PR for Architects | #BeKnown with Epistle OPD
Tanya Khanna, Founder, Epistle Communications and Sana Jhamb, Director, Epistle Communications.
We held a live Instagram session with Sana Jhamb – Director – PR and Business Development of Epistle communications and Tanya Khanna - Founder of Epistle Communications. The session aimed to help architects and designers develop an effective outreach strategy to #BeKnown at the right time, and to the right people by providing strategic PR tips about architecture in particular. The session kicked off with an explanation of what PR really is. Public Relations implies communication to the outside. It is what you would put out to the public for clients to see and it is the art of communicating a brand. Good PR entails the creative strategy behind marketing a brand.
There is a tendency to confuse media outreach with PR and media relations is just one aspect of PR. Public Relations develops the story while Media Relations broadcasts it. On the whole, knowing the difference is essential to creating an efficient strategy.
You, as a designer should first identify their main goal for using PR as a tool - whether is it to
showcase ideas to achieve visibility or if it’s to engage with the community to establish yourself.
It should be used further to build credibility and to help evolve your skills in a continuous and sustained process. Before PR is used, Designers need to:
● Identify your story.
● Identify the platform: It needs to align with your narrative and USP, as well as where
your target demographic lies; and
● Identify your goal: The PR strategy you use needs to be in line with what the Designer
wants to accomplish.
Furthermore, the importance of defining a story and developing a narrative cannot be
overstated. Visually appealing and relevant Imagery to support your story is also crucial for
people to connect with your content. Imagery can involve something like a like before-and-after photo to showcase a transformation. The right type of photography is necessary to
communicate the story around your idea.
PR can also help you as a brand to tell your stories. It helps brands identify their target audience and to select the right communication channels. It establishes thought leadership and let’s brands build authentic relationships.
Additionally, writing an effective Press Release can be very important. It should be a crisp 200-300 word write-up where the “big idea” should take precedence. If your project has reinvented something or addressed a larger issue - that is what needs to be talked about. A catchy headline, a good flow of information, and a crisp and concise body of text can go a long way.
Pitching to online and print media helps define right target audience. You need to stay updated, be aware of what editorial themes of different magazines stick to, and know their editorial calendar to time and strategize content. Write opinion-based pieces that are strategically aligned with the platform you are targeting, and send different pieces to different magazines to increase your chance of being featured. Further, keep a tab on overarching and trending topics that magazines, online platforms, and newspapers are talking about and send your piece at the relevant time.
To conclude, the key takeaways from this session were the importance of the creation of a
cohesive story and narrative, creating visually appealing imagery, having a punchy tagline and a crisp write-up, knowing your target audience, and knowing what to send where and how. Because at the end of the day, people don’t buy goods and services, they buy stories and magic.