Why learning from big brand PR can make anyone more famous

15 June 2018

Elvis Knight comes from doing ‘consumer’ PR for national and international brands and applying that same know-how to the fast-moving multi-channel communications and content opportunities now available to everyone. Working out how to get Tesco products, from frozen peas to joints of meat. written about for free every week in the national news pages is remarkably similar, it turns out, to developing a social media content strategy for a boutique hotel. Really, it’s true. Making several hundred short, cheap videos to promote small businesses across Britain for Yellow Pages’ online arm convinced us that video content remains a truly untapped way for small businesses to engage new customers. Carling lager and Zurich insurance turned out to need very similar consumer PR strategies. Weirdly. Try convincing the News of the World and the Guardian it’s actually worth spending quite a bit more of your hard-earned on BP’s premium fuels to get slightly lower consumption. Then do it again for the next five years. If you can get the Independent to run a double page spread on why middle class people should now holiday at Butlins, you can surely have a go at publicising any brand and any business; big, small, old, new, anywhere. How hard can it be…

‘PR with content!’ Thought you were all about straight talking!

7 June 2018


Before you ask, let’s just get one thing out of the way. And no, it’s not why we are called what we are called. It’s what it is we do. What on earth does ‘PR with content’ mean actually? I’ve spent my working life attempting to explain what ‘PR’ is. And now, just when everyone seems to think PR is either ‘really cool’ or ‘totally dead’, I find myself doing it all again with ‘content’. The C word has been in daily marketing speak for two decades, mainly in connection with stuff you see on websites. But now, content is a catch-all for pretty much any picture, film or piece of writing created with the intention of drawing attention to something, anywhere online, somehow or other. Everyone is frantic either creating their own or featuring other people’s content – or very likely both. So you could say that ‘PR’ (feel free to add your own definition) is now just one part of the great big content machine and just call it all Content. Which almost happened. Until I told a very experienced director of comms that I was starting a content sharing company and he gave me a very old fashioned look that said ‘I thought you did PR’ and ‘please don’t make me feel a mug by asking if I know what content is.’ Confession time at this point: online content that endlessly postulates the meaning of marketing terms like content is my all-time least favourite reading matter. So let’s just stop this now.