In 2022, public relations professionals are really an extension of every core function of their client's business. While typically reporting into marketing, PR is more closely tied to human resources, finance, and operational leadership than people think. The role of the PR professional is to expose the authentic heart of the brand to the world.
Because it is harder than ever to reach people through earned media, it makes more and more sense for PR to own paid marketing efforts like print and digital ad management, affiliate marketing and influencer relations to drive consistent results and to leverage earned media opportunities. Poor internal communication is one of the leading causes of negative company culture and subsequently press. PR can have an important role in growing corporate culture and employee pride. An educated and included workforce, through consistent internal comms, is also more loyal and evangelizing. That energy spills into the public realm and the media pick up on it too. It’s no longer enough for a PR team to be focused solely on corporate or consumer communications because if PR isn’t in the know, it’s difficult to manage the public message. At the end of the day, PR in 2022 will be significantly more influential as it takes on more expansive roles.
But, at the heart of it, authenticity must reign above all else. Brands must be themselves, walk their walk, and carve out their niche. Don’t try to be someone else, no matter how successful that someone seems to be. Moving from a place of authenticity attracts the right customers and the right employees; it’s a long-term, ongoing strategy that every brand must soul-search and execute with gusto.