PR trends to look out for in 2018

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As the year draws to a close, Molokini’s PR experts are looking ahead to 2018’s PR trends.

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But first, what were the top PR trends this year?

Seeking quality content

Every year someone somewhere predicts that ‘PR is dead’, or at least on its last legs. However, we’ve reached the end of 2017 and PR is still alive and kicking! Far from seeing PR dry up, a key PR trends of 2017 was the tidal wave of content being produced.  In the online age, the media is moving ever faster, meaning that original, quality PR content, supported by excellent imagery, is actually more in demand than ever before. Which brings us on to our second trend…

Thought leadership contributions

Not only is the churn of news getting speedier, but there are fewer journalists to populate the news pages than there were a few years ago. In 2017, PR professionals saw greater demand for contributor marketing, such as thought leadership features and authority articles to support journalists in filling the gaps with relevant, quality news content.

Influencer marketing

Influencer marketing is not a new concept, but one which by 2017 had entered the consciousness of marketers, and many PR clients.  As engaging influencers to spread PR messages, particularly online, became part of many PR strategies in recent years, the line between paid for and earned content were ever more blurred in 2017, reiterating the need for a more integrated marketing approach in many businesses.

Which brings us neatly on to the PR trends we can expect to see in 2018.

Content marketing

Rather than existing in silos, PR and digital marketing continue to move closer together.  More businesses will seek an integrated content marketing strategy that not only communicates brand messages via PR, but uses PR to support SEO. PR will also be the lead content source in many marketing plans, providing the basis of interesting social media content and downloadable or shareable content like video and infographics.

Qualitative measurement

Although the activity will become more cohesive, the way that PR is measured will be differentiated from other marketing disciplines.  Whereas content marketing success is generally reported with quantitative measures, such as clicks and downloads, these aren’t relevant for PR.  In 2018, expect to see more businesses adopting meaningful, qualitative PR measurement tactics with success tied to the achievement of business objectives, or even customer and public behavioural change.

Real news in demand

Much like in 2017, with fewer journalists and increased pressure to deliver news content quickly, the media will lean more on PR.  However, this goes beyond filling column inches.  With an economy of fake news bombarding both on and offline media, reputable journalists are keen to protect their editorial reputation. As such, in 2018 they will be looking to PR professionals with a strong reputation in specific industries to provide genuine, trusted and high-quality news releases that they can publish without fear of reprimand.  Stories with proof and evidence to support the marketing messages will enjoy greater success.

There is no way to be certain of what lies ahead for PR as we approach the 2020s, but undoubtedly maintaining strong relationships with media, and creating well-constructed, punchy press releases will remain as important as ever for delivering a high-quality PR strategy.

No matter what 2018 throws at us, Molokini’s experienced PR team have the up-to-date knowledge and skills to support your brand with standalone PR campaigns, integrated content marketing strategies and more.

Get in touch to find out more about the right Molokini marketing services for your business needs.