly, even intangible sectors like BFSI, IT, etc. are making interesting use of visuals – not just pictures of spokespersons. Use of Human Interest stories and emotions, Manufacturing facility, Customer Endorsers, Certified Financial Planners, etc.
  • Inclusion of Visuals are becoming an important part of every Communication/Media Kit.
  • Spokespersons and Brand Endorsers are spending time to showcase the right mood and emotions in the picture during the photo shoot.
  • Infographics are not only getting used in regular or conventional Public Relations but also in email and digital communications.

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