2020 has been a year of contemplation and adjustments for everyone across the length & breadth of the country, with no religion, caste or income as a bar. The definition of brands/products and their positioning has changed, and most importantly, the biggest difference is because of the change in buying capacity and behavior of the end customer. The current condition because of the pandemic has made an inevitable impact on the global economy, leaving no stones unturned. The year 2020 had its epic highs but some ground-breaking laws because of COVID-19. However, as it’s well said, ‘the show must go on…’ we are back to the normal face of life and are now sailing back to our commitments. All kinds of business and communities also function similarly.
Public Relations have seen a progressive curve over the years and COVID-19 has been no different, only challenges faced amongst others are the delays in payments. Yet the trend and the need in this critical hour has been no different, the brands yet were producing and have maintained equilibrium in both demand and supply. Need not to mention the lockdown has taught many of us to stay home and work and still be productive, and companies/organisations have learned to delegate and manage work keeping their employee strength at ease. Where the work environment has become convenient, people are spending quality time with family and learning to spare a helping hand in household work. While brands on the other hand have well understood that the focus of all kinds of products/goods has changed and brands have to create a recall for all across family members in different age groups.
With changing roles of family members, environment in terms of requirements and focus according to the circumstances, we have become more flexible to take upon responsibilities and stay together with our families. While yes this trend is changing, something else is changing even more, and that is the essence of market positioning of brands and recall of products/services of daily use. Similarly, Public Relations is also looking forward to a complete shift. The curve of communication has evolved, and trends in 2021 will lead to a different outcome.
Few changes that will be trend-setters for the PR community in 2021 are:
Since there is a paradigm shift, the best way to work in benefit for both parties is to do collaborations between brand and agency. Brands can share their products and against which they will receive the PR Services. These deals will work in favor for both, as the brand will have to incur minimal cost and there will be better brand recall and will get in turn many first-time users who will do trial tests.
- Visual Implication
Meaningful interactions usually are done via two-way conversations with audio supporting texts, a message with the right intent and emotion is meaningless. Nowadays most social media platforms like FB and YouTube are also supporting and promoting visually impactful under priority segments of their platforms. It has become extremely imperative to be appealing to the audiences and communicating with the end customer. With certainty of better engagement and better output and messaging Visual implication of communicating the most important messages and amplification will be a new communication curve in the times to come
- Experimenting and Testing fresh approaches
This will be a common approach for most business models, since they will have to experiment with new ideas and check for new approaches. The entire system has had a complete paradigm shift with COVID-19. To work out better business models and alternate approaches for most businesses moving their base to permanent work from home model, it is crucial that we figure new avenues of communicating than being physically present at all times. One of the most key examples in the PR community has been the shift of physical events to Zoom Videos/Webinars, which has a host of audience like our press conferences/events. Such changes have become necessary and are the only way to look forward.
- PR will play the most crucial role as brand-builders
However, as per matrix/facts & figures most businesses have seen a sluggish behavior in the past few months. With the year coming close to its end, all businesses are planning to contemplate the future of their business and brand, especially when there are budget crunches and constant mulling over spends in marketing. However, at most a time PR comes handy as it is much cheaper compared to the other marketing spends like OOH, Advertisement amongst others. While all these platforms of creating brand recall will still exist. What will be a major change is the PR will become most important amongst these other communication models?
For decades, PR has often been misinterpreted as primarily media relations, and this uncertain time has allowed us to really showcase all the diverse tools in our toolbox. Hence at any time you feel the need of the hour and important to create an existence of your brand and at the same time looking for an innovative solution to reach out to your audience, please reach out to a PR partner.
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