by Sarah Hall
There is a lot of talk about the threat to PR as disciplines merge.
Some argue that with the evolution of comms, PR and marketing are now one and the same. Many continue to assert that PR is a subset of marketing.
In truth, PR holds much greater value as a strategic management tool and is far from a dying art.
PR’s unique gift is its ability to build mutually beneficial relationships with an organisation’s stakeholders to help it achieve its goals. No other comms discipline has such influence or can complement and even correct other marketing techniques in the way PR can.
In 1999, Dr Jon White presented a paper to the Swiss Public Relations Society that stated that the future was bright for PR practitioners.
This was dependent on practitioners recognising ‘the opportunities presented by the environment and management needs’ and taking ‘steps to educate and train themselves’, as well as making ‘full use of communication technology, to provide reliable, if not indispensable, services to managers as they seek to deal with complexity and manage successful businesses.’
Very little has changed.
This is where #FuturePRoof comes in.
The aim of the #FuturePRoof books and community is to remind ourselves of the inherent value of PR and to increase awareness of the role it plays in driving business success.
Alongside this, the books are designed to provide a practical guide to some of the key issues facing the managers of comms teams today.
Their purpose is to drive up standards and professionalism, engender innovative thinking and to encourage PR practitioners to create disruption, not just embrace it.
All three #FuturePRoof books team with best practice advice and guidance thanks to the wealth of talent featured within them. They provide context on the world in which we operate today. They offer practical solutions to daily challenges while scanning the horizon and looking at how to identify and navigate ‘what’s next’.
Each book has a stellar line up and I am grateful to all the contributors for giving up their time free of charge and sharing their expertise so generously.
My thanks also go to Stephen Waddington for helping to shape #FuturePRoof from concept through to fruition. Stephen has a special talent for building highly engaged communities for the greater good. It is by following this collaborative model that #FuturePRoof was realised. Equally, it's through his ongoing support that the #FuturePRoof podcast was born and continues to thrive.
And finally... #FuturePRoof is a real passion project and I'm often asked how it's funded. I personally invest in the design, production and marketing and no mark up is placed on the books so they remain as accessible as possible to all. I hope you enjoy them as much as I have enjoyed curating and editing them. If you'd like to know more about the backstory, you can find that here.
Sarah Hall is a pioneer of best practice in the PR industry. The holder of the CIPR’s Sir Stephen Tallents Medal 2014 for exceptional achievement in public relations practice, she has established a reputation as an ethics tsar and diversity and inclusivity champion.
She is a strong advocate of accountable leadership and women in business and believes in helping young talent break through.
Sarah is the CIPR's President for 2018, a member of the Northern Power Women Power List, features in the PRWeek UK Power Book and is a regular speaker at industry events. She is one of Lissted's top North East England digital influencers and her PR-related blog is one of the top ten in the UK according to Vuelio.
Sarah is proud to be on the Athena40 Global Committee, an initiative launched by the Global Thinkers Forum to discover and acknowledge the work of the 40 most dynamic, active and fearless female thought leaders, columnists, commentators and activists across all industries and from all over the world.
She was the first North East practitioner to become Chartered, a status that recognises the highest standard of knowledge, expertise and ethical practice within the PR industry and is a benchmark of professional excellence and integrity.
Sarah Hall Consulting Ltd