The Top 3 PR Trends in Singapore for 2020

In an Institute of Public Relations of Singapore (IPRS) survey of Singapore’s top PR professionals, AI and data analytics came out as the key technologies impacting public relations in 2020. These technologies are expected to further disrupt an industry already struggling to deal with changing media consumption patterns caused by the disintermediation brought about by social media. Leveraging big data, AI and data analytics hold the promise of not only creating content that is more effective, but at a rate that is faster and cheaper.

Despite the challenge of competing with AI in content creation, Singapore’s PR professionals believe that PR will continue to be relevant to Singapore businesses in 2020. This is because, at its essence, PR is about human relationships and people-to-people communications and interactions cannot be replaced by technology. Additionally, while AI can derive “insights” from data, AI cannot interpret emotions and hence PR executives are still needed to help management teams make sense of the insights and create the appropriate narratives to guide leaders to deliver them.

The Top 3 PR Trends for 2020 identified are:

#1: Integrate Online and Offline. At some point in the consumer journey, face-to-face interactions will be necessary to build relationships. Thus while AI can help create content that will cut through the noise and raise awareness for your company, it will not be able to connect with your public. Having an integrated online and offline strategy is therefore critical in any strategic marketing or PR plans.

#2: Leverage Data Analytics. Data analytics, like AI, are tools to be harnessed. So, even as companies embrace the power of data analytics to help them make sense of the complicated information environment more efficiently, companies need to also layer human knowledge and experience onto those insights to make them work more effectively. This because humans are complex and, while data can reveal past patterns, it cannot effectively predict future patterns.

#3 Be Human. Interestingly, as technology is beginning to automate almost all aspects of our lives, consumers are pushing back. Although consumers appreciate the convenience of technology, they do not want to interact with a machine and would rather communicate with another human being. In 2020, companies that use technology as an enabler, instead of as a replacement, will find that they are better able to build relationships with their selected publics. The same goes for communications. It is the human touch that will matter.

As the Singapore economy enters 2020 facing headwinds brought about by the US-China trade war, and the onset of the Wuhan Coronavirus, businesses need to up their game to stay ahead of the competition. As you develop your PR strategy, do keep the above 3 PR trends in mind.