Public Relations in a Post-COVID-19 World - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

Public Relations in a Post-COVID-19 World

The public relations industry doesn’t get much love or even respect from its journalistic counterparts. But the reality is, that when viewed objectively, public relations is an integral service that has great value in providing members of the media with important information critical to their reporting. Public relations agencies like Josh Nass PR might not be one of the behemoths but they are a company that is a part of the public relations industry’s boutique firms’ space.

This is a space that has only evolved in recent years; and with the Coronavirus pandemic having adversely affected the economic conditions of so many industries, including the PR industry, it is undoubtedly the case that the industry will continue seeing a growth in boutique firms. Such firms have a variety of advantages over some of their larger counterparts.

For one, with less volume of clients, they are able to offer their clients a level of dedication and attention to detail that simply none of the enormously sized public relations agencies can. For example, Josh Nass PR has a crisis management practice that has doubled in size over the last 12 months. The reason for this has to do with the valuable distinction in the way boutique firms treat their clients over some of their larger counterparts.

When a client is going through a crisis, they need to make sure the public relations agency and practitioner managing their account is someone they can rely on, and depend on access no matter the time of day. Crisis PR clients don’t care whether it’s their publicist’s wedding anniversary, child’s birthday, or any other familial or personal milestone. When the clients come calling, you better be alert, and ready at the wheel to take it. And you better provide strategic counsel and guidance that allows them the peace of mind that they’ll be able to navigate through the waters of their respective crisis.

Crises can be very challenging for businesses, no matter the industry they may be a part of. And during the Coronavirus pandemic, there was surely no exception to this rule. Businesses had to make sure they were communicating with clients in a way that was clear and consistent. But beyond their customer-bases, their other target audience is of equal if not even greater importance.

That audience are their staff and employees. During the crisis, countless businesses found themselves in a quandary where they needed to make swift decisions on the fly that would have an immediate impact on their businesses for better or for worse. What were the communications channels that they would employ in order to transmit these messages effectively to these two constituent audiences that are integral to their business’ success?

Did all businesses have communications programs already in place that enabled them to tackle these issues in a way that mitigated the damage that would have otherwise been caused? The answer is, unfortunately, no. Too many businesses wait until after a crisis to retain public relations counselors to help them with sage guidance and other tools to navigate the waters of a crisis.

Instead of being reactive, boutique PR firms like Josh Nass PR recommend a proactive approach that ensures regardless of the size of one’s business, they are prepared in a proactive manner to handle whatever crisis might come their way.

This is an approach that numerous public relations firms will recommend; but the reality is that the average business owner has not been educated about the significance of public relations, and why even while not recognizing its value, it can literally change the course of one’s business for better or for worse based on a news-cycle or an unexpected event of the magnitude of the Coronavirus pandemic.

There has a lot been said about the ways our government responded to this crisis. But the reality is that the onus is not merely on our government to manage crises and pandemics. Personal responsibility is also an important factor that needs to be highlighted. And in a public relations contexts, the COVID-19 pandemic, unfortunately, taught many businesses the hard way, of the need to be proactive about communicating with their business’ audiences.

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