April 5, 2023
Institutional Trust Continues to Erode
Across institutions, trust is eroding. While trust remains important among executives, employees, and consumers, recent surveys reveal differences in how they each define it. New data also indicate business is trusted more than other institutions like government or media. A major contributor to mistrust is the ease with which disinformation spreads. Mistrust causes real harm—more doctors are reporting declines in patient trust and the dire health consequences of misinformation.
Some tech companies are taking notice by adding new features to help users verify online information. But with some AI chatbots implementing advertising, more may question response accuracy. Earning public trust begins with media, and PR professionals can help journalists by providing accurate information. Media members can also feature transparency without adding complexity to their stories.
Agencies are Adapting to a Shifting Landscape
Communications and PR agencies continue adapting to changes in consumer and market behavior. Tech volatility has strained advertising teams already stretched thin, leaving more agencies adjusting to the backlog. Generative AI has transformed content creation, while younger generations are demanding increased transparency and execution of company values, leading to more challenges for today’s consultancies.
To meet these challenges, agencies must keep moving forward by investing in communications software and leveraging new tools to build and sustain effective hybrid teams. To retain talent, firms should work with employees to create intentional plans for career development. On the client side, setting expectations is always important, and fostering meaningful relationships will pay dividends long-term.
Events are Back and More In-Demand
Largely absent the last few years, in-person events have returned with much fanfare. As companies consider hybrid work options, gatherings give remote workers opportunities to connect and learn from colleagues. The latest trade show insights indicate a strong preference for in-person conferences versus virtual ones. At events, attendees are more engaged than ever and expect a personalized experience.
Events also allow communicators to engage with new technology firsthand before presenting ideas to clients. This year’s SXSW (South by Southwest) festival provided participants plenty as brands showed off new experiences in augmented and virtual reality. Ragan’s recent social media conference emphasized authenticity and understanding demographics to determine digital strategies.
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