So which is it? Audiences, publics, stakeholders… or tribes?

We're no longer talking to passive audiences.

We’re no longer talking to passive audiences.

Whether you are studying PR or work in the field you know that we talk about audiences, publics and stakeholders depending on whether we’re dealing with corporate or consumer PR, on what our companies calls them or on what we think sounds better at any given time. However, even though we tend to use these words interchangeably, this isn’t a “you say potato I say potato” situation. In truth, each one of these words means something slightly different and has different connotations. What’s the one thing they have in common? To some extent, they all focus on organizations and not just on the people they refer to which is why to complicate things even more, some experts are beginning to talk about tribes. Confusing, isn’t it? Not really. Each term is actually quite easy to define: Continue reading

Nestlé proves CSR can give your company a “Good Life”

Have you ever wondered where your coffee comes from? (Picture courtesy of Nestlé)

Have you ever wondered where your coffee comes from? (Picture courtesy of Nestlé)

Have you noticed that more and more people seem to be walking around carrying cups of coffee in their hands? Whether they’ve stopped by Starbucks, their local cafe or have made it at home, coffee cups seem to have become the ultimate accessory for both men and women.

I don’t know whether this is due to the fact that people lead such hectic lives that they just don’t have time to sit down for their coffee, or whether they are drinking more of it than they used to. What statistics do show, however, is that there is a good chance that the coffee they’re drinking is made by Nestlé, as 5,500 cups of Nescafé alone are drunk every second.

As the world’s leading nutrition, health and wellness company, Nestlé’s motto of “Good Food, Good Life” has lead them to be one of the world’s most profitable corporations. However, things weren’t always so good. Continue reading

Keep calm and carry on. 10 steps to creating your own app.

keep-calm-there-s-an-app-for-that-1Unless you’ve been living under a rock or on a different planet, you already know that social media is considered to be the most revolutionary, life-changing thing to hit PR in 20 years.  It may have taken you a while to accept this fact, a little longer to start using social platforms for PR and are probably just now getting comfortable with your corporate blog, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube sites. Good for you!

I hate to break it to you, but once again it’s time for you to innovate, put your creative thinking caps on and learn something new. This time around, the new challenge is to create apps. Yes, I’m freaked out too. But what I’ve learned might help you. Continue reading

And now we have horseballs…

Ikea meatballs have also been found to contain traces of horse meat.

Ikea meatballs have also been found to contain traces of horse meat.

Bad news for all of us who are (were) Ikea meatball lovers. The Swedish company has had to withdraw this famous product from 21 European countries after officials in the Czech Republic found traces of horse DNA in a bag labelled as beef and pork. This is just the latest development in a series of scandals which have involved meat products sold by well-known brands such as Tesco, Findus, Birds Eye and Nestle. As consumers, we must ask ourselves whether we can trust the information on these products’ packaging. As PR practitioners we have to wonder… Were these companies too busy thinking about broader Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) tactics to worry about their supply chains? Continue reading

Debate about ethical PR. Leave your boxing gloves at home, please!

Is there such a thing as ethical PR?

Is there such a thing as ethical PR?

I recently took part in a debate titled “The Only way to practice ethical PR is to work for the not for profit sector. Everything else is just corporate, political or consumer propaganda”. No doubt about it: this is quite a radical statement. As luck would have it, two colleagues and I wound up defending it…reluctantly, I might add. No self-respecting PR practitioner would agree with such a thing. Or would they?

Please note that we started off by having a show of hands which quickly showed none of the attendees were on our side and that we actually managed to come up with some pretty convincing arguments. Would we manage to convince anyone to support us?  Continue reading

Humble pie, coming right up!

P&G's special Olympic logo for London 2012.

P&G’s special Olympic logo for London 2012.

I love pies. And cakes. But no matter how hard I try, I still haven’t quite aquired a taste for Humble Pie. It’s tough when you have to admit that you were wrong about something or, even worse, that somebody else was right. But sometimes there’s no getting around it and when that happens it’s best to put on a big smile, learn your lesson and make the best of it. And that’s exactly what Procter and Gamble has done. After years and years of doing things “the P&G way” they’ve decided to completely change their branding strategy and, having had a nice big piece of humble pie, are falling into line with the competition. But who the heck is P&G and why is this such a big deal? Continue reading