By Katie Brenneman
Public Relations is part of any business. While every company that exists relies on interacting with people, at some point, the matter of presenting the company accurately and positively comes into play.
That’s the goal of PR – to build awareness and spread an organization’s narrative in a positive light. Just so, there are many aspects of an organization’s reputation that hinges on the way PR reps present the narrative, right down to how they are dressed.
Let’s dive into some of the most important considerations for PR professionals to keep in mind as they represent their brand.
Avoid Fast Fashion
It’s becoming more prevalent and expected that modern businesses are steering their focus on greener initiatives and environmental preservation efforts.
At the same time, more companies are experiencing the ramifications of mass-produced products flooding the market.
Take the fashion industry, for example. Many clothing companies will commission large quantities of clothing to be mass-produced, only for most of it to be discarded once it rotates out of season. This is catching the public eye as contributing to overabundant waste and harm to the environment due to how much clothing is being rapidly produced and then quickly thrown away.
While this can apply to more than just the fashion industry, it’s important for PR reps to be mindful that they aren’t overtly contributing to the machine that much of their audience might take issue with, such as wearing clothing by brands that are known for using labor mills.
When we think of the term “fair trade,” that should be the first and foremost concern for a PR rep when selecting their outerwear and their appearance.
Dress to Impress
On the topic of fashion, however, we don’t mean to suggest that a PR rep shouldn’t make a point to dress well.
It’s a fair rule of thumb that PR reps should make a point to maintain their outward appearance since they are the main reflection of their organization.
But let’s consider the overarching strategy PR reps should tackle when assembling their appearance.
They should take into account the audience that they’re aiming to captivate and appeal to their patterns of interest.
It’s worth maintaining a grain of your own personality at the same time, but putting forth the effort to reflect the interests of your audience will ultimately resonate with them and yield a good response.
Appearance on Social Media
PR professionals should be ready to embrace social media in every mode they can, from written content, to images, and video.
Since they’re often the face of their company in the public eye, there will often come a certain expectation that they’re involved with social platforms, and for good reason.
Social media can be the staging area where the organization’s narrative can be fostered and developed. PR reps should be able to leverage as many facets of social media to build their brand’s exposure and especially control what’s being said about their brand.
The last few years have seen the platform TikTok blow up in popularity with millennials and Gen Z users. This is an open door for many PR reps to take advantage of since it’s a huge source of driving viral videos.
The nature of TikTok is in its short-form videos, making the ease of entry into the medium fairly approachable for many. PR personnel should consider what influencers they could partner with or how they can produce their own meaningful content to appeal to the demographics on the platform.
TikTok thrives in curating topical content for users that show interest in specific categories of media, so producing focused amounts of content informed by your vertical is essential to building a reliable following on TikTok.
The light at the end of the tunnel with social media is the exponential growth of followers that comes with striking gold that is viral content.
Be Cautious of Greenwashing
If you’ve never heard the term “greenwashing” before, it’s essentially the overstatement or exaggeration of how a company’s methodology, procedures, initiatives, or consumption of resources is clean and green, with little or no impact on the environment.
Scrutinous eyes with astuteness on green initiatives will read right through a PR rep’s oversimplification or generalization of their “efforts,” whether they exist in part or not at all.
Take intense care not to misrepresent the environmental impact of procedures conducted by your brand. If you misspeak and present it in a particular light that doesn’t reflect reality, it can come back to bite you, damaging not only your own reputation but also the reputation of your brand.
Well, there you have it. A few of the top considerations to be wary of as a PR representative.
The last nugget we’ll leave you with is the goal of staying genuine in all that you do and say. People can detect falseness in demeanor and character sooner or later, so make sure you’re partnered with a brand that you truly believe in.
Every organization can use improvement, so it’s important to highlight how you are growing and getting better as a group. Don’t be afraid of owning your weaknesses, but be sure to couple them with an expression of how proud your company is to be doing what it’s doing.
Honesty is, above all, the most effective way of gaining the trust of your audience!