How can PR professionals engage with the Influencers?


Increasing number of brands are reaching out to the thought leaders and third-party experts that influence buying behavior in their respective industries. Recent studies indicate that most of the media is expected to act like the B2B buyers. 50%-70% of the buying decision is made before the B2B buyer speaks to a sales representative. The buyers have done a thorough research on the product by checking with the domain experts, checking for people’s views and reviews on social networks and more.

Public Relations is about ‘Influencing the Influencer’ but somehow the industry has been limiting itself to media relations. Influencers can greatly impact the PR program: they have high credibility, are authoritative and are trustworthy among the community. Thus the traditional approach to PR will have to be redesigned to understand the key influencers for the brand, develop strategies to build relationships with the unbiased third-party experts.

To start with one needs to go through a comprehensive…

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Take a Leap from just being to ‘Being Positive’

positive-attitudeHope you had an opportunity to read my last week’s post on ‘Celebrating Happiness’, which talks about how you can celebrate happiness even in the gloomiest situations. Our jobs particularly have all the reasons to make the sanest person pessimist but still you will find people around you who are always brimming with fullness, they are eternally happy; positive and charged. They are the high performers, clients love them, bosses can’t do without them and success is always under their feet. They are the ones who are sometimes called turnaround specialists (they readily accept the most horrible client and make them eat out of their hands); face the crisis head-on and clients insist to have them around in bad times; they win all competitive new business pitches and take home great increments as well.

Then on the other hand we have people who do all the above tasks but…

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Customer Engagement – the next competitive battleground for brands

Customer-Engagement-customer-serviceCustomers are demanding superior service and relationships with companies from across sectors. Companies need to broaden their horizons and address customer-engagement needs, enable more rapid responses, and building internal lines of communication, these steps will help create nimbler organizations.

Customer engagement is quintessential for all industries and requires strengthening your relationship with your current customers and establishing high-value customer relationships. It is all about understanding the rational and emotional needs of your customers thus showcasing the value of your services.

The PR industry that primarily functions on relationships and engagement has somehow lost the essence of this competency. Managers and executives are engrossed in the rigormorole of media coverage and the leadership team is running behind getting more business and does not do much to maintain the existing client base.

Here are some ways to enhance customer engagement across your organization:

  1. Leap in Consulting Value: Be more proactive in analyzing…

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Celebrate Happiness

Happy-FacePR as a profession is ranked as one of the most stressful profession. PR practitioners as we would like to be identified work relentlessly towards creating and maintaining a positive image for their clients or companies they work for. The job as we all know involves extreme pressure either for coverage or for new business, tight deadlines, lesser resources and sometimes even dealing with abusive journalists or clients.

Serious PR practitioners (spent over 4 years in the business), who see this as the only profession towards their career fulfillment often work under extreme stress. Corporate communications are still comparatively better placed, but agency side practitioners are under constant stress leading to excessive smoking, drinking, unhealthy diet and loads of other complementary illnesses. Happiness is something that does not come naturally, unless induced through such artificial means or you are really lucky to have some good colleagues, bosses and friends around…

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PR professionals should be armed with Mantras, Tantras & Yantras to get a place in the boardroom

12In Hindu mythology, there is a renowned folk tale about King Kausik also known as Visvamitra of the lunar dynasty, he possessed extra ordinary qualities and ruled the kingdom well. One of the interesting incidents which caught my attention was the king’s tour of his kingdom with a large army. He was passing a forest when he came across the hermitage of Sage Vaisistha, the sage offered him a grand reception and requested him to be his guest. The king declined as the sage would not have been able to feed the large army. Sage told the king not to worry and informed him that the Sage had wish fulfilling cow (kamadehnu) sabala. The Sage called out to the divine cow Kamadehnu, who was born during churning of the ocean and was presented to Sage Vaisitha. Vaisistha told the cow to make an elaborate feast for the king’s army and…

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Growing importance of Litigation PR


Reputation can be extremely fragile in this interconnected and 24*7 online world, brands can live or die by their reputation in this highly competitive environment. The value of reputation has increased much more than ever before especially considering the endless stream of corporate scandals. Trustworthiness is still is a big issue among consumers and hence we are living in a ‘Reputation Economy’, which suggests a marketplace where businesses and brands are rated, commented on, and judged based on reputation (rather than financial performance).

In this light, Litigation PR has become pivotal for any company/brand during the course of any legal dispute or adjudicatory processing so as to affect the outcome or its impact on the client’s overall reputation. Media: Traditional/Online are closely following and reporting about court cases, the legal issues and its possible impact on the brand in question. Media houses are allowed to factually report the cases as…

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Science of Pitching

pitching This hypothesis is borrowed from the retail industry, where retailers work on the concept called predictive analysis to be able to market their products by efficient consumer targeting. They study their consumers so minutely based on their buying pattern that they are capable of telling you what you might purchase next even before even you realizing it. Researchers in the retail industry while studying buying patterns of consumers uncovered that consumer preferred to buy products that they are already familiar with as compared to something they are not seen before. Researchers examined people’s brains as they shopped and tracked which neural regions are involved in comprehending aural stimuli. Shopping activates numerous areas of brain, including cortex, the thalamus and the superior parietal cortex. These areas are associated with pattern recognition and helping the brain decide which inputs to pay attention to and which to ignore.

The areas that get activated…

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Mobile Phones – the next big platform for Communications

We are all living a Mobile Life, sharing all important and less important moments of life through pictures, posts, likes and comments across social media platforms. Checking in to locations and sharing experiences of visiting a specific venue, food reviews and more, consumers have become media themselves. Mobile phone is becoming a content consumption machine. This presents a great opportunity for brands to reach out to the advocates, reward loyal customers who could propagate their brand.

Recent industry reports state that India has 51 million smart phone users which make up 17 % of all mobile users in urban India, even the figures for non-metro India stands at 13 percent. Of the total user base, increasing number of users are using internet through their mobile phones and the user base is projected to touch 243 million by June 2014, a year-on-year growth of 28 per cent as per IAMAI report.


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The Fine Art of Constructive Criticism

If you overdo it, you make enemies. If you avoid it too much, you become a pushover.

critic-1-1024x1000Often in your work life, you will come across people who either keep criticizing you for every small mistake/s without offering any solution to correct the mistakes or there are people who are at the butt of everyone’s criticism. Also there are chances that you unknowingly/knowingly have developed the knack of criticizing everything that comes your way. There are also situations where you want to criticize someone, it could be your boss or your co-worker but you are too sweet to confront them and suffer eternally.

One of the toughest parts of being an effective manager is communicating criticism, to your higher ups, colleagues or to your subordinates. If you’re too harsh, they’ll react emotionally and won’t hear you. If you’re too vague, they won’t hear the message. The first thing you want…

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The Editor’s point of view

At Adfactors PR, I recently had the opportunity to attend a workshop with the renowned ex journalist Shishir Joshi, who has worked with leading media institutions like The Indian Express, Nagpur Times, Hitavada,, NDTV, Aaj Tak and his last assignment was as a Group Editorial Director with MiD DAY. Shishir initiated an education initiative Journalism Mentor ( part of JM Foundation for Excellence in Journalism. And is currently the CEO at Bombay First – an initiative now in its 20th year to make the city a better place to live, work and invest in. It aims to serve the city with the best that private business can offer.

  1. Build a Non-Transactional Relationship: To begin with, identify editors from select publications which matter the most to your clients. Know more about them, their current role, recent articles written by them, style of writing, about their previous stint, what they like, their…

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