- Some influent people have said that newspapers could die in 5-10 years: what are your views on this and how does it affect “the brand” and your role as a communicator?
It rather depends on your definition of ‘newspaper’ as much as your interpretation of ‘dead’ – arguably, this prophecy has already come true. Certainly, the traditional news media is facing ontological challenges, with immense disruption to the business models and gatekeeper roles that have provided structure to the media economy for centuries. But we shouldn’t underestimate their crucial and continuing role as agenda-setters and framers. We are also, however, seeing the creation of new media paradigms, the rise of new players and an online media ecology with increasingly blurred lines between earned, owned, shared and paid. We are living through an era of immense change that presents an unprecedented opportunity to the brand (and the creative communicator) that can tell and elicit interesting, engaging stories adding value and variety rather than fluff and clutter to the emergent media environment. For the holistic communicator, there has truly never been a more exciting time to work in PR.
- If you had one recommendation for leveraging reputation management as a corporate asset what would it be?
Continuing to invest in the ‘reputation bank’ through responsible corporate citizenship and effective customer and stakeholder engagement remains key and with the social web, active management of reputation has never been more important. One single recommendation? That’s tough, and this is probably two... but investing your time to understand the broadest aspects of your business and apply a holistic reputational filter (assessing both opportunity and risk) to all that you see. Getting as close as you can to the executive board as you can also helps... but is that three...?
- What would your top three tips on driving creativity and innovative communications strategies be?
1. Always anchor your creativity in a product truth and with a clear objective in mind
2. Be creative for your consumers’ benefit as much as your own
3. Don’t be afraid to fail 20% of the time. Just make sure you fail in a useful way
- What session, other than your own, are you most looking forward to at Leaders In Communications?
You are pinning me down to a single choice again here... but I’m looking forward to learning if there was some secret social sauce behind Cancer Research UK’s brilliant #nomakeupselfie campaign. And talking of secret sauce, Guto Hari’s session on the travails of News International looks pretty unmissable too!