When I started in PR, we had clear channels of operation; broadcast, print and very little else. By today’s standards, it was reasonably two-dimensional. Now, it feels like our field of fire is four or even five-dimensional, requiring most of us to have eyes in the backs of our heads and ears to the ground 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The world may have progressed in the last year, but it has undoubtedly shrunk. B2B Tech PRs work with more global clients now than at any other time, requiring us to have an acute awareness of news both locally and internationally. As a result, we must go further and understand global trends, be clear on local and regional issues and cultural differences to serve our clients better.
Yet, for any industry, in any country, thinking about 2023 feels like an uphill struggle. For PRs, communicating the absolute authentic truth and watching for media opportunities before they even get here will be essential.
So, along with spotting opportunities for our clients before they arise and predicting the future in the industries, here are a few key elements to get a head start in 2023.
Let’s make one thing crystal clear: attention spans are getting shorter. Audiences don’t have the time to sift through great reams of text and content anymore, so enter the new phenomenon of moving visual action.
The humble business website shouldn’t just be a site that talks ‘at’ its audience. Today, websites should be all about the user experience. Businesses need to start taking the art of text to a whole new level and transform the ‘About Us’ page into a visual journey that can bring to life the backstory of a business, like a picture book that oozes colour, emotion, and ambition.
This new form of scrolling storytelling transports a spellbound audience through a winding road of unique discovery. The story then becomes immersive, responsive, and even interactive. What better way to tell your client’s story? But businesses shouldn’t leave this simply to a webpage; enterprises should use this journey to breathe life into their editorials, social media, and interviews, meaning PRs need to feed these new concepts into campaign planning.
AI will further enhance PR
Whether we like it or not, AI (artificial intelligence) will eventually creep further into public relations. Yet as professionals, we shouldn’t be sitting in a corner rocking over it. We have always known what AI is about – we’ve seen movies and read books – it enhances capabilities, it doesn’t take over. We should welcome the intelligence it brings to every industry, including PR.
Apart from maximising SEO strategies, guiding us to create better content, podcasts, and social posts, and enhancing our reach with a sharper focus on messaging the right audience at the right time, we can use AI-driven data to monitor our PR effectiveness more successfully.
So don’t think AI will somehow take value out of our beloved industry for a second. Quite the opposite; wouldn’t it be great if press releases were interactive, and our global messages could be translated into multiple languages faster and more aligned with the local culture? According to a recent report, McKinsey has predicted that AI will create up to $2.6 trillion in business value in sales and marketing alone. Integrating and accepting AI in PR can only result in profit for businesses across the board.
Visual PR will be in demand
Next year the way we digest content will shift as our audiences become more complex. We will see a shift with the need to showcase our messaging across multiple channels at any given time.
Clients will want their message increasingly visual across all forms. So, whether showcasing products or exploring services in action, our visual content will go further for our clients, maximising impact through engaging moving images and reaching new audiences.
Podcast popularity will increase
Also, with our lives becoming increasingly busy, we must digest information on the move. We will see the popularity of podcasts increase across consumer and industry audiences. This year, take up of podcasts on energy and the environment was around 22%, followed by business and finance with21%, which will only continue over the next two years. But what will be more interesting is how we use podcasts, moving away from the traditional Q&A format towards audible storytelling through thought leadership and press releases.
Conversation is key
At C8, one key factor we think is critical in 2023 is maintaining conversations with target audiences. Today, audiences want to be heard as much as they want to be engaged, so as PRs, we need to keep our clients in constant dialogue with their industry.
Since the pandemic, businesses have had to create a new language that speaks on a level with audiences. Gone are the days of ‘them and us,’ and the new theme is ‘we are in it together’. With an energy crisis and a recession projected to last longer than any other on the horizon, seeing businesses speak, understand, and engage across every channel will be more vital than ever in the coming year.
For more information about how C8 Consulting can help to create compelling campaigns and kick-start conversations for your business, or to understand more about the social and digital activities that we are undertaking for our clients please feel free to contact us.