To reposition the Public Relations practice in Nigeria, Kelechi Nwosu, a seasoned advertising and public relations professional has called for a deliberate approach to re-organise the modus operandi of the practice to ensure that the public perception of the profession is accurate and favourable.
While speaking to MARKETING EDGE, the advertising expert stated that PR is highly misunderstood noting that the Public Relations profession has evolved, hence practitioners are expected to align themselves with the current realities.
He said, “One of the challenges I think we have is that sometimes, PR is misunderstood by so many people and so many clients”.
According to him, the misconception of PR emanates from the inter-relatedness of the various disciplines under the Integrated Marketing Communication Industry. He opined that the lines distinguishing the various professions have somewhat been eliminated.
In his words: “It does appear that way because traditionally people are thinking but you see the disciplines have become all blurred. They have become all mixed. So, Citi Bank gets a bike or a bicycle and offers it to people to take a ride and then brands it “if you take a ride, you can park somewhere in New York or anywhere else. Is that PR or advertising? It is everything”.
Speaking further, the advertising juggernaut noted that “We just have to pull out of the traditional way we think about PR. PR has evolved as well. There are many streams of PR. Many years ago, when we were in school, some parts of advertising were considered a tool for PR, to build the institutional reputation. We must get off this discipline, these silos”.
He urged the National Institute of Public Relations, NIPR to intensify efforts to reposition the PR profession for growth.
“NIPR needs to do a bit more. They need to inspire more case studies, conversation, more inter-discipline conversations just like the people in advertising as well because the disciplines are inter-related” he said.
According to him, PR requires lots of creativity and practitioners need to inspire young people who are coming into the profession.