“The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about.” – Oscar Wild.
Business Works shines a light on the PR and communications trends for 2021 to ensure you and your business are talked about in the year ahead.
Reporter Ruby Edwards collates the styles for the new season in a snapshot of what to expect in the world of comms for the year ahead:
Integrity: stand up for what you believe in and be authentic about it. Be loud and proud with your messaging both externally and internally. Think ethical public relations, personal branding and reputation management. Clients are much more likely to buy-in to your brand if they believe in you.
Trust: customers want accurate information from all sources, from journalists, employers and influencers, to ensure they gain a fair representation from all parties. Fake news is so 2020: even influencers will be called upon to be fair, honest and open.
Personalisation: customers will believe in your brand far more if they understand it and can buy-in to the way it works. Think Gymshark. BrewDog. They grew their brands exponentially in 2020. Thinking outside of the box and involving their customers with every move. Regional targeting will be big too – so big up your local messaging.
Transparency: clear messaging with open and honest communications to build a customer and employee/team appreciation. Then enjoy real conversations with people who matter most to your business. And then pivot and adapt to the feedback.
Innovation: finding new ways to communicate and driving change. Embrace the technological changes and make them integral to your business. Hear what the experts are saying about innovation, watch how it supports business growth in IT, AI and local accelerator or growth hubs like WINN-HUB, the Herefordshire & Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce, the LEP and Betaden in Worcestershire. More: winn-hub.com, hwchamber.co.uk, www.wlep.co.uk and www.beta-den.com. Plus the Black Country Growth Hub, LEP and Chamber of Commerce i.e. Start-up Business Club. More: www.bcgrowthhub.com, www.blackcountrylep.co.uk, www.blackcountrychamber.co.uk and www.thinksandwell.com.
Digital: analogue is in decline and digital has achieved mastery in the battle of the comms. Understand the change and get on board with the new technologies that can support your business. There are often grants for start-ups – see what’s out there. It’s worth a look.
Omni-channels: businesses will be expected to communicate across all social channels to increase customer engagement. The rise of the ChatBot and Podcasts seems inevitable, take a look at what they can do to help you interact and capture data.
Analytics: clients will want to understand the data behind the posts and learn how their customers are behaving on their websites and social platforms. Posting is not enough, learning what works and why, which message drives most sales and how they can adapt from feedback, is essential in the digital age.
Data: businesses will continue to battle data breaches and expect more from their privacy and security systems. Compliance issues around GDPR and Brexit will also be prevalent to those who do business outside of the UK.
Upskilling and building: utilising opportunities to learn and grow from every experience and every client – both internal and external – taking what you learnt from 2020 and moving forward. PR in 2021 is something to jump aboard!