In the run-up to the Echelon Asia Summit 2023, our experts Prayaank Gupta and Daniel Tan held two dedicated workshops, discussing current issues and fielding questions from startups and investors. The conversation turned around how firms can increase their visibility with the media and other stakeholders, and at the same time achieve their business objectives, such as gaining more customers or building an employer brand.
Here are some of the main takeaways from the workshop.
—Why do we need PR? Firms need to get the message out. This can be through one-way communication, where they publish their content on a website or through ads. PR offers two-way communication, allowing companies to build a channel with the media. This is typically more cost-effective but has a possible downside in that you can’t always control the narrative. On the upside, however, this form of communication is more impartial and important for credibility building.
—When contacting the media, start with the “WHY?” Why should people care about your brand? When we engage with the media, two fundamental questions need to be asked: “Why me?” and “Why now?” Communicators should always think about the other party and what they can gain out of this. Also, think about how to build a consistent narrative that people can get into. Consistency and precision are essential for the value proposition to be clearly understood.
—The key to a successful comms campaign is not what you deliver, but what they take away. Communicators should keep their messages tight to areas that are easy for people to recall, that are concise and easy to deliver. What are the main things that form the basis of the organisation that you want people to remember? “We are…” and “we do…” are often the most difficult to define. We need to create them in a way that employees and other advocates can describe the company in a consistent manner.
—A press release is just one tool among many. A media release is the summary of facts around an announcement. It’s just one possible tactic. PR professionals can produce and use many other ways to communicate, including news pitches, interviews and roundtables, op-eds and white papers.
—Any kind of communication activity needs to drive a business outcome. Whether the objective is finding investors, launching a new fund or expanding into new markets, any communication effort involves always a business objective. Without that, your PR is just for the sake of vanity. Business outcomes are measurable: there’s an increase in traffic to your website, and potential investors start calling.
Companies further need to keep in mind that strategic communications is no longer just media relations. Your messaging needs to consider a holistic picture that includes other stakeholders, such as government, shareholders, consumers and the local community. Contact us if you need help with your outreach.
Here are some basic tips to follow…