Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Global PR Summit: integration; narrative; earned attention

Proctor & Gamble's (@ProctorGamble) Marc Pritchard talked today in Miami at the Global PR Summit (#PRSummit) about the power of earned attention.

What struck me was this: not the huge success P&G had with their Olympic "Mom" campaign, not the power of narrative, not the fact that more than half their impressions came from earned media but that NONE of this is new.

What is new is the channels (social) and the clarity of the 'take-home' for conference attendees.

That take-out is this:
1.     Brand and event assets used to deliver 'earned' attention rather than 'paid' attention are MORE effective
2.     The whole narrative was led by a PR firm not an ad agency
3.     The narrative determined thecampaign strategy and elements  - through the line, not just below the line

My own experience running AMP's Olympic and Torch Relay communication campaigns (circa 1998-2000) mirrors exactly the P&G message albeit on a much smaller scale:
  • Tell an authentic story and one that resonates with consumers
  • The more integrated, the more effective the campaign
  • Writing that story allows communication strategists and those charged with action to take the narrative into strategy, planning and execution

Marc's final exhortation to those on the "agency side" (consulting we prefer to call it!) was this: "Push us (clients) to make us think about the audience we need to reach – and push us about how to reach them with authenticity and brilliant story telling".

 I am attending the Global PR Summit today and tomorrow in Miami on behalf of BlueChip Communication. For more info about any of the posts please contact us.

Global PR Summit: industry at a cross roads

An industry at a cross roads was the rallying cry from Paul Holmes as he opened the Global PR Summit today in Miami.

With US attendee numbers down due to Hurricane Sandy, Holmes addressed a more international audience of PR leaders than expected – about challenge & opportunity, about continual misconceptions of PR and of a future in which PR is becoming more central to brand building and corporate success.

Personally I'm fast becoming a PR-bear. By that I mean that when I look around I fear for our future with so little notable thought leadership globally. Some of the best thinking about our so called profession seems to come form those outside the actual industry – marketers, business leaders and social media experts in particular. And those pundits would suggest our biggest challenges are this:
  1. Measurement
  2. Integration with other forms of communication or campaign elements 
  3. Social media 
To be fair all three of things, if right, are opportunities not just challenges, as Holmes suggested at the outset. But the intelligent debate isn't coming from the PR folk – maybe we're just too close to it.

It's the first time an event like this has been run, and while numbers were down, registrations exceeded all expectations. Why? In part because Holmes has been successful, through the Sabre Awards and The Holmes Report, in broadening the geographic footprint of the Holmes Report brand and its associated events.

I'm tweeting from the event using the conference hashtag of #PRSummit today/tonight (Wednesday AM AEDST) and tomorrow. Blogs will be posted here with the best of the thinking from the conference.