Published on January 3, 2017
1. AURATALKHELPINGSMESSTANDOUT PicturebyLauraSutherlandinGlasgow Issue no. 4
2. EDITOR'S NOTE E D I T O R - I N - C H I E F WelcometothefourthissueofAuraTalk. InScotlandwe'vehadaboutthreeweeksofsunshine,butweknowthesouthofEnglandhas hadgloriousweatherforweeks!We'renotjealousatall,honest! We'vehadaverybusysummerwiththePRFestival,WestEndFestival,TheBigLunch,lotsof newbusinessactivity,myusualblogpostsandgettingtogripswithwhattherestoftheyearhas instore.Ilaunchedmyownbloglauramsutherland.comtoo- youshouldsignuptofollowit. Thisissuetakesalookbackatthelastmonthortwoandwelookatwhatyouneedtobedoing topreparewintercampaignsandwhatnewtoolsareavailabletousetohelpyou. AuraTalkhashelpedclientsandcolleaguesalike,givingthemtipsonwhattodoandhowtogo aboutit.PRisnotsomethingwesuggestyoudoyourselfifyou'renotexperiencedandskilled. Gettheexpertsinvolved- it'llsaveyoutime,moneyandgetyoueffectiveresults. AbitofnewsfromAura,Laura'sblogpostshavebeencountedinthetop25femalePRcareer adviceblogs! LaurahasalsobeeninvitedtojointheBoardoftheScottishCommunicator's Network,helpingbridgethegapbetweenpublicandprivatesectorsinPRandcomms. Enjoythisissueandhopetotalksoon. W W W . A U R A - P R . C O M Laura Sutherland
3. Images: Stewart Attwood #PRFest
4. NEWS... in brief Aura has been handed the contract to launch Therapie Clinic in Scotland. Two clinics will open in Edinburgh and Glasgow in October. Therapie has 15 clinics in Ireland and the £2million investment in the Scottish launch will see the start of Therapie's expansion across the UK. www.therapieclinic.co.uk Aura has worked with the International Aspirin Foundation to develop a strategy to raise awareness of the benefits of aspirin. In September, Aura will head to London to the Senior Science Awards working to raise awareness of the award and winner. www.aspirin-foundation.com AurahasworkedwiththeWestEndFestival forthelastfiveyearshelpingengagethe publicwithitsJunefestivalandforthelasttwo years,TheElectricGardens.Thiswinter,Aura willhelplaunchanewinitiative- atorchlight paradetakingplaceon26November. www.westendfestival.co.uk Laurahascommitedsignificanttimeinthelastsixyearstothe developmentofthePRindustryandindeedpractitioners.Asa formerBoardDirectorandcurrentCouncilmember,Laurawillstandin theupcomingCIPRCouncilelections,lookingtosecureaseatfor 2017foratwo-yearterm.VotingstartsonMonday,12September! www.cipr.co.uk
5. Aura worked with The Big Lunch in Scotland, to help raise awareness and encourage sign-up of communities across Scotland, to take part in The Big Lunch, which was held on 12 June. Apparently Dundee was the 'warmest' city in Scotland, with many communities regularly eating meals with friends, family and neighbours. Thanks to our three helpers for posing for media pictures at Sighthill, Glasgow!
6. Summer intern, Lesley Clark, tells you what it's like to be an Aura intern... Today marks my last day as a PR intern in the Aura office. My notepad is full, my brain packed to the brim with new information. I’m reflecting on how much I’ve had the opportunity to learn in the short space of four weeks. I hope by sharing my experience, it can offer a little insight into day-to-day life as a PR intern. Here’s a snapshot of what I’ve been up to this month… #1 ‘Same task, different day’ doesn’t apply in PR – each day is different For many, the idea of an internship conjures up bleak thoughts. Perfecting coffee making, stapling ‘til your heart’s content and pretending to look busy. Not at Aura, and thank goodness! I’d been a PR intern an hour and already Laura had introduced me to a new health and beauty client proposal. She asked I pull together data sets from national publications. It soon became clear that finding this kind of information requires assertive, clear and concise communication with publications to get fast and relevant results. This brief allowed me to switch roles. I went from a consumer to someone actually seeing the ins and outs of the process of selecting the right publication for a campaign. The importance of selecting options which will gain the most engagement became clear. It surprised me that many national publications could not supply relevant data. Geo- targeting Scottish audiences was outlined as a key priority for this client. It was, for that reason, essential to select publication options which would be measurable.
7. #2 Paid, earned, shared, owned media – the importance of combining all four The PESO model, paid, earned, shared and owned media, something that fluttered around once or twice during my marketing lectures. For something so important, it wasn’t given much thought. Working at Aura has emphasised how crucial this model is in succeeding within PR and communications. The industry moves faster than you have time to realise you’re actually moving. Adopting PESO is essential to keep up with the race and to demonstrate return of investment (ROI). One clear piece of advice I’ve had working as a PR intern at Aura is that creating valuable, relevant content is vital to the success of any engagement. Although the PESO model begins with ‘paid’, this does not need to be the key starting point in engaging target audiences. My time as a PR Intern here has emphasised that media and communications cannot be approached as a linear process, but instead one which requires a combination of elements of the PESO model and most importantly, a willingness to try new things. PESO model W W W . A U R A - P R . C O M
8. #3 Creating a PR tool-kit Before working at Aura, my PR tool-kit was near enough empty. I had a few ideas about media tools but didn’t have much experience putting them into practise. There are so many other resources available to assist with working day-to-day. Here are a couple I’ve been introduced to… – Canva The power of visual marketing is more significant than ever before within the PR industry. Laura introduced me to Canva. It’s a visualisation tool which provides a massive amount of resourcespr intern Canva . There are free images, templates, fonts & photos which can help to create many different infographics for media purposes. I have seen first- hand, the potential for a blog post to go from a non-engaging mish-mash of text, to a piece of content which looks bright and well-structured. This makes the reader genuinely want to carry on reading past the first paragraph and it’s all thanks to Canva. – Hemingway Editor My last written exam was in April and I’ve been sunning myself abroad for the majority of the summer. So, I think it’s safe to say my writing skills are a little on the rusty side. When Laura asked me to put together my first blog for the Aura website, she suggested I make use of the Hemingway Editor. It’s a tool which helps writers to structure their ideas into an easily readable format – think spellchecker, but for style. The app highlights where your writing is too dense, disorganised and needs a bit of attention. For a self-confessed waffler like me, this tool has been incredibly useful and I highly recommended it. Click here to give it a go… #4 Be a sponge! pr internIf you want to learn you have to be willing to ask questions, and loads of them. Make mistakes, but learn from them fast. The ability to take constructive criticism well will help too. BE A SPONGE! Personally, I learn best by being chucked in at the deep end. My project briefs were succinct for a reason – so that it was a learning process. All too often, throughout academia in particular, we become horses lead to water. This experience has given me the opportunity to learn as I go, it has encouraged me to ask questions. One of the briefs given to me was to help in creating a corporate sales strategy for an events venue client. I compiled a document which included both competitor analysis as well as a strategy.
9. This was designed to look at the sales process as a customer journey. Though the document included images throughout, with the intention of appealing to the reader, it became clear after consulting with Laura that although in some cases this can add to the value of content, when it comes to the nitty gritty, sometimes it’s best to stick to text in order to keep things concise. Without trying and testing different formats, I wouldn’t have been able to learn from my mistakes. So, how’s it been? Four weeks ago, I drove into work as a new PR intern, not quite knowing what to expect. Frankly I felt a bit like I was starting secondary school all over again, as the ‘newbie’. Luckily, my time here has been anything but as scary as school. I’ve had an encouraging, dedicated mentor with a genuine interest in challenging me professionally and shaking up the PR industry. My time at Aura has been jam-packed. I’ve explored digital marketing, data analysis, PR best practice, crisis communication and most importantly, how to best conduct myself as a professional in the industry. One-on-one interaction has been invaluable. I can’t thank Laura enough for offering me this opportunity and I’m excited for new ventures to come. It’ll be interesting to put what I’ve learned into practice! Four of Aura's favourite summer PR tools #1 Instagram Now with an even better platform, easy to use and reaching anyone, anywhere, Instagram has developed from just a selfie sharing platform into a platform where people can find anything of interest to them in a real- life way. It’s authentic, as all content should be! #2 Tweetsmap A paid-for platform which looks into your audience and helps understand who you follow and who follows you. For £20 can look at people’s locations, interests, see who is active and inactive, see who follows you back, all the way down to engagement levels. #3 Canva mobile I use it almost daily for creating visuals for social, blogs, video and The mobile app uses free images in a variety of templates, ready for different platforms. You can then save it to your phone, upload on whatever platform and Bob’s your Uncle! #5 AMEC Framework I found out in June just before #PRFest that AMEC would be launching a new framework tool online, to help practitioners be more consistent in delivering quality evaluation of campaigns.
10. Paid and earned media - there is a big difference As Aura works across the media landscape, it has become obvious that there is work to be done to ensure clients are fully aware of the difference between paid and earned media. The Competitions and Market Authority (CMA) have started to become involved in cases where paid media hasn't been transparent. As you may know, Laura is a member of the CIPR's Council and as such, believes in setting an example to fellow PR practitioners. She has recently finished a best practice guide, co-authored by fellow CIPR member Gavin Harris, which talks about the ethical approach to paid and earned media. What is paid media? Simply put, it’s media that you pay for! Paid for Facebook posts or promoted tweets are common examples of paid media on social media. Traditional paid media streams such as display advertising and search marketing are a more directly relevant route to generate users to the site, which is useful to create traffic and in turn create website conversions. Paid media in public relations can directly target audiences in a timely and relevant manner. What’s the issue? The question of ethical earned media can be blurred particularly if editorial is offered as part of a package of paid media. If you look back at the PESO model, you'll see where each has their strengths and where they apply. What’s the difference between advertising and advertorial? An advertorial is an advert which appears in the form of editorial content. The word "advertorial" combines the words "advert” and editorial." We tend not to use 'advertorial' as it can confuse people if it's paid or earned. What is earned media? Earned content is earned on merit because of its relevance and value to audiences. It’s also distinguishable by the fact it’s never paid for. Earned content should be generated through following an ethical and transparent process that seeks to inform audiences on how content is generated. For example, if you have paid for editorial which includes an image and links, then this will be considered an advertorial and should be ‘labelled’ as this, by the publisher. #ad W W W . A U R A - P R . C O M
11. The UK Code of Non-broadcast Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing (CAP Code) provides clear guidance in this area and the UK Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) has sought assurances from advertising agencies that they won’t breach consumer protection legislation. The bottom line is consumers must always be aware when content is being funded by a third party. Other types of earned content include those generated through influencer relations such as blogs, vlogs and mentions in posts on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn. The same rules apply here – regardless of whether if it’s a “mention” in a tweet or a whole blog post dedicated to a brand or its products and services, it’s only earned if it’s produced on merit and not paid for. Ifitispaidfor,you'relikelytosee#ador somethingsimilar.Lauraoftencomments oncelebrityandbrandposts,askingthem tobemoretransparenttoreaders. Ethical implications Workingonbehalfofanemployerorclients togeneratecontentfrombloggersand socialmediainfluencerswhodon’treveal whentheyarebeingpaidtopromotea product,serviceorbrandisagainstthe CIPRCodeofConduct. Completetransparencyistheonlyway. The best practice guide will launch on 1st October as part of the CIPR's Ethics Month
12. New framework for measurement & evaluation Aura's Chief, Laura Sutherland, led a panel of practitioners to review the new framework PartoftheissueofunderstandingthevalueofPR,isthepoorqualityofmeasurementand evaluationfrompractitioners. Untilrecentyears,AVEswereusedagainstthequantityofcoverage,whichsimplyisn'taformof measurement. AVEsarenolongeracceptedacrossmuchoftheindustryandorganisationssuchasAMEC, theInternationalAssociationforMeasurementofCommunications,ismakingheadwayto improveindustrystandards., Asaresultofconsultationwiththeindustryandindeedimportantly,thebusinessworld,,AMEC launchedanewframeworkonline,inJune. Theframeworkinmyviewisn'tquitethere,butit'sastartingpoint.Iledapaneloffiveother practitioners,fromacrosstheworld,onbehalfofthePRCA.Weusedtheframeworkonprojects andreviewedanumberofthings:1.theconcept2.theusage3.theinformationandreportingis givesand4.howitcouldbedeveloped. Theframeworkisbrokendownintosevenparts.Yousimplyclickononeofthesectionsto inputinformationandonceyou'vecompletedallofthem,yousubmitthecontentandit generatesareportforyou. Youcan'tsaveandgobackandamendlaterasit'sdoneinyourbrowser. Asitstands,thereisnoroomfornarrativeorexplanations.Similarly,ifanactivityhasfailed,that stillneedstobeincluded,butatthemomentthereisno'area' forthistypeofinformation.
13. Newsagendaschangeeveryminutedependingonwhat'shappeningandthiscan affectacampaign'ssuccess.Again,thereisnoplaceforthistypeofinformationonthe report. Measurementandevaluationstartsatthebeginningofanycampaign- notattheend. Theframeworkcanhelpplanacampaign,ensuringallsectionshavebeencompleted, evenwithexpectedoutcomesandimpacts. Sowhilsttheframeworkisanexcellent,start,thereareimprovementstobemade.I hopeAMECtakesourreviewandputstheconstructivefeedbackintoaction. Howcanyouusetheframework?Itwillhelpyoutounderstandwhatyouneedtobe discussingandagreeingwithyourPRagency.Itwillalsohelpyoutograspwhatis involvedinstrategy,tactics,measurementandevaluation. Practitionersneedaccesstoallsortsofdatatohelpthemmeasureandevaluate- GoogleAnalytics,salesreporters,trends,sign-upsetc.Italllinksbacktotheobjectives, KPIsandtheoverallimpact.Thereisnopointinjustlistingtacticsandoutputs. TheabovewillalsodemonstratethatPRneedstocollaboratewithotherdepartments, togainaccesstodataandtounderstandthebusiness- before,duringandafter. The new framework by AMEC W W W . A U R A - P R . C O M
14. Aura strategies Aura events Aura issues Aura crisis Get in touch...you'd be surprised where a conversation can lead! Aura content W W W . A U R A - P R . C O M
15. Christmas shopping will begin soon. Is your campaign ready? Aura tips for developing your campaign Do you have a product which is an ideal gift or a service which can be used across the festive period? Start to think now, what that is, who you are targeting and how you can get it infront of the consumer. Magazines will be looking for products to feature in the gift pages of supplements - get a forward features plan and start to sell your product in. You'll need great product imagery and a short narrative with pricing to accompany. Are you looking for Christmas bookings for your restaurant, hotel, bar or venue? Think about allocating a budget for promoted posts on Facebook, paid advertising in supplements or if you've got something unusual about your menu, it may be of interest to the features writers. You'll need great photography of the dish to help it in or you could set up a photo opportunity with your chef and the dish. Don't forget your email database. Email marketing done right can be highly effective. Make your content visual. Pay to reach those audiences who are hard to reach. Try and come up with an original angle - people love buying unusual or different gifts. Don't just repackage what you've already got! If you need help - you know where we are!
16. What's on... Glasgow Doors Open Day 12-18 September Great Scottish Run 1 October Mackintosh Festival the month of October Glasgow Loves Christmas 6 October - 31 December Edinburgh Oktoberfest 5-9 October BBC Good Food Show Scotland 6 November The Country Living Magazine Christmas Fair 17-20 November Edinburgh's Christmas 18 November - 8 January Winter Foodies Festival 25-27 November Visit list.co.uk for Scotland-wide event listings W W W . A U R A - P R . C O M
17. Client spotlight thelighthouseevents.co.uk When it comes to hosting an event in Glasgow, The Lighthouse offers a city centre location in a very stylish and unique building. SetjustoffBuchananStreet,the'StyleMile',The Lighthousespanssixfloors.It'saneventvenue,exhibition spaceandvisitorcentre. Onanyvisityoucanvisitoneoftheexhibitions,graba coffeeintheDoocotCafe,seespectacularviews,learn aboutCharlesRennieMackintosh,buygiftsorsimplyhave awanderaboutthefabulousbuilding. Thevenuenowhasanumberofeventspaces,catering fromlargeconferencesanddinnerstosmallboardroom meetings.Withon-sitecatering,freewifiand complimentarywater,it'sano-brainertobookThe Lighthouseforyournextevent. ThelatestroomtobeaddedtothevenuespacesisThe TowerRoom.Exposedstonework,largewindowsanda cosyfeelmakesanintimatespaceforbrainstorming, creativemeetingsorevenaBoardawayday. OFFER! Free tea/coffee for up to 20 delegates if you quote #AuraTalk when booking!
18. Visit aura-pr.com #AuraTalk Acting as an extension of your team, providing a professional and personal service, across public relations. @AuraPR