From Tesla’s clever marketing move from an all-leather car model to New Balance’s new lease of life, the powerful impact that PR can have on society is not to go unnoticed.
Growing up, brands such as New Balance and Puma were known as the humble, affordable shoe manufacturers. Fast forward 10 years and New Balance is now the most desirable label in the industry with A listers such as Rihanna and Chris Pine sporting the shoes regularly. Jaden Smith even created his own collection for the brand earlier this year. This is a perfect example of the opinion and perception of a brand changing over time. Why? PR magic.
PR is the pillar of marketing and it holds all of the power when it comes to positively transforming your brand. While regularly underestimated, PR value statistics show that good PR is 90% more successful in influencing consumers than advertising.
From a communications perspective, a well-thought-out, engaging brand communications strategy is more attractive than a simple advertisement. In short, if consumers think that a brand will benefit their life then they are more likely to support and invest.
As PR is extremely influential, it is overly important that it is done in the right way. Experts in this field must understand that consumers may be impacted in a negative way if the content is persuasive-enough. Therefore this needs to be completed in a positive manner and in a way that will benefit society as a whole.
Tesla gave us a fantastic example of powerful PR reframing. Tesla’s recent move to use cruelty-free leather in its cars’ interior trimmings earned praise among members globally. And yet, rewind to the 70s, these seats would have been referred to as plastic and seen as the cheaper option. However thanks to the power of PR, society will now view this brand as fully sustainable.
Fashion brands have even managed to make the aftermath of COVID-19 on our wardrobes more desirable by spreading a positive PR message. The takeover of ‘Working From Home’ and ‘Athleisure’ fashion has erupted; formal dress codes have dissolved and suits have been replaced for sweats.
Rewind a few years, turning up to work in anything but a suit would have been seen as unusual. However thanks to the power of PR, fashion houses used this to their advantage by creating a new trend of casual wear. Adverts featured basic, casual pieces and independent athleisure companies such as Tala and Adanola saw a huge rise in sales. Even when Boris Johnson attended the Group of Seven nations meeting earlier this year, the group photo saw them all ditching their ties. This is the first time in 40 years that the G-7 portrait was taken without them. It’s PR reframing, and it’s a powerful one.
The moral of the story is to never underestimate the power that PR can hold.
It can challenge, change and inspire societies views and in some ways, if done correctly, it is the most influential tool that a brand can have available to them.