The importance of broadcast in PR isn’t old news

By Laura Burns

Nov 14, 2018

As the evolution of traditional media continues, and with the rise of online and the somewhat recent introduction of social media and influencers, it’s important for brands not to shift focus entirely to the new and shiny and to keep sight of the old, traditional and successful medium that is broadcast media.

With the development of social media comes a new set of KPIs and methods of measurement, but the stats and figures supporting broadcast viewership, both TV and radio, still stack up. Last month’s RAJAR figures cite that 89 per cent of the UK adult population still listen to radio for more than 20 hours every week, and more than three in five (63 per cent) of those aged 15+ in the UK listen to radio via a digital platform, whether that be online or in an app, every single week at home (70 per cent) or in the car (63 per cent).

There’s an argument to be had that it’s easier to consume information that is presented in an audio or video format by someone you can form a connection with, as opposed to when it’s words written by someone you have a lesser relationship with. The same RAJAR figures reveal that almost a third (32 per cent) of adult social media users receive updates from their favourite radio station or presenter, meaning that the rapport goes further than just the 20 hours of listening each week.

Broadcast opportunities are relevant for every client, from startup tech brands to charities and the big FMCG names. It could be proactively securing company profiling slots such as BBC Business Live’s Inside Track, having your client’s newest product included in ITV This Morning’s Christmas gift guide, or positioning your client as a key industry expert by reactively commenting on breaking news on the BBC News or Sky News.

For startups in particular, broadcast coverage reaches both consumers and potential future investors and it provides you (both client and agency) with the tools to share a great piece of visual coverage directly with stakeholders and social channels. It shows the industry that you’re serious about your company and that you’ve got the support behind you to reach the right people. As one of our clients put it recently, it shows prospective investors that you’re more than just seven kids in a room and that you’ve got the capabilities to take your business to the next level.

Positioning clients and their C-suite execs as experts and key spokespeople for industry news raises the brand profile within the sector, situates them in the middle of the conversation and of course gives your client’s CEO/ CTO a bit of an ego boost (and also reminds them why they sign off on the PR budget each quarter).

Broadcast coverage is often a nice to have, an additional bonus – but it doesn’t have to be that way. If stories are packaged and pitched in the right way and the PR has the right contacts, it can and should be included in the campaign KPIs from the start. Our broadcast division, led by former journalists from Sky News and BBC Radio, experienced broadcast PR professionals and senior publicists from the entertainment industry ensures that’s the case across the board for all campaigns going out the door. With recent successes with BBC Breakfast, 5 Live Wake Up To Money, Today Programme and Victoria Derbyshire it’s clear that it’s working.