In the past, Public Relations would simply mean the use of communication to persuade the public. Essentially, this was a one-way channel involving the organization informing the public. In today’s digital world, however, Public Relations is now a two-way communication system, as the role of the consumer is ever more increasing and their covert and overt nuances shape brand communications.
Interestingly, before the 2000s, media consumption habits remained virtually unchanged. People got their news and entertainment from the TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, and other traditional forms of media. But then the internet and tech boom happened, and within a few years, people could stream music, videos, and movies from the comfort of their homes. Soon, people, especially millennials, were ditching old and traditional methods, giving rise to the cord-cutting generation.
This shift in media consumption has affected many allied industries. This meant that organizations and brands needed to move with the times and adjust their communications approach and channels. For instance, marketing strategies used to include platforms like text messaging, Radio and TVs as the main ad platforms. However, with changing media consumption habits, marketers have had to rethink their content creation strategies to include platforms like Facebook and Instagram that didn’t exist a couple of years ago. This fast pace of innovation and digitization has changed the game in the Public Relations Industry.
We live in one of the most creative times in the media and communications industry. This is not surprising because the media currently sits at the intersection of people, technology and marketing. Hence, the reason professionals in the PR industry are constantly on their toes; mastering the critical skill of creativity. In recent years, the Nigerian media market has earned a reputation as one of the fastest-growing in Africa. But the existence of market gaps in the industry has led to an increase in the need for continuous problem solving; which revolves solely around creative insights to find suitable solutions to these gaps.
Although the PR industry in Nigeria has grown over the years, as it is commonplace to hear industry professionals talk about ‘disruption’; simply put, you either disrupt or be disrupted. Agencies must lead the charge in coming up with creative solutions to meet clients’ ROI and consumers’ ever-changing needs. There are still challenges to overcome and gaps to cover when it comes to creativity in the industry. Creativity in the Public Relations industry is all about challenging the status quo and value creation for clients.