As the economy falters in the grip of Covid19, one PR expert has advised industry professionals to be ready and waiting for the surge of calls once it is safe to trade once again.
Tina Clough, managing director of Leicestershire based Poppy-PR has been impacted like most by recent events, but is predicting asurge in demand once the virus has subsided, she said: “PR has really come into its own and has proven itself to be an invaluable commodity to those who are still able to trade. Sure, for those who cannot currently trade, PR is better off being put on the backburner until this terrible virus has subsided- but for those who can still function, there is no quicker route to market.
“Two of our clients are working within the food sector- one a bakery chain, and the other a provider of food packaging to the leading supermarkets. Both are experiencing an upturn for services, and without PR communicating those valuable ‘business asusual’ messages, you would be forgiven for thinking that they were locked down, short on staff or unable to deliver the usual levels of service.”
For Tina, the ability to adapt has seen many of those businesses capable of trading, with a new business model, fresh scope to take the business forward post crisis, and increased trade as a result
She continued: “We are finding that many businesses are now trading online for the first time- something that they may have considered previously but put on the backburner until the time was right. There is no time like the present in such circumstances! Some of our clients have also launched a delivery service (commonly seen in the food sector) and as a result, they are reaping the rewards.
“During the recession, I read an interesting article about how the businesses which chose to market themselves during such circumstances, saw the benefits of such for up to five years after the recession had ended- why you may ask? The answer is simple, as many of your competitors attempt to cut back on the marketing messages, it renders them invisible to their target audience. When your competitors are invisible, it allows the underdog (or those with a savvy mindset) to raise their brand to the next level, pretty much unchallenged.
“With many company’s launching new services much quicker than they may have done pre Covid19, there has been an increased requirement to tell the public about such developments. PR has become more valuable than ever before- especially social media.
Tina added: “The media have been listed as a key industry by The Government during this terrible time, and make no mistake, they are crying out for news. We have been inundated with requests for ‘positive’ Covid19 stories about community champions helping the vulnerable, and business owners helping others. We are also being asked for non-Covid19 news! Now is the time to give back, engage in those CSR initiatives to not only help those most in need, but to be seen as a responsible and a caring brand.”
When asked about her future predictions for the industry, Tina was quick to answer: “There will be a surge in requests for PR, marketing and social media services as brands seek to regain market position and get back on their feet.
“As an agency, we are using this time to make sure that we have all of our ducks in a row, to create news stories about us, to update the website and start planning our own PR strategies so that we can hit the ground running once Boris gives us all the green light.”
Tina Clough owns Leicestershire based PR agency, Poppy-PR for enquires please visit www.poppy-pr.co.uk