Whether writing a press release, an annual plan, or just a simple pitch – you’re always simply telling a story.
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Two major international brands—Dolce & Gabbana and Lenovo—screwed up big time in the last month. How each handled its crisis is a classic lesson in ‘how to’ and ‘how not to’ communicate after a misstep.
Spring is in the air, and so are significant changes at some of the most popular brands. These are not marginal changes where a press release and a few media hits will suffice to get out the message, though. They are major breaks from the branded past that require long-term communication strategies and a sustained effort by PR pros.
Kelly McGinnis became executive VP and CCO of Levi Strauss & Co. in 2013. The move came 18 months after Levi Strauss hit the reset button following years of no growth. From the get-go McGinnis—who reports directly to Levi’s CEO Chip Bergh—instituted four principles that have guided communications strategy and enhanced integration.
Unlike some audiences that brands and organizations cater to, influencers are not monolithic but are a loosely affiliated group of individuals who can have a pivotal influence on PR’s ability to drive conversation and spread the word. But getting people online to share information about your company’s products/services or values requires a different mindset than blasting a press release to a similar demographic or giving a presentation to like-minded people.
When PR takes a backseat to lead generation efforts in an organization, the strategic value of communication is masked behind a larger marketing umbrella. Don’t let this happen. PR needs to bridge what is a chronic disconnect and take its seat at the revenue table.