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The PR director of the future – answering the difficult questions

Posted by Debby Penton on 25th November 2015

Brand communications functions are going through a period of rapid change. The traditional silos of advertising, marketing and PR are breaking down and are under pressure to become fully integrated teams. For PR, and the PR director in particular, this shift prompts some fundamental questions, questions that PRs have tended to shy away from answering.

Now more than ever these questions need answering – what is PR’s role in an integrated ‘comms’ function? Does “PR” even mean anything any more? What does the PR director of the future look like?

If PR directors cannot answer those questions then the CMO will be more than happy to eat their lunch.

To help find some answers we have spoken to some of our influential friends in the media and in senior PR and tech comms roles. We really wanted to get to grips with what the PR director of the future will look like, to address some of the threats they face, but also to look at the opportunities they have in a world of integrated comms.

For many organisations marketing has come to dominate comms and PR is often seen as a secondary discipline, but speaking to our panel of experts it is clear that that doesn’t have to be the case. This is not a time for “woe is me” doom and gloom, it’s time to grasp the nettle and to demonstrate the unique value PR brings to the marketing mix.

As a result we will be publishing a series of blogs and reports over the next few months bringing together the collective insight and advice of our industry colleagues to help show the way forward for the PR director of the future.

Our first report looks at how PR directors can stake their claim in the marketing mix and presents three clear action areas:

– Align with the business, not just the CEO

– Seek more opportunities to collaborate with the marketing team

– ‘Skill up’ and take control of owned media channel

The report, Finding PR’s place in the marketing mix, is available to download now.

To read it, as well as the first of our blogs based on in-depth interviews with our expert panellists, click here.

We will be adding lots more blogs and content over the next few months as we continue to seek out the answers to the key questions facing the PR industry, so give us a follow on Twitter to make sure you don’t miss out – @wildfirepr

Are you a PR director and think you might like to contribute? Get in touch –

Debby Penton

Motivated, competitive and highly experienced, Debby drives excellence across the agency and leads by example, going the extra mile to create stand-out campaigns and a dynamic agency culture. As CEO, Debby champions a new breed of PR that meets the evolving communication needs of today’s tech companies.