How to turn a mosquito into a PR elephant

How to turn a mosquito into a PR elephant

How to turn a mosquito into a PR elephant 1920 1268 Dr. Matthias Wühle

By its very nature, the public relations work of companies revolves first and foremost around themselves, i.e. the focus of reporting is on their own entrepreneurial decisions such as expansions, cooperations, personnel decisions and, of course, product announcements. The news value is based on the impact for the stakeholders: Are shareholders affected? Will jobs be created or destroyed? Are the products innovative? Good, if this is the case. In the grey reality, however, many reports do not reach the necessary level of coverage and it often remains a matter of a few publications in relevant specialist and special media.

In principle, that doesn’t have to be bad. If you want to concentrate your media work on ensuring that your statements are reproduced correctly and thus reach a well-assorted circle of recipients, then this minimal strategy will do you good and you can make your media impact manageable and controllable.

However, there are also good reasons for extending this radius: First of all, there would be the brand value of the company, into which good press relations always pay. A well-known and positively charged brand serves, among other things, to enforce higher price ranges on the markets, to erect market entry barriers for competitors, to increase customer loyalty and attractiveness for employees and applicants, and finally it also has a positive effect on the price of one’s own securities – if any. But also in stakeholder communication, a broad perception of the company ensures better visibility and thus serves as a foundation for asserting one’s own claims against politicians and regulators, customers, suppliers or local residents.

The best way to raise the level of communication to a higher level is to use macro events. These events constantly happen around us and form the media environment in which the company is embedded. These can be elections in important countries, political decisions of great significance, central bank statements on interest rate developments, scientific studies and survey results, the publication of macroeconomic data, new laws and regulations, conflicts of any kind or even international conferences, symposia and symposia. Every company is more or less directly or indirectly affected by events and should therefore have an opinion on them. For the media these opinions are interesting as representatives of the economy, as industry representatives, as employers or as directly affected persons in principle.

Especially in the run-up to planned events such as conferences or elections, companies can fulfil an important social mandate in order to shed light on the topics to be negotiated from this perspective and thus initiate a debate. Even as a result of certain decisions, company comments are gratefully received by the media.

Seven tips for successful macro event commenting:

  1. Value of the quotation giver: the higher the position of the quotation giver, the more likely an impression is to be made
  2. Speed: Events should be commented on the same day. These should be well prepared and coordinated in advance.
  3. Events cast their shadows ahead. About a week before, this provides an ideal environment for comments.
  4. The spice lies in the brevity: As a rule, a few sentences suffice.
  5. Expressiveness: Those who manage to formulate their comments in a pointed way are more likely to find the interest of the media.
  6. No self-promotion: your own company and your own products should take a back seat here. The decisive factor is the expertise of the citation provider alone.
  7. One, maximum two spokespersons of the company. These should not change too often.

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