PR Trends in 2019: Anup Sharma, PRCAI

Guest Column: From Artificial Intelligence to Engagement, Anup Sharma, Senior Director at PRCAI takes us through some of the PR trends we are likely to see in 2019

AnupSharma

The Public Relations trends in 2019 may be more about laying the groundwork, as innovation and speed will be required to create awareness, protect and improve reputation, and produce revenues.

With new technologies controlling media and media controlling the message; with audience moving from Likes to Engagement, Influencers to micro-influencers; from large shared screens to personal screens on wearable device; from fake news to data privacy; with the country gearing up for elections, 2019 will be all about perceptions, and the Public Relations industry will have another busy and exciting year in 2019, managing perceptions and narratives, pushing the boundaries to keep pace with the demanding stakeholders.

From YOUR story to THEIR story

 In an 'always-on' world, where everybody is always scrolling on their phones; where (all sorts of) information is virtually provided by Google or Alexa, organisations will need to create "meaningful" content to attract the attention of consumers. Social media isn't just changing the way we consume news, but it’s also changing the way we create news. For today’s social & mobile powered world, brands are once again, who the people say they are. In 2019 the PR objective will rapidly shift away from telling people your stories, to empowering the customers to tell their story for the brand. No matter how creative the communication campaign, or how loud it is told – in 2019 the voice of the people will have the potential to be louder.

Engagement for "Purpose"

In the age of hyper-connected and hyper-transparency, organisations will keep re-evaluating their "purpose in society" and the narratives will reinforce the same. In the digitally connected age, organisations will have the challenge to cut through the noise with credibility and stand out in the crowd to be seen as authentic and credible. The PR & Digital campaigns of 2019 will integrate new ideas and voices to showcase organisations committed as long term partners in supporting a more inclusive economy and sustainable environment.

Blurring lines, Engaging Conversations

 In 2019 the lines between paid and earned media will continue to blur further; fake news and facts will continue to battle it out. With emotions and personal belief holding more weight than facts, consumers will go wherever they get the most authentic, timely, and rich content. Organisations will continue to face the big challenge to produce effective storytelling and be more meaningful. The PR campaigns in 2019 will not only control the narratives but also manage the Truth-Trust-Transparency and the communication outreach will focus on cultivating an engaging relationship with the stakeholders.

PESO redefined the Artificial Intelligence way

In 2019 communication professionals will integrate artificial intelligence to enhance effective storytelling. To gain larger and measurable share of stakeholder attention, PR campaigns will use the PESO (Paid/Earned/Shared/Owned) model to ‘promote’ Earned media through Owned and Paid media and multiply reach through a ‘Push’ using the Shared media (Messenger services / social media) - using consistent content distribution across multiple channels using a combination of traditional and new media.

Information Overload

From scarcity to abundance: From data to knowledge: The extraordinary amount of data available in the Digital Age will bring back the strategic role of PR professionals as social managers of knowledge, a role to be shared with an increasing number of new players. Clients will look at professionals to bring innovative digital ideas and someone who is at the forefront of the thinking on digital. The overflow of information in 2019 will call for new skills and tools to manage data, news, and opinions.

Multimedia is the new language in 2019

 While 2018 saw the rise of integrated communication, in 2019 with more people going digital and having the ability to choose content and platform options Multimedia will be the catalyst to engagement.

As stakeholders demand a more engaging experience the PR professionals in 2019 will work with more partners, who will offer advancements in emerging technologies, providing rich multimedia tools, with visual storytelling and interactive capabilities.

PR firms will upscale their resources and continue to invest in technology - Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning for Social listening not only to identify and mitigate potential crises for their clients but also to cater to the upgraded digital newsrooms of the media houses.

(The author is Senior Director at Public Relations Consultants Association of India)

 

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author and do not in any way represent the views of exchange4media.com

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