With excitement in the air as Jurassic World is set to open this weekend in South Africa (playing the nostalgia and ‘Chris Pratt now has abs’ cards heavily in its marketing campaign – and rightly so!), it got me thinking about how PR & Communications has evolved over the past five years, both globally and locally, and why some consultants are in danger of essentially becoming ‘extinct’, if they fail to keep up with fast-changing communication channels and trends.

Public Relations and communications agency

All is not lost however, as there’s still time to avoid your personal ‘ice age’ and here are nine handy signs to spot a ‘PR Dinosaur’:

1. “Facebook? What’s that?” Yet to open a personal FB account and still has more friends in real life than on social media;
2. Still writes 1 000 word ‘press’ releases…In 2015, people are time precious – for example, it is estimated that website visitors average less than 15 seconds per page on a desktop (and it is even less time on mobile devices). This means outstanding (and short) copy, coupled with compelling imagery, are key components to capturing reader interest;
3. Still uses Pritt™ (for cutting and mounting clippings);
4. Doesn’t believe in the (growing) effectiveness of visual storytelling (e.g. video, infographics, interactive content - ePR);
5. Ignores influential bloggers when developing a ‘targeted’ campaign strategy;
6. Still refers to ‘through-the-line’ (an advertising term popular in the early ‘00s) when presenting client strategies, rather than integrated communications strategy;
7. Thinks SEO stands for Spam at Every Opportunity (it doesn’t). Search Engine Optimisation is key to making a client’s website relevant: amplifying content and securing valuable, natural backlinks that helps target audiences find information about a clients’ products and services online;
8. Obsessed with advertising value equivalents (AVEs) on media placements (unlike clients who require actual campaign measurables such as a spike in website traffic, more customer calls, increased share of voice etc.);
9. Still rocking a BlackBerry.

As a final note (if you only remember one thing), it’s critical that PR, social, marketing and advertising are all intertwined when developing an integrated communication campaign for your client. Don't become extinct in 2015!