ISSUE TWO | SUMMER ‘09
Pigs are Worth It!
Facing Fears Head On.
Trust Me, I’m a Doctor.
Tapping into the Feelgood Factor.
A New Vision.
The Art of Influence in Russia.
Colin Byrne CEO, UK & Europe
Then I told
the first PR
to be a
I was in one of our Continental Then I told them David would be the first Welcome to the second edition of
European offices recently, PR professional to be a European Prime 33 & A Third RPM, our EMEA newsletter
Minister (though the guy running the UK as focussing on insights and observations
updating staff on developments I write – my old boss Lord Mandelson the from our leading PR executives around the
around the region. At one point former European Commissioner – world. This issue takes in PR and business
I put up a picture of David once held a director of communications developments in Asia, Russia and in U.S.
job). The ears pricked up. We agreed it financial services, broadcast and insights
Cameron, the UK Conservative was a sign of the continued growth of the into running campaigns that win major
Party leader, and told them that influence of PR. awards and achieve really significant results
in all probability he would be for clients.
British Prime Minister by June I hope you find it of interest.
next year. There was barely a
ripple of interest.
Tamora Langley Director, Public Affairs, London
Always Work You can even get away
with being a rich old
with Children Etonian providing you can
laugh at yourself when you
fall over in a pond in front
and Animals. of photographers.
No I’m not talking about getting So what’s changed? Perhaps never before An example in point is the ‘Pigs are worth The objective we set was to raise the price Within nine months the price ‘tipping
have Members of Parliament been so it!’ initiative that over the last eight months of pork from £1.06/KG to £1.40/KG to point’ that enabled British pig farmers
a job as a children’s television collectively rocked by the power of the has won four international awards enable farmers to break even. Of course to break even was reached, and some
presenter, but about some of media. The expenses scandal has seen including a ‘Best PR-Led Integrated the principal organisations with the power were even turning a profit. We estimated
the recent work we’ve been MPs cowering before their local Campaign’ PR Lion at the Cannes Lions to ensure these increases were the a total increase for farmers of £5.1m per
doing in Public Affairs. And newspapers. The Daily Telegraph’s never- International Advertising Festival and the supermarkets. To apply pressure to them, week. Although the political activity that
ending catalogue of duck ponds, moats ‘Platinum SABRE for Best PR Programme the team needed to demonstrate support resulted from the campaign is likely to
please don’t switch off at the and bath plugs has driven them like of the Year’ at the European SABRE from consumers, unity among producers continue into next year, it was the
mention of PA. Ours may, in the lemmings to the edge of, and in some Awards. and political pressure for fair pricing to emotional appeal of the campaign that
past, have been a job centred on cases over, the cliff of resignation. Those reflect farmers’ costs. Consumer polling brought so many MPs onboard in the first
who stay will not forget the experience any The backdrop was a disastrous wheat established support for the farmers and a place. And for that reason I make the case
long lunches with men in grey time soon. In the run-up to the General harvest, which left British pig farmers willingness to pay more. A ‘Global Feed that working with children and animals can
suits to speculate about who is Election (expected next spring) those MPs facing crippling feed prices that Commodities Market’ report explained the be a very good thing.
the Prime Minister’s flavour of still fighting recognise they need to appear threatened to put them out of business. exceptional economic circumstances
more humble and in-touch with ordinary Pig farmers’ body BPEX asked us to farmers were experiencing. An advertising
the month and what changes the people. This means being seen more in brainstorm a creative campaign, and then campaign ran in the nationals and on the
forthcoming regulations of the constituency rather than Westminster, work with their roster of agencies to put it London Underground.
regulators might bring. More and looking for media opportunities that into practice. Our idea – ‘Pigs are worth it!’
recently though, we’ve been show their human side. As London Mayor – sought to draw attention to the fact that We matched pig farmers with their local
Boris Johnson has proved in recent British pig farmers work to the highest MPs, to ensure there was a link that would
wiping the awards boards with months, you can even get away with being standards of animal welfare. We were interest MPs’ local and regional media. At
campaigns that have involved a rich old Etonian providing you can laugh appealing to consumers and retailers that a rally opposite Downing Street an affable
coaxing MPs into a pen with a at yourself when you fall over in a pond in it was worth paying more for ‘happy pigs’ sow – ‘Winnie’ – spent the day in a luxury
front of photographers. and asking them to accept higher prices pen being met and greeted by MPs keen
half-ton pig called ‘Winnie’, for British pork, bacon, ham and sausages, to offer their support and be snapped
discussing naked beekeeping This means PA consultants need to rather than looking to cheaper imports alongside their constituent. Only one took
with the Women’s Institute and understand how to build media from pigs produced under inferior welfare a tumble in the hay due to the pig turning
opportunities into our campaigns and how conditions. With British consumers known around rather too fast! Along with other
working with Jamie Oliver’s to work with the media to secure across Europe for their tendency to be consumer and trade PR tactics such as the
production team. supportive and positive coverage. swayed by price above quality, the appeal creation of a campaign anthem - ‘Stand by
was a tough one. your ham’ – ‘Pigs are worth it!’ reached a
UK audience of 30 million through press,
broadcast and online media coverage.
Paul Jensen General Manager, New York, and Executive Vice President
Striving for No wonder many
Transparency is institutions are
ducking for cover.
Riskier than Ever.
It was a sign of the times. A few Then came the kicker: “And I’m just tired The expectation of transparency and Goldman Sachs, addressing the Council of Communications leaders should be
weeks ago a financial journalist of ruining people’s careers.” What do you engagement has never been greater. Institutional Investors in Washington, broke mindful of this judgment bias and help
mean? I pressed. “Well, you become close away from his CEO peers and openly and their executive teams avoid the “bunker
came into my office to interview to these people (in her case, the So what to do? First, financial institutions honestly discussed his industry’s recent mentality” that can result from more fear-
for a job. After many years communications and business unit heads need to ensure they are getting not only collapse. Instead of avoiding engagement based decisionmaking.
writing business stories, she of many U.S. financial institutions). You good counsel, but good information as on sensitive issues such as shoddy risk
had decided to “come over to hear their stories of why they made this-or- well. They need to know when to engage, management and excessive executive I will close with another anecdote…
the dark side” and pursue a that decision, and they seem reasonable. and when perhaps it might not be worth compensation, Blankfein acknowledged a conversation I had in the summer of 2007
Then you go back to the office and your the risk. A recent survey by KRC Research, the industry’s past mistakes, took a with the head Wall Street reporter from a
career in public relations. Her editor says, “Now there must be a for example, revealed that the majority of position on current debates such as mark- top-tier business publication in New York.
reasons were sound and negative angle in there somewhere, and Americans paid little or no attention to the to-market accounting, and laid out a He was lamenting the fact that he had
familiar… her financial trade it’s your job to find it.” Treasury Department’s “stress tests” on the reasonable vision for the future. In the been unable to get calls returned from a
publication was losing money nation’s 19 largest banks, and the vast words of one pundit, Blankfein, along with particular financial institution following
and continuing to lay off The story is instructive. With advertising majority said the results of these tests Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase and news of significant losses in their hedge
dollars continuing to slide and breeding an would not affect their views of their bank. Josef Ackermann of Deutsche Bank, have fund business. “They won’t talk to me…
staffers, her prospects for ever-shrinking news hole, many Useful information in contemplating stepped up during this time and “become I don’t understand why they wouldn’t at
making a decent living in publications have become more negative proactive engagement on the issue. influential voices in shaping Wall Street’s least want to give their side of the story,”
journalism were getting ever and sensational than ever in their editorial future.” he complained. “It’s clear to me that they
slimmer, and she even liked tone in order to capture attention. Is it any Second, financial institutions should must have something to hide… I can’t wait
the idea of advising clients on wonder that so many financial institutions recognise that where there is challenge, Finally, and perhaps most obvious, to write a hard-hitting piece on them.”
are staying in the bunker with their heads there is often opportunity. The negative financial institutions must not let fear and
how to deal with journalists “safely” below the line of fire? media environment has led to an obvious frustration over the lack of fair-and- That company’s name was Bear Stearns.
like herself. leadership void, for example, providing a balanced coverage rule the day in
The unfortunate reality is, financial rare opportunity for the CEO who is willing evaluating how to communicate. The risks
institutions can’t afford to hide. The old to step up and provide statesman-like of engagement are usually more obvious
rules of communicating with stakeholders guidance on where the industry has been, and worrisome than the sometimes
still apply: Customers want an honest and where it is going, and what lessons can be hidden, but potentially more dangerous,
open dialogue on issues of concern, Wall learned. risks of not engaging at all.
Street demands transparency in real time,
and employees crave straight talk on what Some financial institutions have gotten
it all means for them. And compounding smart about this and begun to move from
the issue for TARP-recipient banks is the defence to offence. Heads turned in April,
new reality of government… for example, when Lloyd Blankfein of
i.e. taxpayers… as shareholder.
Rachael Pay Managing Director, Healthcare Europe Lucie Harper Managing Director, Healthcare London
Doctor Digital. As we enter the
Observations on recent trends what can we
in healthcare and social media. expect to see?
Ever reached for the phone to Figures show 59 per cent of adults turn to Searching for Answers From a medical research standpoint much The Future of Healthcare
internet-based resources versus 55 per The most commonly searched health and is being learnt from the healthcare social and Social Media
make a doctor’s appointment cent who go to their doctor and 29 per wellness topics online are for symptoms media space – researchers are uniting with As we enter the next revolution in
and stopped and reached for the cent who talk to relatives, friends or co- and treatment options. From a healthcare patients to learn about side-effects in real- healthcare what can we expect to see? In
mouse instead? Research shows workers1. This makes for a host of communications perspective it’s important time, doctors are sharing challenging cases Europe specifically we could argue there
that the internet (aka Doctor healthcare communication challenges and to understand what language the potential and solutions and people are turning to needs to be greater recognition from the
opportunities as a shift of information patient is using to search for healthcare “patients like me” for knowledge-sharing, healthcare professional audiences of the
Digital) is now the go-to moves from the family practitioner to information and build that into the content data-sharing and around-the-clock benefit and value of social media for
resource for health and wellness portals, pods, patient blogs and wikis. - it may be that “acute diarrhoea” does not emotional support. patient populations – particularly those
related information over and naturally fall from the fingertips of the with chronic conditions such as diabetes,
Who Do You trust – Man or Mouse? suffering individual surfing the web but One of the most convincing health heart disease and cancer. Proactive
above the family doctor. Despite the surge in online communication “upset stomach” does, or perhaps, benefits of social networks was recommendations on where to go for
and healthcare portals as a go-to for “chronic migraine” is better described as demonstrated even before the internet support could form part of the consultation
information, trust is the biggest divide “splitting headaches”. Weber Shandwick’s became widely available. In 1979 a large- along with training on how to use future
between Dr. Digital and Dr. Person. At the healthcare team works closely with our scale study in California showed that tools and modalities. We may also predict
heart of every healthcare campaign Weber digital experts to ensure we maximise people with the lowest levels of social the development of new programmes
Shandwick proposes is a digital media every opportunity and replicate the contact had mortality rates two to four- focussing on personal health data and
component – we call this inline as language people are using to search for and-a-half times greater than those with more targeted social networking putting
regardless of medium, our message is healthcare information. strong social networks. Since then more patients in contact with other patients of a
consistently the same. At no point is it a research has shown that stable, supportive very similar profile. The self-policing of
substitute for seeing a medical doctor - The Heart of Healthcare 2.0 social networks improve health conditions sites will continue with increased scrutiny
we think of it as an adjunct that helps build There was a time when people logged for people experiencing a number of and consolidation as people expect
the dialogue between patient and doctor onto a healthcare portal to read reams of conditions from heart disease to post-natal greater transparency and openness and
that ultimately improves outcomes static information on a particular condition. depression2. industry will begin to engage more
whether that’s faster diagnosis, improved That’s not the case now as at the core of actively, working within the regulations to
knowledge of treatment options or patient the healthcare transformation are regular ensure they too are part of the discussion.
support. people or POLs “Patient Opinion
Leaders”, the leaders of the pack who are
convening, empowering, engaging and
educating consumers and healthcare 1. ICrossing: How America Searches Health &
Wellness, January 2008
2. Beckman L.F. and Syme S.L. “Social Networks, Host
Resistance, and Mortality: A Nine-Year Follow-Up
Study of Alameda County Residents.” American
Journal of Epidemology. 109:186-204, 1979.
Ian Rumsby Executive Vice President, Strategic and Business Development, Asia Pacific
Tapping into the optimism be
the best tonic
for an economic
Feelgood Factor. recovery?
Much is made of Asia in Asia, however you look at it, is a rough and Whether that’s reality or blind optimism is, By definition, the “anguish or action” Asians (if you can legitimately categorise
tumble of intrigue and optimism cast from for the most part, dependent on your position is polarising. A bit convenient, 2.5 billion people) tend to be a glass-half-
western society. Part inspired a mould of deep-rooted values and media of choice and the day of the week. possibly, but it neatly captures the reality of full bunch and there’s very definitely a
wonder, part interminable commercial prowess. Its systems and In fact part of the problem that companies broader business sentiment in Asia right sense of recession fatigue in the region. It
frustration, it remains one of protocols fly in the face of the overly and corporations face right now is that now. For some, rising oil prices and a move was something that came through strongly
those niggling places that is simplistic evangelists of globalisation; its there’s such a proliferation of data and away from the US dollar into commodity- at the Economist Conference and it
scale and diversity make it impossible to opinion on the future of Asian countries linked currencies is a clear sign that the matters enormously. In its most simple
as irresistibly alluring as it is apply commercial blue-prints that have that it’s difficult to get a handle on real economic shoots of recovery are better terms it means that people move away
provocatively confronting. been successfully rolled out elsewhere; its market and media sentiment. established across the region. For others, from the paralysis that comes from the fear
citizens are more upwardly mobile than government stimulus packages have done of the unknown and, instead, they get back
anywhere else on the planet; and two of its It was because of this that earlier this year little more than force-feed economies at a to stimulating demand without
Consumers love it for its nations, combined, account for one third Weber Shandwick partnered with The time when long-term nourishment is government intervention.
rich history and spirituality. of the world’s population. Economist Conferences team as a primary needed to create sustained economic
Businesses are blinded by its sponsor of the Asia CEO Agenda growth. It’s that disregard for long-term pessimism
As a region of 30 countries or so, some no conference in Singapore. that could well prove to be the
promise of unparalleled more than island archipelagos, it is easy to Of course, no one really knows. This is new unquantifiable reason for Asia’s economic
growth. Some businesses over generalise. No one country is alike It was an important event at a critical time. territory for everyone and, not surprisingly, recovery. That and a new generation of
get it. Others don’t. Most sit and there’s enormous variation in the way Amid the gloom of failed businesses and no sooner has a point of view been Chinese and Indian business people who
uncomfortably in the middle, organisations operate in each of them. crushed economies, there was a sniff of published, as is its logic thrown off course will not allow their destinies to be
More so in China and India where their longer-term optimism in the air. No one by a sharper interpretation of available undermined by the economic fragility of
thinking they get it whilst their respective size and diversity means was quite sure what was going to happen data. Recent OECD forecast adjustments other nations.
actions suggest that that’s companies have to develop and execute next, which is why the opportunity to that put China’s GDP projections at +7.7%
misguided self-belief at best. on multiple strategies that address very sound out the 100 or so CEOs in against the Eurozone’s -4.8% are National pride, entrepreneurialism and
different stakeholder needs. attendance was such a hot ticket. encouraging. But right now, one man’s inherent optimism may seem a rather
crystal ball is as good as the next. unsubstantive platform on which to build
It is in these two countries where the There were a lot of insights and plenty of an economic recovery. But that’s precisely
current commercial focus lies. Nearly a numbers to paw over. But when it came what makes Asia such an intriguing and
year into the deepest post-war recession down to it, the real message from this exciting place to be.
seen, they remain the beacon of hope for a event was pleasingly simple and
long awaited recovery. The consensus of surprisingly common: companies have two
Western opinion is that the signs are choices – endless anguish or purposeful
increasingly positive. action. The bulk of those business leaders
in the room choose the latter every time.
Nick Rabin Head of Broadcast, UK
When Bruce Springsteen sang As traditional broadcast is currently going the obvious self-interest, it’s hard to Brands that are willing and able to deliver So if the future of broadcasting is online,
through its most challenging period, with disagree when the facts are so compelling. relevant content can then become an where does that leave traditional
about 57 channels and nothing shrinking audiences, shrinking budgets Broadcast PR in the digital age has to be active and trusted member of a particular broadcast? True, it may be going through a
on, he clearly wasn’t looking and more demanding customers, the about more than simply media relations; it community. They can foster or nurture a tough time and there’s little sign that it’s
ahead to a world where the internet is now at the heart of a revolution should utilise all the available tools to community and begin to create a going to get any easier anytime soon, but
internet is delivering thousands in the way we both watch and produce engage with specific audiences. The reality connection with its members that will let’s not forget how important and
video content. Success as an internet is that traditional broadcast media filters ultimately encourage people to become influential traditional broadcast still is both
of channels to even the smallest broadcaster, however, is all about stories, and even elements of a story to fit advocates. online and offline. People have a unique
niche audience. It’s unlikely too delivering specific content to specific their own needs. That, of course, is nothing relationship with television and radio
that he was thinking about the audiences with specific interests – in new; it’s the way things have always been Weber Shandwick Vision is a new offering journalists that cannot and should not be
essence it’s more narrowcasting that and is driven by the fact that broadcasters that is designed to maximise the reach and ignored. It’s a relationship borne out of the
opportunities that the internet broadcasting. have to meet the needs of a wide and impact of any video content that’s fact that every evening, news reporters and
broadcast revolution can bring diverse audience. The opportunities made produced. The key to success is in presenters are invited into people’s homes
to carefully thought through PR The changing environment means that PR possible by internet video, IPTV and video identifying your audience and using to look them in the eye and deliver their
needs to adapt the way it works if it’s to podcasts mean that it’s now possible to analytical tools to help tailor both your view of the world. Combining the medium
campaigns. fully take advantage of the opportunities deliver news directly to your audience in a content and outreach programme. In short we know and love with a medium we are
that present themselves. The success of way that is relevant to them. it’s all about matching what you’re offering quickly becoming infatuated with is an
sites like YouTube came about because the to the type and style of content that’s exciting prospect. Remember, one of the
founders realised that people’s relationship One look around the internet will tell you being sought. world’s most viewed video clips online is
with video content had changed and that there is a myriad of different Susan Boyle’s appearance on Britain’s Got
crucially that many of the barriers to communities, all with their own areas of A recent study showed that television was Talent – an internet phenomenon born
becoming a broadcaster, from costs to interest and all with their own focus. down to 70% of video watching time from from the most traditional of television
technical challenges, had been lifted. Its Whether it’s people who own a specific car 75% last year, while people watching video formats.
growth has been staggering. Every minute, or have an interest in cooking or sailing or, through their computers was up from 11%
of every hour, of every day there are 13 in fact, almost anything you can think of, to 19%. It’s undoubtedly a shift in
hours of videos being uploaded to these communities all have one thing in behaviour, but while the platform may be
YouTube, and around the world people are common; they share content. changing the desire for something that’s
watching around 100 million videos every entertaining, informative or relevant is still
day, and this is just the beginning. Last very much to the fore. Apart from a few
year one of YouTube’s founders, Chad notable exceptions – Charlie bit my finger
Hurley, wrote that “in ten years, we believe springs to mind – successful video whether
that online video broadcasting will be the it’s online or offline needs to be well
most ubiquitous and accessible form of targeted if the people you want to reach
communication”. Even taking into account are going to seek it out and share it.
Nataliya Popovych President, PRP Group CIS, a Weber Shandwick affiliate company
Customisation and Today, Russia is
striving to become
Consumer Education Hold a global leader in
the Key to Success in Russia.
This Russian pride stretches into the
With a population of 143 million While the President and Prime Minister The Russian government’s influence is Today, Russia is striving to become a competitive advantages. The fact that in
global arena. It is no coincidence that the
enjoy an amazing 60-70% approval rating, apparent even in those areas that in the global leader in innovation. Government Russian the term insurance is
spread across 11 time zones, Russians have an inherent distrust of all economically developed societies of the organisation Rusnano was founded to “strakhovaniye”, based on the root of the local slogan of the Sochi 2014 games for
Russia is one of the world’s other governmental structures. This is West are traditionally driven by consumers. invest over $5 billion in developing word “strakh” or fear in English, does not Russia was not Gateway to the Future, but
The Games we DESERVED. There is pride
largest, most rapidly developing reinforced by high levels of corruption, a Corporate social responsibility in Russia nanotechnology. International leaders are help either.
too in growing prosperity, with the luxury
and complex markets. Achieving problem frequently encountered by often occurs due to the government’s starting to see Russia as a venue for hi-tech
international companies entering the urging or instruction for business to invest investment: HP has one of its three global There are many potential opportunities for consumer goods market holding up well
commercial success here market. in its communities, rather than through laboratories in St. Petersburg, international businesses in Russia if they despite difficult global circumstances.
requires a customised approach. communities demanding that companies pharmaceutical companies are committing understand the average consumer. In
The government has sought to attract give back. resources to R&D in the region and there certain segments, Russian consumers are As Russia becomes home to an increasing
For although Russia has changed number of international brands and
international investment, yet at the same are even long-term government plans to both patriotic and proud of their heritage
enormously over the last 15 time it retains a significant influence on Not only does the political environment of develop a Silicon Valley in Russia. and will often rebel against global companies, there is the widespread
years, from an international business. Remarks from senior government Russia heavily influence companies conglomerates in favour of Russian brands, realisation that a company can grow fast
and rich here if it understands the rules
business standpoint it remains a figures, whether explicit or vague, can have working in the region, but the unique Undoubtedly the Russian people have which are perceived to be more natural.
and complies with the environment.
a damaging impact on business consumer picture also requires special endured a turbulent transition since the fall Consumer brands find they need to be
Wild West of sorts, a challenging reputation. attention. Companies entering the market of communism, marked with financial conscious of this and adapt their Communication and market insight are
Terra Incognita. find they are dealing with consumers with a crises and major investment scams. This positioning in order to avoid major key to achieving this success.
When Russian Prime Minister Vladimir higher-than-average cultural education. has led to very peculiar financial habits: mishaps.
Putin publicly accused Russian mining and From a country that gave the world after repeated bank defaults, many
metals giant Mechel of tax avoidance, the Pushkin, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky and Chekhov Russians stopped trusting the system, A successful example is Campbell’s Soup
company’s stock plunged 30% in a single came also some of the world’s leading choosing mattresses over bank accounts. Company. Before the company entered
day of trading in New York. Overall, the innovations in chemistry, nuclear physics Now, coming out of recession it will be a the Russian market it invested in significant
government’s influence means companies and aviation. challenge for financial services companies consumer research. The approach paid off:
active in the Russian market need a either already in the market or entering via Russians are soup experts and positioning
specific focus on corporate messaging and M&A to establish credibility with the Campbell’s as the world’s soup expert
executive visibility and must be extra Russian population. would have been immediately rejected. So
cautious and respectful of government Campbell’s developed a special Russian
stakeholders. Time and time again, companies have product: boullion bases that helped
found that they must focus on consumer Russian consumers make their own soups
education. Sometimes this means starting according to their own recipes. Campbell’s
from scratch: when ING Life launched in has seen the successful results in the form
Russia, it had to explain the basic idea of consumer advocates, and ever-
behind life insurance before it could even increasing sales.
begin to start communicating its
HTML. Spanish. Twitter.
Plain English. Jargon.
We speak your language.
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