Overcoming 4 strategic challenges PR pros have faced in 2020

by | Oct 21, 2020 | Public Relations

2020 has brought a number of challenges to everyone, and PR professionals are no different. Between your normal duties and crisis communications, you’ve encountered some unique challenges. Here are some of the most common ones—and tips to help combat them.

Personal health

While you’re probably used to a stressful work life as a PR professional, 2020 has stretched many thinner than ever. From juggling your home life and work life, to managing high-pressure communications for your employer, you’re probably under even more stress than usual. Stress lowers your immune system, which isn’t what you want to have happen in the middle of a pandemic. Boost your immune system to protect yourself and keep your work going smoothly by incorporating some green superfoods powder into your diet. Try to take some time to exercise, even if it’s just a walk around your neighborhood, and find ways to relax and unwind at the end of the day to lower your stress levels.

Breaking through the noise

2020 has brought a wide variety of social and political changes and challenges, which means the internet is more crowded than ever with social media posts and news headlines vying for people’s attention. This can make it difficult for you to get your organization’s message across, so it might be time to look for alternative methods to do this. Find what makes your organization unique and focus on that. Decide if your company is going to take a political stance, and then work to make that as authentic and relatable as possible. Whether you decide to directly get involved or not, make sure that your organization’s voice is staying professional, respectful, and positive. Figure out what your audience wants to hear from you, and try to give that to them.

Showing the results of your efforts

It can be difficult to find ways to measure the results of your PR efforts, but it’s important that you find some way to do that so that you can prove that what you’re doing has value. It sounds harsh, but often PR pros have to convince executives that their strategies are effective and necessary. Especially in an economic downturn where companies are trying to pinch pennies, it’s important that you have a system in place that tracks the value of your efforts and allows you to clearly share that with the powers that be. This might require you to be more intentional and assertive about teaching them what you do, but it will be worth it in the long run for all parties involved.

Managing your to-do list

PR and communications jobs seem to come with more and more responsibilities each year. This is especially true in 2020. Not only are you having to create and adjust your strategies to fit unprecedented situations, but those in your organization who approve your work before it goes out are probably struggling to keep up as well. It can quickly turn into a vicious cycle of executives failing to get back to you on a project in a timely way, setting you behind on the next one, setting them behind again.

Combat this by creating a streamlined system for approving projects and press releases. Line out which ones need to go to which people and set timelines for everyone involved. Make sure everyone agrees on these standards and then stick to them. While it may not guarantee that everything will be done on time, it does set expectations, which makes it easier for you to follow up on outstanding items.

While every year brings its challenges, 2020 has brought an especially unique set, especially for PR professionals. Instead of allowing yourself to become totally overwhelmed, look for solutions to your problems, ask for help, and take care of yourself. Take a deep breath and remind yourself that everyone is struggling alongside you, and that all you need to do is the best that you can.

Brett Clawson
Brett is a 43-year-old father of 2 boys with a degree in Business Management. In his free time, he enjoys learning about emerging business trends and writing about how to incorporate them into new and existing businesses.