Three reasons companies shouldn’t sacrifice media communications

In the new economic climate post-Covid, companies face an elephant-sized communications conundrum. Many are cutting their PR campaign budgets. Here are three reasons your company shouldn’t be sacrificing its media communications.

Make no mistake, we are in the middle of an economic downturn. The pandemic, combined with the war in Ukraine and recent market trends, have meant VCs are tightening their belts, with many startups feeling the pinch.

If you work for a company you will no doubt have been ‘strongly advised’ to cut spending on ancillary services. These services likely include the likes of Advertising, Marketing and yes, PR.

Here’s why you shouldn’t be cutting your public relations budget:

  1. It’s bad for business
    Dropping your media outreach kills momentum – the fact that there is a global economic downturn is something that can’t be ignored. However, that doesn’t mean that everything should be put on pause or stopped altogether. You will have worked out a plan, a campaign trajectory, with your PR company, with goals. Their objectives were set to increase growth, drive traffic to your website, and solidify your public image as leaders, innovators and pioneers in your industry, all very valuable elements. By fully withdrawing your PR agenda you are throwing away all the hard work previously won, as a team effort, between your team and the PR consultancy you work with. That leads to point two.
  2. It’s more expensive
    In the long term, kickstarting a PR campaign from nothing will be more expensive. We all know this current situation will only last so long, that’s the good news. However, a company has to think about the position it wants to be in whilst coming out the other side. Companies that pause or cancel their campaigns wholesale now will, in effect, be starting from scratch afterwards. The news cycle being what it is, if you are a start-up that drops off the radar of outlets for even a couple of months then momentum begins to slip away. By not being in the eyes of the media you are not staying current. Remaining relevant, staying in the press, even if only in a minor way is, in the long run, much more advantageous than saving a couple of bucks now and will allow you to make use of the money you have already invested in the campaign rather than starting from scratch later. This brings us to point three.
  3. You need to stand out
    You need to capitalise on the lack of competitors – don’t follow the crowd, be an outsider and get noticed. Swarms of startups are following one another in cancelling their PR, slicing and dicing media spend. This means that there is space for someone to come up the inside lane and dominate the news cycle. If you are the only company in town (or one of the few) and you are available for an interview, outlets will be more likely to pick up the phone. Remember, with the outlet and journalist it’s a quid pro quo, you get coverage and they get something interesting to write about.

Key takeaways

An effective strategy for your business isn’t necessarily going to be to cut costs or to follow the crowd. Of course it’s important to save money but you also have to be cognizant of the effects this will have on your business, both in the short and long term should you wish to achieve global brand recognition.

John Collett

Executive Having joined ClearStory from the financial services regulation sector, John provides research and advisory services for early-stage companies.

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