• The Cumming furore has, inevitably, given rise to some humorous reaction on social media. We liked this one in particular, which gives a nod to another PRWeek favourite...
• From ‘poorly polishing a turd’ to ‘a lesson in self preservation’ - PR chiefs have reacted to the now infamous Dominic Cummings press conference.
• In non-Cummings news, new research suggests the public want brands to move 'beyond crisis' and be more 'playful'.
• Back to Dom, and has the Government’s decision to back Cummings ‘trashed’ its own public health message? Five public health and healthcare agency comms professionals give their views.
• Downing Street's apparent truce with the media is in tatters this week, after it reverted to selective briefing of media outlets and was criticised for confused messages in Boris Johnson's statement on Sunday - how will this affect its comms on COVID-19, our PRWeek analysis asks.
• 'Fewer redundancies, pay cuts and performance declines in PR' – a comprehensive new study on business performance and staffing has found that, among the marcomms disciplines, comms agency leaders are the least pessimistic about the effect of COVID-19.
• A growing numbers of PR professionals around the world have taken advantage of the PRCA’s new support service designed to help communications leaders through the COVID-19 crisis. The support service – which is freely available to all PR professionals around the world – has provided consultations to scores of professionals. Check it out.
• Comms is a secret superpower world leaders can use (or misuse) during the COVID-19 crisis, argues Jessica Duncanson.
• What do a vicar, a tapas bar in Swindon and fearsome political journalist Andrew Neil have in common? Don't worry, it's not an off-colour joke, it's PRWeek's 'Top of the Month' on Doncaster Council's handling of comms during the pandemic.
• In defence of the press [during coronavirus]: You get the media you’re willing to pay for. A comment piece by PR pro at BCW (and former hack) Steve Hawkes.
• Despite many social-media stars seeing their income hit by the COVID-19 crisis, industry experts see this as a golden age of influencer marketing – and the long-term impact could be substantial.
• PRs: stop giving your services away to companies for free and volunteer instead, writes Mary Glazkova, vice president of PR and comms at Wheely
• Creative Hits & Misses of the Week – Will Holloway, deputy creative director at Fever, offers his take on the best and worst creative campaigns of the past seven days.
• "A terrible idea." That's what our commentator today thinks of PR and marketing folks offering free advice to retain clients’ loyalty and attract new customers. Find out why in Wheely VP of PR and comms Mary Glazkova's piece here.
• PR agencies have reported an unexpected phenomenon while working in self-isolation – teams are getting closer to each other despite the distance. PRWeek speaks to agency leaders and a behavioural scientist to find out why this is happening and whether it will be sustainable.
• Engaged employees are crucial for the long-term health of organisations so how do you communicate well with your furloughed staff?
• Nearly two-thirds of PR agencies plan to furlough staff and half are planning redundancies as the coronavirus crisis bites, a new study has revealed. Click here for more findings.
• WPP's CEO is making redundancies but says China has shown the recovery 'can be quick'. Mark Read has said he is "very cautious" about the pace of any recovery in the second half of 2020, partly because of the risk of a second spike in coronavirus cases in some parts of the world. Check out his extensive interview here.
• Children's book brand Ladybird is launching a nice campaign to help children share reading time with family members they can't see during the coronavirus lockdown.
• Behavioural science has come of age in the time of COVID-19, writes Claire Gillis, CEO at WPP Health.
• In its Q1 trading update this morning, WPP reported a 1.4 per cent fall in like-for-like revenue (excluding pass-through costs) in its PR division in the quarter, with a steeper decline in March as the coronavirus crisis deepened. However, the Burson Cohn & Wolfe, Hill+Knowlton Strategies and Finsbury owner said there was "strong demand for some of our specialist PR services". WPP also outlined more cost-cutting measures.
• PRWeek has announced the winners in its Best Places to Work Awards 2020. We strongly recommend reading the profiles to see how the industry's top employers have adapted their workplace practices following the switch to home-working. Congratulations to all the winners.
• The Healthcare Communications Association has launched a website to enable members to volunteer their services to the NHS and health charities.
• PR agency Citizen Relations has changed its logo with the coronavirus in mind, flipping the 'C' shape on its side to reveal a rainbow and the 'stay at home' message.
• PRWeek has today revealed its annual Top 150 Consultancies list, alongside an in-depth analysis that highlights how the PR industry performed strongly in 2019, before the COVID-19 crisis hit.
• ‘Never let a good crisis go to waste’ is a frequently heard business maxim. Investing in PR today can position your business to thrive tomorrow, writes Phil Hall at PHA Group.
• What type of stories should brands be telling in the COVID-19 'new normal'? A comment piece from Samantha Gunn is senior creative producer at Weber Shandwick.
• The hospitality industry must be ready to ”live with coronavirus” for the foreseeable future, requiring new operating models and communications strategies, according to a food and drink comms expert. Check out the latest edition of The PR Show podcast here.