Today’s PR consultants are brand ambassadors, social media experts, data analysts, content marketers, crisis managers, boardroom advisers and trend spotters in addition to the tasks associated with their traditional role and there is undoubtedly greater integration between PR, digital and marketing functions. Taking into account the wide range of responsibilities, communications tools and tactics that are currently linked to property PR, or are likely to be used in the future, there is likely to be a further blurring of the roles – and possibly a suggestion that ‘PR’ as a definition is out of date.
As Promoting Property: insight, experience and best practice shows, there are still pockets of property PR practice where the more traditional, media-relations-centric PR of the twentieth century is alive and kicking. Maybe this will always remain, reflecting the fundamental importance of human relationships in a sector that is very sociable and people-focused.
Certainly the broader PR skills are enduring – understanding the audience, the business context and using research to inform a strategy, creating a positive message and making it stand out; striking the delicate balance between what a property developer wants to promote and what the audience wants to hear; using creativity to select and implement appropriate (and genuinely engaging) tactics; and measuring the outcomes of all this on business performance, awareness and corporate reputation. All these are as relevant today as they ever have been.
Set alongside this is also an increasing understanding and use of PR as a strategic management discipline operating at board level, an increasingly sophisticated understanding of digital communications, and a much improved approach to evaluating impact and demonstrating ROI.
I see PR as the cornerstone in the relationship between an organisation and its publics, and as such, while it will continue to evolve, it will retain an important role in future communications for all aspects of the property sector.
Promoting Property: insight, experience and best practice can be purchased from Routledge, Amazon and all main booksellers and provides lots more food for thought on property and PR.