blog 073 pr digital bangkok thailand

The digital detox and how to disconnect

1. Be serious in assessing, and in providing a Caveman solution

The average net user spends 118 minutes on social media channels per day; that’s nearly 14 hours a week. When you start to add up all those hours in a serious way, the results can be somewhat alarming. Although work requires us to be available and in constant check-in status for much of the day, that still leaves a lot of hours in which you could be outside and phoneless, or in the sauna and unobtainable.


2. “immersed vs. informed”

It’s our job as PR people to stay up to date with current events and within-industry movements. But that doesn’t mean staying connected all day, all of the time. This is clearly not particularly healthy. Take long breaks, and enjoy those hours away from screen time. Check back in for quick news headlines (if you have to), but read real books instead of Guardian musings on life, toil and misery.


3. Turn off notifications

Work can still send you emails even if you turn the notifications off. However, this means that you can check your inbox when you’re not busy with other stuff, rather than running to the phone every time the Gmail message alert pings. Make them wait.


4. Go full-on caveman

Plan a five or seven day trip each year, even a low-cost excursion to a town or hotel near your home, and allocate that as a digital-free week. It’s much easier to achieve if you block off an entire week. Anyway, you’ve booked holiday, so it should be impossible for people to reach you from time to time.


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blog 072 pr digital bangkok thailand

Five essential personnel content marketing teams need to deliver for clients

  1. A journalist

Journalists are both newshounds and storytellers, and so are ideally placed to source, write, edit and by-line authored, written content.


  1. A community manager

Community managers do more than promote and distribute general content; they are responsible for engaging customers and helping to build a thriving community that keeps audience members coming back with regularity. They have a large role in monitoring newsworthy content, and responding to criticisms and suggestions from your followers. The community manager can also assist the staff overall by monitoring ‘hot’ topics and tracking industry trends.


  1. A graphic designer

Eye-catching, expressive or relevant visual content can make even simple or boring stories attractive online, pulling in viewers and giving posts more ‘pop’ magnetism on social media. It’s useful having access to at least a retained designer, someone who can step in on short notice and add the required visual flair to posts, opinion leader content or marketing material you put out.


  1. A video producer

Youtube is now the world’s Number Two search engine behind Google, and all social networks now apply more value and display listing power to video content. This is the way the industry has gone, even for static “photo” sites like Instagram. Having a video production specialist on stand-by, even for the occasional outsourced job, can be beneficial for exploiting this premium niche, both for your own content or for reselling to clients.


  1. A data analyst

Data, mining, analytics and more recently AI-based decision making models are the ‘here and now’, and the vast explosion in global bandwidth demand will only become more exponential. This is an area you must put some effort into understanding, even if its span of influence doesn’t quite reach to your organization. Agencies and consultants selling services to Hong Kong, Singapore or mainland China will already be receiving inquires in this field and its many IT-centric arms and evolutions.


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blog 071 pr digital bangkok thailand

Making a move from PR to journalism

The core skills you learn and use in PR transfer well to the newsroom. They include:


  1. Writing abilities

A large part of the PR day involves writing, including a tonne of documents across press releases, photo captions and blog articles.

Companies hiring for a journalism position will probably ask for writing samples, and so having a massive back catalogue of ‘hits’ is useful (especially in securing well-paid freelance for candidates in the interim).


  1. Editorial judgment

Editors in a PR firm know how to determine what’s important to their audience and plan their communication accordingly. It’s much easier to do this when you’ve already been on the other side, having to editorialize PR releases that make silly claims and use childish hyperbole (which is most press releases).


  1. Ability to meet deadlines

News by its nature has to be absorbed, edited and distributed very quickly, and working in PR is no different.  Delays client side often mean long delays in feedback, and managing this is the job of the PR consultant. Strong managers work with clients and coach them how to deliver what they need quickly. When this doesn’t happen, jobs get rushed and quality is poor.


  1. Multimedia experience

Most reporters now are responsible for creating multiple digital media assets for their stories, including photos, videos, infographics and social media promotion. This translates directly to the sorts of skills required in PR, because in essence, the two fields represent the light and dark halves of the same ying-yang. It all goes in the portfolio too, and video is impressive for potential employers.


  1. Media relations

Both media and PR are very much relationship businesses, and the bond between top media outlets and good PR firms cannot be over-emphasized. This is basically what builds PR companies and what they sell to clients. Media always needs content, of course, so it’s in the interest of both parties that this works well, both long-term and strategically.


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blog 070 pr digital bangkok thailand

Less is more in marketing and CRM

For many businesses, 20% of their client base represents 80% of their turnover. Here’s how to get more accounts like these.


  1. Understand the audience.

A CRM system, and one that is not necessarily the most expensive but one that works well for the size of your business, is the key to identifying clients and future clients. Many a successful business is built on a strong foundation of exceptional CRM management, and marketing agencies are selling a product in no uncertain terms.

Google Consumer Surveys brings real time results through a publisher network and Google Opinion Rewards systems and reward programs. CRM is an ideal way to manage any market surveys you undertake yourself, and integrate any you have commissioned through a third party.


  1. Segmentation for best results

CRM identifies high purchase value clients and those who have the potential for upselling and cross-selling scope improvement. CRM should also be used to attach personal reminders to a client record, such as in the case of client birthdays and the birthdays and anniversaries of family members they mention in conversation. This can all be recorded to create a multi-level well of useful relationship marketing data.

You’ll also be able to determine segments or business offering areas that are not currently performing well. This will help in prioritizing and ear-marking marketing spend to go further. A high churn rate could indicate a problem with your service, and is something that demands immediate rectification.


  1. Target easy wins

Web analytics systems such as Google Analytics allow you to deliver custom messaging to audiences—or remarketing. It is a cost effective way to accelerate spend results, and to get in immediate touch with people who are looking for exactly what you are offering.


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blog 069 pr digital bangkok thailand

Digital techniques for every type of marketer

1. Fast-loading content for smartphones

Google recently revealed that its new algorithm will rank pages partly by website loading speed, so a fluid and delay-free experience is essential for visitors. Simple metrics will show weaknesses here; you will have a proportionately larger number of visitors who access your site and leave immediately. Mobile internet gets faster and faster, but it is still valuable to make every effort in ensuring your site is fast to load up.


2. Online reviews follow-up

It’s very important that you monitor online feedback, and not just for restaurants and hotels on TripAdvisor or Agoda. Twitter is a hotbed for angry consumers to lash out at brands they feel are ambivalent to their needs, so invest time each day in searching for your own brand and keywords. Engage where anything is amiss.


3. Data and privacy protection

Regulators are getting tougher on data security and data protection. Consumers are also more aware of the issue following big data breaches at several large companies in the last few years, including PSN network and a couple of employment search database sites. For too long, digital marketers have taken personal data for granted, enjoying the benefits without securing it properly or thinking too much about privacy. Also don’t forget to publicize your efforts in improving data security, as it can function as an enticing USP.


4. Online chat-bots

As AI continues to improve, the usability and flexibility of chat-bots also gets better. Whilst people would typically prefer to speak to a human operator not a piece of code, they are immediate response and always-on, helping to resolve customer issues quickly; they’ll also continue to get better, as it’s a fairly “aged” technology now.


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blog 068 pr digital bangkok thailand

PR professionals can be the driving force for quality CSR

When families are finding it hard to make ends meet, public opinion can often turn against large corporations. Effective corporate communications can provide a reliable way in advocating and promoting an organization’s contribution to society. All this in an age where consumers are demanding that corporations do their bit and put in more to the society in which they operate.

As the larger hedge funds seem to be demanding more social appreciation from the companies they invest in, we may have reached a tipping point; a trend toward greater corporate social responsibility. It’s not just about profits any more.




  1. Promote volunteering. Companies can embed this philosophy in their teams even without spending any money. It also increases pride and togetherness amongst staff.


  1. Create a committee. An internal team put together to handle CSR matters can be invaluable. As well as developing events and calendars, it also grows leadership among staff.


  1. Enjoyment. Volunteering can feel like a privilege, rather than a duty. Consider creating an hours-in-lieu exchange for team members keen to volunteer.


  1. Community outreach. Encourage staff to step outside the company and out into the wider community. This is a great way to grow the company’s brand in the local area.


  1. Take their views into account. Aim to support charities or initiatives that staff already make donations to.


  1. Invite customers to join. This is a great way to show leadership within your sector, and also to foster stronger and more rewarding two-way relationships between staff and your customer organizations.


  1. Promote and show your efforts. Make sure that your contributions are put out there and spoken about, either via social media or with the more traditional photo caption press release.


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blog 067 pr digital bangkok thailand

How to tackle Facebook’s new algorithm to make your video pop

Make it live

Facebook’s latest algorithm prioritizes live video specifically. It is estimated that live videos typically get six times as many interactions compared to non-live posts. It is essential to understand this to maximise your efforts in delivering a channel mix.

Around half of live video is found via the news feed. It also offers massive scope for viral reposting. In the near future, innovations such as 360 degree video will serve to emphasize the importance of this.


Go for engagement

Due to years of complaints from users, Facebook now is pushing more personal content, stuff from family and friends, to people’s feeds. This was in response to Facebook’s decline through it evolving into a pointless stream of marketing messages which resulted in it losing users.

This type of content always delivers better engagement due to strong relevance, as an antithesis to fake news and spammy clickbait. So always focus on asking questions and looking for engagement.


Don’t forget paid media, part of PESO

Paid media still has some effective relevance. One thing to note is that if you’re boosting live, you need to ensure that there is enough time for results before the post “dies.”

Facebook has also introduced Live Broadcast, so if you plan to use it, let people know in advance so they are aware and are ready and waiting.

Remember always that organic engagement is the top priority as it draws the best placement via the algorithm. One of Facebook’s (few) key strengths is that it offers a high level of “targetization”.


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blog 066 pr digital bangkok thailand

Nonprofit organizations: 10 social media tips

1. Be the voice:

Focus on publishing articles that have been independently cited for their truth and thought leadership.

2. Stay within your tone:

Communication brands like TEDx are popular because they define their voice and continually serve audiences with the high quality defined with its parameters.

3. Video is key:

Well-produced, informative videos will keep people coming back for more and position you firmly on top of the pile.

4. Keep us posted:

Frequent posting and constant engagement are crucial for both growing audiences and retaining current followers.

5. Quality always:

Somewhat contrary to the above point, it’s sometimes better to focus on fewer high quality posts that just spamming out regularly.

6. Storytelling:

Stories focused on people are some of the most attractive for followers. They can also be used to convey your successes in a certain theatre or industry field.

7. Maximize social media spend:

Nonprofits are always tight on cash. You can still achieve some results for five bucks a day by using extremely targeted Facebook ad parameters.

8. Add a “Donate Now” button:

Facebook lets certain types of nonprofits place a “Donate Now” button on their FB page. There is no reason why you wouldn’t have this, even if results are slow.

9. Set a strategy:

Before committing anything to your feeds, use Excel to draft out calendar months so that one post leads to another, always with the aim of slowly building followers and engagement.

10. Monitor metrics:

Look for the most relevant ways to monitor and record both engagement and how this grows and is responded to over time.


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blog 064 pr digital bangkok thailand

KFC nails issues management and turns crisis into opportunity

KFC’s chain of outlets recently had a nightmare scenario for a fried chicken joint; they ran out of chicken. It was largely the result of a supplier side supply chain problem, but no doubt negatively amplified by the company’s ‘just in time’ planning mantra; something that food retailers and increasingly more FMCG companies will be familiar with.


Normally this would be both a mission critical disaster and a PR disaster all wrapped up in one. Instead, through extremely bold messaging design they managed to turn this awful situation into a social media hit.


KFC ran this really smart advert on full-page newspaper spreads in some of the UK’s biggest national daily tabloids. Through honesty, creativity and savvy consumer engagement, the ad, rather than infuriating loyal customers, actually put a positive spin on things. More than this, the brand was able to attract new customers to the fried chicken franchise through the viral nature of the ad being widely shared on line.


A majority of user comments were of the ilk, “fair play” and “hats off to KFC” – this serves as an amazing illustration of the power of PR, communication and messaging design.


The newspaper ad featured an admission of guilt whilst successfully relaying empathy to customers, demonstrating their agile approach to issues management, and winning some new brand advocates in the process.


They didn’t just get away with it. They knocked it out of the park.


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blog 064 pr digital bangkok thailand

When problems arise between agency and client in an ongoing relationship

PR agencies in every market in every country have clients who are extremely demanding and/or unreasonably difficult. Conversely, clients assume the agency is dithering rather than being committed to quick resolution and development of its communication plan.

This two-way misinterpretation is not helpful for either the client or the PR agency.

A 2015 study by the Association of National Advertisers (AHA) revealed that 87 percent of clients and 86 percent of agencies believe they have a highly effective working relationship that delivers value. Working closely together over a long period of time then would seem to be the most conducive approach.


Here are three things that can create problems:


  1. A lack of accountability from the agency side

Agency clients are demanding better reporting based on true metrics like lead generation, lead conversion and any sales opportunities that have materialized. As clients’ spend through outsourced PR can be a significant burden to the whole marketing budget, it is entirely reasonable to expect that KPIs and metrics are quickly and clearly reported.


  1. Poor consulting or information forwarding (on either side…)

Problems arise when not enough communication occurs between client and agency. This can be because the PR consultants are busy dealing with other things, or it could be that the client is unavailable for days or weeks at a time. Too much communication can also occur and is equally damaging; 10pm calls from clients trying to escalate urgent issues that they’ve just that moment thought of don’t help.


  1. Agency evolution to meet future demands of clients


As per the same AHA study, only 56 percent of clients “believe that agencies have the right talent to meet their needs over the next two years”.

It is incumbent on agencies to be constantly self-schooling in evolving technologies and new industries, and to hire staff capable of supporting this forward momentum to best serve client needs.


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