After reading a fun post on PR Examples of the top 20 campaigns of 2014 I thought it would be great to offer our predictions on what 2015 has in store for us PR junkies.
1. Bigger, better stunts and events
A PR stunt has always been a go-to technique to guarantee coverage and brand awareness for a client. Although I think there have been some really effective campaigns in 2014, in 2015 I think these will only get bigger and better. To stand out these days you have to integrate traditional and Digital PR techniques in order to maximise your reach and potential audience engagement.
One of my favourite stunts this year was ‘F**K the Poor’ a shock tactic campaign from a charity. This campaign was by the Pillion Trust and highlighted how angry people become when confronted with something as distasteful as a sandwich board saying ‘f**k the poor’, yet people didn’t look twice when they same board said “Help the Poor”.
I thought this was a simple yet effective campaign using shock tactics. This is a great example of traditional and Digital PR working in harmony to create shareable video for online coverage. I personally think this is much more engaging for the audience. As the video is also shareable it creates a two way conversation and allows discussion and consequently a wider reach for the campaign.
2. Listening and reacting on Social Media
Ever since the introduction of social media (particularly Twitter) we have been able to listen to consumers’ thoughts and have more immediate two-way conversations with them. This has been extremely useful from a PR point of view in order to react and has been done very well by a few different brands. In 2015, I think using social media behaviour trends over the past few years we will be able to predict consumer reactions to certain events in advance to be one step ahead of the news.
A great example of reacting and Newsjacking can be seen when Lidl responded to Sainsbury’s 50p challenge scandal with the brilliant advert shown below. This really stuck out in my mind as I thought it was a daring and witty reaction piece to Sainsbury’s mistake. In 2015 I think more brands should take this humorous approach to stand out in the market (especially supermarkets).
3. Social Media stunts
It’s needless to say that social is a crucial part of every PR campaign in this day and age. In 2014 I saw a few great examples of campaigns using social interactions with brands to create a really fun campaign.
I particularly liked the campaign run by Bird’s Eye who opened the world’s first pay by Instagram restaurant. Customers at Bird’s Eyes’ pop-up restaurant fittingly named “The Picture House” were able to pay by taking photos of their food and posting it online. I think in 2015 more campaigns will be socially led like this in order to create something interesting and engaging. I think more and more brands will be willing to push the boundaries with their PR tactics this year in order to remain competitive within the market.
As well as listening, reacting and engaging in social stunts in 2015, I think we will see much more paid advertising on social. Instagram and Snapchat in the past year have introduced advertisements to their channels competing with Facebook and Twitter. This will target the appropriate audience demographic in order to aid campaigns and also work independently.
4. Video Content
Over the past few years, YouTube alone has really exploded and Vloggers have become extremely popular in the world of PR. With this said, incorporating video content into PR campaigns is something I think will become much more common this year. As we all know PR is much more than just a press release and I think that video content will enable us to engage with our audiences on another level in 2015.
A future example to watch out for is Marriott International who announced in November that they had signed up YouTuber’s including the UK’s JacksGap. They will be set with the task of creating content to appeal to the next generation of travellers.
They have been working on The Marriot Reward a year of surprises in 2014. These are a series of monthly webisodes. Each episode features a celebrity giving the “surprise of a lifetime” to communities across the world.
The Los Angeles Clippers star, Jordan Farmar can be seen in the first webisode shown below.
To conclude, I think a lot is to come over the next year in terms of PR and we will see campaigns develop more creative and interesting ways to engage with their audience. I look forward to seeing these progress and working on campaigns with our own clients. One thing is for sure, traditional and Digital PR will become much more integrated as more and more of our lives move online.