Transcript The PUBLIC

 Public relations can help the organization take smart
risks and avoid the bad ones
Judith Rich
 No longer can retailers, manufacturers and service
providers simply respond to complaints from their
customers; sophisticated public relations techniques
must be applied to understand the needs of
consumers and solicit their comments
 There is increased awareness in knowledge and
Consumer Relations in focus
Consumer relations is the bridge between the
consumer and the manufacturer, providing the
right response when a multitude of things go
wrong and ultimately helping the company to
thrive under any situation
Teaming PR with Marketing
 PR and marketing work together to help an
organization respond to a very significant public – the
consumers of their products
 PR is involved in marketing by:
1. Promoting the value of unseen technology
2. Using current events to reshape attitudes
3. Increasing awareness of the product’s benefits
through relationship marketing, IMC etc
PR activities not covered in
 Internal publics such as employees, stockholders, and
 Reputation or image building
 External publics [other than consumers] such as
government and suppliers
 Crisis management
 Public opinion change and social issues
 Issues management
The starting point
 PR activities are introduced into marketing in the area
of consumer relations
 PR activities are integrated into the overall marketing
plans because no amount of PR can make up for a
inadequate distribution network; poorly taste food
 Always DELIGHT THE CUSTOMER – David Pogue
 Smart, thriving companies constantly listen to their
customers and act upon what they hear.
Applying PR techniques to Marketing
 Imagination is the limit when it comes to applying PR
techniques to marketing; hence you get clichés like
‘total solution provider’ and ‘innovative technology
 PR can help in the following areas:
1. Product and service design through informal
2. PR can help extend product life cycle by developing
events to support the products
3. PR, and the information provided can assist in
making marketing decision on product distribution
Continue in next slide
Applying PR techniques to Marketing
Ever thought of branded news?
4. Communication through media relations,
community relations, facility tour, event
5. The CEO becomes the marketing spokesperson
during special events as the launch of new product
line, crisis [Bill Gates & Microsoft antitrust suit in US]
6. Guerrilla tactics could come handy through usage of
nontraditional communication vehicles; sometimes
it can be hit-and-miss
7. Integrating disciplines of media relations, trade
shows, special events are useful [see next slide]
Challenges of Consumer Relations
 Lack of common sense by consumers
 Lack of understanding from consumers who used the
product wrongly yet blamed the manufacturer
 There is little manufacturer can do if safety
instructions are ignored
 Trust is all the PR man can bring to the issues
 Consumers are insatiable
Know your consumers
Three challenging indexes:
1. Your consumer might change traditional
consumption patterns
2. Economic and social shifts might open up new
3. Your brand may no longer resonate with your
PR and Consumer Affairs
Consumer information and education
Generally satisfied, but not always served
Unfair and deceptive practices
Handling consumer complaints
Integrating ‘click’ with the ‘brick’
The corporate liaison
Let us examine them bit by bit
Consumer information and education
 While it is agreed that consumers lack adequate
information for making purchasing decision, there is
the strong issue of consumer misuse of products
 A satisfied consumer will arithmetically inform others,
while a dissatisfied consumer will geometrically
inform others
 Consumers value message more if comes from the
media than from company representatives
Generally satisfied, but not always
 65% of consumers feel that businesses care more
about selling them products that already exist, rather
than coming up with something that really fits
consumers’ lifestyle
 Mass produced product do not work and behave like
those that are custom designed
Unfair and deceptive practices
 Damage occur to buyer-seller relationship when
products and services are promoted using deceptive
and unfair means
 Voluntary self regulation is important
 Industry watchers should equally assist
 PR practitioners need to be careful not to mislead or
dupe the gatekeepers to the consumers – the media
Handling consumer complaints
 To effectively handle consumer complaints, note the following:
1. The complaint should be solicited
2. All complaints should be logged when received
3. The complainant should be notified at receipt and progress
made so far
4. Action to resolve the complaint should follow quickly
5. Affected company personnel should be notified promptly and
their response monitored
6. Ongoing analysis of any complaint should be done to forestall
future occurrences
Integrating ‘click’ with the ‘brick’
 Don’t be lost in the technology malady, where the
‘click’ is the real business
 Emails and company websites are the new means of
contact, therefore they should have an autoreply
 New technologies are changing how people do
business and relate with each other
 So set up device to monitor failures from the ‘click’ so
it doesn’t ‘brick’ up
The corporate liaison
 The consumer affairs role is becoming the that of
consumer spokesperson to management
 They solicit consumer opinion and make management
aware of the effects various decisions would have on
the consumers
 The in house ombudsman must balance the needs of
the actual customers, the demands of consumer
activists, and the goals of the organization
Is the consumer really king?
How loyal are the consumer to the brand?
What is branded news?
Provide answers to the attached flashcard items
See Case Study in page 273