Part 2: How we can humanise PR
In the previous part of my blog, I touched on the importance of humanising our communication process in light of our new mandate to engage. How can we achieve this by transforming our approach to communicating with the media?
- Getting to know you: We need to learn more about the people we deal with on a regular basis by sensitively searching out common ground through LinkedIn, Instagram and other social media platforms. When done considerately, this can reveal shared hobbies, interests or backgrounds, sparking an excellent relationship from the word go.
- Eliminate impersonal communication: Let’s say goodbye to the BCC email once and for all and tailor our approach to every contact based on our understanding of their preferences, interests and personality. Take the time to customise your communication and send original emails to each individual.
- Face-to-face communication: We live in a digital world but you still can’t beat a face-to-face meeting. Don’t let your relationship be limited to your inbox or mobile phone – branch out and have the confidence to meet in person. Putting a face to a name is essential for establishing a human connection and building a relationship.
- Show respect: This should be obvious but is sometimes neglected. Showing respect for your media contacts involves honouring agreed deadlines, sending only newsworthy content, and maintaining a professional relationship by contacting them a reasonable amount at sensible times, and only with content that is relevant to their publication.
- Mutual benefits: A good relationship is a two-way street. In return for showing interest in our stories and publishing our content, we must give back by providing the media with market insights, quotes and reports that we believe could be helpful to them in their job. This will be much appreciated by them and create a mutually beneficial relationship.
At the end of the day, nobody likes receiving another standard email that has been sent to hundreds of other addresses. Let’s personalise our approaches to the media; it’s worth a shot to humanise our profession.
Khaled Abu Hishme is Account Director at Cicero & Bernay Public Relations. An independent PR agency headquartered in Dubai and offering new-age public relations consultancy to the UAE and across the MENA. |www.cbpr.me