With the start of a new year and a new decade, our past two columns have been all about PR trends that are likely to define a new era. This was in response to the letter of Deanna Y., who asked what PR practitioners can look forward to this year.
We began with lots of help from Melissa DiGianfilippo and Alexis Krisay of Serendipit Consulting through their PR Daily article, “2020 Vision: The top 5 emerging trends in marketing and PR.” They listed the trends as:
- An interactive content explosion or more engagement;
- New roles for chatbots, which they call “a new voice in consumer communications;”
- A socialmedia shake-up where they “expect to see more micro-influencers being favored over macro-influencers;”
- Brandstanding, which stems from deep authentic values shared by an organization and consumers over grandstanding, which is often about showing off and gimmickry; and
- Enhanced personalized brand experiences.
Last week, we got more assistance from Valerie Christopherson, the founder and CEO of Global Results Communications, an award-winning public relations firm, through her article “2020 Vision—6 PR trends and predictions for the new year,” which appeared in agilitypr.com. Her take on trends:
- Less reliance on the middleman;
- More entertainment to animate news;
- Success measured in Key Performance Indicators;
- Content as the new king;
- Attention earned ads; and
- Awareness creates demand for good corporate citizenship.
We complete our trendspotting this week with “PR Trends for 2020 to Keep You Ahead of the Game,” an article in the Forbes Agency Council Post by Darian Kovacs.
Darian, who is the founding partner at Jelly Digital Marketing and PR, has rounded up four trends which he foresees will be making an impact on PR strategies this coming year.
1 Advertorial buys will take a bigger piece of marketing budgets. “A good advertorial can help you achieve your goals and get you where you want to be,” Darian says, adding that these are “perfect opportunities to attract attention while providing trusted knowledge to readers.”
But what makes a good advertorial? These should make readers “feel a connection to your brand.” And it is key to study your audience—who are they and what do they want?
When writing an advertorial, “throw in details to really help consumers understand more about your product. Be persuasive and knowledgeable, and let them know you are a trusted source.”
2 This will be the Year of the Micro-Influencer. Like Melissa and Alexis, Darian believes that there will be a shift in the role of influencers. “You see influencers with large followings all the time,” he says, “but do they really have an impact on their followers?”
With this, he sees more brands getting on board with micro-influencers, who have been a focus for some time now as they are more within reach.”
Because they are more manageable, easier to narrow down, and willing to work alongside you, not for you, Darian says that “micro-influencers make it feel like a true partnership, which tends to help form long-term connections.”
Darian believes “micro-influencers are important for brands because they have built trust with niche audiences and can connect your brand to that audience. That makes it easier to narrow down the right influencer for the right task.”
3 More op-eds will be published. Darian describes a good op-ed as “a structured piece of writing backed up by accurate research.” Because they can help connect a business leader with their readers on a personal level, “these are one of the finest tools at our finger tips and can be great for helping articulate your message.”
With more readers wanting more of an authentic and personal connection, he sees op-eds as a “good way to reach your audience and pull them in while educating them on a specific topic.”
4 Listicles will garner consumers’ attention. A listicle is a piece of writing presented in the form of a list. With fewer readers able to stay focused and reading long articles, it makes it difficult to write articles for clients “unless you’re an expert at drawing the attention of the readers within the first three seconds.”
As “consumers tend to scan for main points and get bored if the correct information is not at their fingertips, Darian predicts “listicles will be coming back in full force within this next year, as they are the perfect opportunity to pull in readers just long enough to give them the information they are searching for.”
With that, it is important to “grab the attention of your readers with something short and sweet. Listicles are efficient, easy and informative. What else do you really need?”
With the PR world described as “life in the fast lane,” knowing these trends and what works best for you will help you cope with the changes in this fast-paced world.
PR Matters is a roundtable column by members of the local chapter of the United Kingdom-based International Public Relations Association (Ipra), the world’s premier association for senior professionals around the world. Millie F. Dizon, the senior vice president for Marketing and Communications of SM, is the former local chairman.
We are devoting a special column each month to answer the reader’s questions about public relations. Please send your comments and questions to email@example.com.
Image credits: Ssstocker | Dreamstime.com