Commssolver http://commssolver.ie Sun, 04 Mar 2018 22:58:44 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://commssolver.ie/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/copyright-150x150.png Commssolver http://commssolver.ie 32 32 Top Issues Facing the PR Industry in Ireland http://commssolver.ie/top-issues-facing-pr-industry-ireland/ Fri, 02 Mar 2018 18:46:32 +0000 http://commssolver.ie/?p=2445 The post Top Issues Facing the PR Industry in Ireland appeared first on Commssolver.

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TOP ISSUES FACING THE PR INDUSTRY IN IRELAND

For their special PR report, Irish Marketing Journal asked me, along with other industry leaders, for my thoughts on some of the key issues facing the PR business in Ireland. The Q&A format is ideal for summarising thoughts on sometimes complex issues. Take a look to see if you agree with me (and let me know if you don’t)

The clients’ view of how PR fits into their communications/marketing strategy in 2017 – does the focus on digital advertising detract from the resources available for public relations activity?

The difference between commercial Success and Failure can boil down to Good and Bad communications. Clients understand this implicitly. It makes no sense to invest thousands or millions in developing a new initiative, brand or service and then letting it down by paying scant attention to the communications needed to promote it. Owned, Earned and Paid social media are now an integral part of the PR mix. In my experience, digital advertising is funded separately and is not a drain on the financial commitment given to PR.

The extent to which companies see PR as a commodity, using firms as an
outsourced partner to handle specific elements of their marketing while
executing other tasks in-house.

In the Corporate and B2B space in which I operate PR is not seen as a commodity discipline. There’s a definite view that PR and reputation management is a very particular skill that’s best handled in an expert outside resource. I was once nick-named Commssolver by a client because I was constantly being brought into firms to solve communications issues that hadn’t been handled well internally. That happens much less now as I’m involved at the start of the NPD / launch process so I can help to shape the narrative, develop the necessary plans and avoid any potential mishaps.

What PR firms have done to ensure their employees reflect the diversity of their clients – are ethnic minorities and older people sufficiently represented in the industry?

I’d like to think that the industry is working on the basis that it’s only Talent that matters and that ethnicity or age is irrelevant in that case.

Many professional services firms have recognised that billing by the hour is
no longer sustainable – have PR charging structures become more flexible?

Time is the most valuable commodity I offer as a professional communications expert and I charge appropriately. If I don’t respect the value of my time, why should I expect anyone else to? While hourly rates may be a more common aspect to crisis communications nevertheless having a view of how much time a project or campaign will take to deliver has to be calculated carefully, billed accordingly and reflected in a retainer or daily rate.

The economy is growing but Brexit looms large – how has the upturn impacted
you and/or your clients and has the uncertainty surrounding the UK affected
the PR industry in Ireland?

Certainly the PR market is buoyant currently and Ireland Inc is getting on with business as usual – I think that it’s too early to assess the potential impact of Brexit as we still don’t know its shape

Has any individual PR campaign stood out for you in 2017?

There was lots of really great work in Ireland worthy of mention. There’s too much to choose from so I’ll kop out my mentioning a notable and clever Healthcare / OTC campaign from the UK. It caught my attention in terms of its creativity, insight and appeal to a 16 -25 market and that’s the #CondomEmoji campaign created by Premier for the Durex brand. It tapped into the popularity and engagement that Emoji’s generate and helped position Durex as a key player in the worldwide fight against HIV and AIDS.

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Where Next For The PR Industry in Ireland http://commssolver.ie/next-pr-industry-ireland/ Fri, 02 Mar 2018 18:35:04 +0000 http://commssolver.ie/?p=2436 The post Where Next For The PR Industry in Ireland appeared first on Commssolver.

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WHERE NEXT FOR THE PR INDUSTRY IN IRELAND?

The future of PR lies in its past. With several of the bigger names in the business intent on morphing into management consultant / advertising / digital agencies, a clear space is being created in the PR landscape for independent, niche businesses (such as mine), to thrive. The use of the word “independent” is important. Having previously worked for some of the world’s biggest PR firms, not being aligned to an international behemoth is a big plus in the Irish market.

Why? Because when you don’t have to consider the operational and revenue agenda of a multi – tentacled business you can operate in a smarter thinking, more nimble way. Clients then get access to the type of honest, unfettered advice that rings “true” and which helps to forge strong, long-lasting and collaborative working relationships.

In the bright shiny world of 2018 and beyond, so-called “traditional” PR skills of the past will once again become highly prized. For instance, “Storytelling” (the most overused and misappropriated word of the moment) is a core PR talent. In an era where Content is King, the capacity to identify what makes a story and then write compelling, engaging narrative that fits both the shorter reading span of a digital or tabloid medium and long form broadsheet stories will make experienced PR practitioners even more invaluable.

And simply because media continues to change doesn’t mean that the practice of media relations will. The ability to sell, haggle, negotiate and cajole is what brings stories and campaigns to life – and that’s experience that can never be replaced by an algorithm.

The other hot button issue for the PR business – Pricing – will become less contentious. Thankfully, and in a very welcome change, the industry seems to have divested itself of the bottom feeders who slashed fees to uneconomic and unsustainable levels. And there’s definitely a different mindset at play when it comes to price. In the Corporate, B2B and B2C sectors in which I operate, there’s a healthy respect for the value (and cost) of building and sustaining positive reputation and credible public profile. So, while my offer is not based on being the Cheapest, it’s got a lot to doing with being the Best. Besides, if I don’t value the professional service I provide why should I expect a client to do so?

Millennial Fatigue. You’ll be glad to know that the current fixation with Millennials will subside when everyone remembers that the real spending power lies with other demographics. And lastly, while the white heat of Digital has diminished as it becomes an integral part of every marketing solution, much work needs to be done on measurement and the impact (or not) of “social influencers”. Now, if we could only debunk some of the hysteria around “Data”………….

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Irish Radio celebrates its 100th birthday today http://commssolver.ie/irish-radio-celebrates-its-100th-birthday-today-first-broadcast-during-1916-rising-tune-in-for-evocative-broadcast-experience/ Mon, 25 Apr 2016 15:15:34 +0000 http://commssolver.ie/?p=220 The post Irish Radio celebrates its 100th birthday today appeared first on Commssolver.

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First broadcast during 1916 Rising; tune in for evocative broadcast experience

The dramatic story of the birth of Irish radio during the 1916 Rising will be re-enacted on air simultaneously by 37 radio stations nationwide on Monday, April 25 at 5.30pm, one hundred years to the original date and exact time of the declaration of the Irish Republic, Ireland’s first broadcast to the nation and the world. In a joint initiative between RTE Radio and the Independent Broadcasters of Ireland (IBI) a highly evocative 80 second morse code themed radio experience titled “The Sound of Sixteen” imagines the battling sounds and dangerous atmosphere of the times. Devised by Dublin based creative agency Boys and Girls (www.boysandgirls.ie), it also reprises the morse code message written by James Connolly and transmitted by Marconi operator David Burke.

That first Easter Tuesday message read:” Irish Republic declared in Dublin today. Irish troops have captured city and are in full possession. Enemy cannot move in city. The whole country rising.”

The broadcast took place 190 metres from the GPO at what was then The Wireless School of Telegraphy at 10-11 Sackville Street (now O’Connell Street). The full story of the drama that unfolded around the build up to the first broadcast (and subsequently) is told at www.thesoundofsixteen.ie

Niamh O’Shea, Sales Manager, RTE Radio said: ”The first broadcast was the brainchild of one of the leaders of the Rising, Joseph Mary Plunkett, a wireless expert who recognised the power of radio. He was clearly a visionary because, from its initial start, radio has become a central and much loved part of the Irish experience. It informs our national discourse and is entertaining, engaging, inspiring and maybe sometimes infuriating. Rarely ignored, for many of us it’s an always on background to our daily lives”

Lisa Ní Choisdealbha, Executive Director, IBI, said: ”This commemorative radio experience reminds us of why radio is such a powerful medium in term of its reach and ability to tell a story in a highly distinctive manner. The inaugural broadcast was apparently heard by boats in the Atlantic, stations in Germany and even by Japanese fisherman. Heard within Ireland it was a credible way to connect the new Republic to the national and international community. That sensibility continues to this day – radio gives us access to innumerable memories and experiences, making us feel connected to fellow Irish citizens on a daily basis and to an even broader international community.”

83% of Irish adults listen to the radio daily with people listening for over 4 hours a day.

“A morse code message is a powerful hearing experience, brilliantly conveyed by the medium. Our agency philosophy of “Daring Simplicity” lends itself well to the creative execution of the start of Irish radio as embellishment is needed on this tale of courage and ingenuity”; said Rory Hamilton, Creative Director and partner at Boys and Girls.

The Story of the First Broadcast

• Joseph Mary Plunkett had the idea to bypass British censorship by obtaining wireless transmission apparatus and broadcasting the news of the rising to the

• As a result, the Volunteers accessed the wireless transmission equipment from The Wireless School of Telegraphy, which had been sealed by the British Military after the outbreak of World War 1 in 1914.

• The aerial for Ireland’s first radio broadcast was erected on the roof of The Wireless School of Telegraphy. The men erecting the aerial came under constant enemy sniper fire, ultimately forcing them to retreat for cover and finish construction during the dark hours of Easter Monday night.

• The ‘broadcast’ element was somewhat of a happy accident. As the receiving apparatus was inoperative, it wasn’t possible to send a point-to-point transmission, i.e. get in direct contact with a ship or station. Therefore, the message was sent out as a diffused broadcast on the commercial wavelength, in the hope that some ship would hear it and relay the news to America.

• Boats in the Atlantic, stations in Germany picked up the broadcast (and it’s even claimed to have been heard by fishermen off the coast of Japan), but the first listener was quite possibly a British naval vessel docked in Dun Laoghaire. An officer on board then promptly informed his commanding officer who, by all accounts, sent the HMY Helga up the Liffey to attack the position. By Wednesday afternoon shellfire from the Helga began to cause severe structural damage to the Wireless School, and the Volunteers had to evacuate the position.

• A listener from the Isle of Mann, who picked up the broadcast using personal transmission, promptly informed his local authorities of the rebellion in Dublin. The local police took note of his news, and then promptly threw him in jail for violating the Defence of the Realm Act, which prohibited the use of any personal transmission equipment.

• One of the Irish Volunteers, who helped erect the aerials on the rooftop of 10-11 Sackville Street, was famed Abbey actor Arthur Shields. Shields would later move to Hollywood where he acted in various Hollywood movies, including ‘The Quiet Man’ alongside John Wayne.

• ‘How Green was My Valley’, the movie that won five Oscars in 1951, also starred two actors who fought on separate sides of the Easter Rising – Arthur Shields and John Loder (aka William John Muir Lowe). Loder was the son of General William Henry Muir Lowe, and was pictured with his father as Padraig Pearse gave his surrender after the Rising was quashed.

Credits for “The Sound of Sixteen”

Creative Director: Rory Hamilton
Art Director: Laurence O’Byrne
Copywriter: Eoin Conlon
Designer: Shane O’Riordan
Digital Lead: Shane Casey
Developer: Leandro Costa
Account Manager: David Carter

Sound Design: Gareth Avril
Voice Over: Ian Lloyd Anderson
Retoucher: Alexis Goodwin/Happy Finish

For further information:
David O’Brien, Communications and Reputation Consultant
5 Fitzwilliam Square East, Dublin 2
M: 087 2208636 T: 01 649 9025[/builder_content]

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David Cameron and his Panama Dilemma http://commssolver.ie/david-cameron-and-his-panama-dilemma/ Thu, 14 Apr 2016 10:00:58 +0000 http://commssolver.ie/?p=324 The post David Cameron and his Panama Dilemma appeared first on Commssolver.

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What a pickle David Cameron got himself into on the publication of the so-called Panama Papers. It’s all so unnecessary – but he knows that already.

Before entering politics he was in the communications business so he’s no doubt aware of the phrase “if you’re explaining, you’re losing” – a perfect summation of the dynamic of handing an issue.

So, whenever you find yourself in the eye of a storm on a story such as this where papers from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca showed that Cameron’s father Ian had established an off-shore investment trust, you have two options –Fight or Flight.

The Fight option (and one I would always recommend) is to confront the story openly, transparently and quickly to either dissolve its initial impact or to create space and time for further investigation into the matter at hand and ultimately settle the story.
The Flight one – mistakenly taken by Cameron – is to run from the story and be piecemeal in your approach to answering it. As a result, something which could and should have been a one news cycle wonder became a week long trauma of obfuscation, followed by a “Mea Culpa, I could have done better” TV interview before the final revelation of income earned from Blairmore Holdings. His reputation has taken a hit when it absolutely didn’t need to. He did nothing illegal, Revenue were aware of the matter and he had paid his due taxes.

So how to explain his mis-step on this matter?
I think that it’s a classic case of the Emotional winning over the Rational.
One of the most appealing aspects of David Cameron’s character is the widely reported assertion that politics for him is not a “be all, end all” consuming passion that it is for many of his contemporaries including Boris Johnson and George Osborne. Therefore, one can imagine that he may have felt that (with a life as public as his) delving into a private family matter concerning the perfectly legitimate actions of his much loved late father was an intrusive step too far. Hence the gradual, initially resistant response to the media on the Panama papers.

However, while I understand that sensibility, crisis and issues management can be a brutal business and is not for the faint hearted. And that’s why Rational should win over Emotional every time.

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TO THE I.F.A; STOP DIGGING AND START RE-BUILDING http://commssolver.ie/to-the-i-f-a-stop-digging-and-start-re-building/ Mon, 30 Nov 2015 10:03:30 +0000 http://commssolver.ie/?p=326 What a sad spectacle to see the once mighty Irish Farmers Association imploding in a manner that reminds me of the phrase “death by a thousand cuts”. From a communications perspective, it’s beginning to put the debacle of Irish Water in the shade. Reporting on the story in Saturday’s Irish Times (November 28) journalist Eoin…

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What a sad spectacle to see the once mighty Irish Farmers Association imploding in a manner that reminds me of the phrase “death by a thousand cuts”.

From a communications perspective, it’s beginning to put the debacle of Irish Water in the shade.

Reporting on the story in Saturday’s Irish Times (November 28) journalist Eoin Burke Kennedy opens with “It’s a basic tenet of corporate communications that if you’ve got bad news you get it all out at once.” He’s absolutely right. Why?

Because if you don’t take that approach you get treated to what’s happened at the I.F.A. during the week. Namely, one shock (former General Secretary Pat Smith’s salary and departure), followed by the shock of President Eddie Downey’s resignation and then the Richter scale reverberations of him signing off on a €2 million severance package for Mr Smith that’s now being stoutly disputed by the organisation.

And if that’s not bad enough, you then get the descent into a Punch and Judy show of claim and counter claim, of who knew what and when – all played out in the national media. Meantime, the people who apparently really matter to the I.F.A. – the claimed 90,000 members – look on aghast.

So how does the organisation begin to heal itself? The first thing is to take control of the story and stop it spiralling further out of control. Then, start listening to whoever is advising you.

Simultaneously, former IFA economist Con Lucey – the man now cast in the role of most trusted person in the organisation – needs every help and resource to complete a report for publication in the shortest period possible.

Next up is taking a bold step that begins to put an end to the on-going saga.

And fairly or unfairly, it’s my opinion that the I.F.A. Executive Council needs to step down and transition immediately to a new management team. And it’s not about optics. Quite the contrary – it’s about substance. It’s highly likely that Con Lucey’s report will lay bare previously unknown current and legacy issues on pay and remuneration, raising new questions in the process.

That being the case, there’s one simple question that will then asked. What were the Executive Council doing presiding over lavish payments? And, if they didn’t know, what’s the point of them in the first place? As result, their collective position will be untenable.

And a final thought – what is it about the word transparency that is toxic for so many prominent Irish organisations?

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Eircom and the fallacy of re-branding http://commssolver.ie/eircom-and-the-fallacy-of-re-branding/ Sat, 10 Oct 2015 10:06:21 +0000 http://commssolver.ie/?p=328 And with one leap they were free”…….. well, not quite if you happen to be the former Eircom. Now glossily renamed eir and with an apparent €16 million re-branding budget to cast an advertising and promotional spell to make us forget the former brand, it’s a trick that only works if the gloss matches the…

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And with one leap they were free”…….. well, not quite if you happen to be the former Eircom.

Now glossily renamed eir and with an apparent €16 million re-branding budget to cast an advertising and promotional spell to make us forget the former brand, it’s a trick that only works if the gloss matches the customer experience.

And unless things have changed dramatically in the past few weeks, that’s simply not the case.

As someone who has only recently managed to disentangle himself as a former Eircom / eir customer, I’ve been treated to a level of customer service that, if it wasn’t so inept, would make for a great Father Ted script.

Amongst the litany of silliness, I’ve been sent a rebate cheque with no explanation of what it was for or how the weird looking figure was arrived at; when I set up the account originally I received no documentation welcoming me to Eircom or giving me my account details (They did however manage to send their billing information promptly), different technicians arrived on different days unable to fix matters as I wasn’t “updated on the online system.”

Weeks later and after many frustrating conversations, the newly installed additional telephone line had a distinctive buzzing background noise that made it un-useable and an immediate fault complaint. So, eight to ten weeks of this nonsense, engaging with an utterly dysfunctional customer service process and with mobile phone bills escalating on calls that were typically 50 minutes long, I had had enough.

The final straw came when I asked for contact details for whoever was responsible for Customer Service so I could make a complaint I was told it wasn’t possible to give me those details. After that I admitted defeat.

In 2015 when every business is rightly focused on customer acquisition and retention, offering a “best in class” experience of their brand / service / utility is an absolute must, the former Eircom falls very, very wide of the mark.

And being called eir doesn’t change that.

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Welcome Bernard Byrne, AIB’s new media star http://commssolver.ie/welcome-bernard-byrne-aibs-new-media-star/ Tue, 11 Aug 2015 10:07:21 +0000 http://commssolver.ie/?p=330 As I’ve alluded to previously, there’s few good corporate interviewees in Ireland – especially on radio and particularly when it comes to the heads of major businesses. Over trained and tightly scripted they present a bland version of themselves that’s characterless and inoffensive. The emphasis seems “get this over quick and don’t screw up”: it…

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As I’ve alluded to previously, there’s few good corporate interviewees in Ireland – especially on radio and particularly when it comes to the heads of major businesses. Over trained and tightly scripted they present a bland version of themselves that’s characterless and inoffensive. The emphasis seems “get this over quick and don’t screw up”: it makes for eminently forgettable broadcasting.

So that’s why it was a pleasure to recently listen to a corporate Big Beast who was fluent, forthright and sounding utterly at home in the medium.

Step forward Bernard Byrne, CEO of AIB Bank.

Interviewed on Friday, August 7 on the Business section of RTE’s top rated Morning Ireland radio programme and outlining the latest batch of positive results from the Bank, Bernard’s tone exuded the type of confidence of someone who’s completely in control and utterly familiar with both the top line and minutiae of the key facts that need to be communicated. Answers were delivered briskly and professionally and – please take note other CEO’s out there – there was no avoiding or ducking tricky questions.

Contentious issues such as the mortgage variable rates were responded to directly and with aplomb.

An impressive performance by any standards and I look forward to hearing more from Mr Byrne (so long as any handlers don’t stifle his natural competence as a communicator).

This particular interview is a perfect illustration of the advice I give to media and presentation coaching clients. Namely, that my role is definitely not to break them down and re-form them into look-a-like, sound-a-like Stepford characters.

Instead, it’s about taking a collaborative approach, helping them to present the best version of themselves as skilled competent, business leaders and working together to create a narrative they’re comfortable with delivering – whatever the format.

Achieve that and you’re on to a winner.

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Digital Marketing Agencies: Bursting the Bubble http://commssolver.ie/digital-marketing-agencies-bursting-the-bubble/ Tue, 24 Feb 2015 10:11:26 +0000 http://commssolver.ie/?p=334 What’s the deal with Digital Marketing Agencies in Ireland? Twice in the past 3 months I’ve been invited for unsolicited “chats” about the role of Client Service Director. Both agencies had heard about me via their network of contacts, knew my commercial and new business track record from working with the likes of Saatchi in…

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What’s the deal with Digital Marketing Agencies in Ireland?

Twice in the past 3 months I’ve been invited for unsolicited “chats” about the role of Client Service Director.

Both agencies had heard about me via their network of contacts, knew my commercial and new business track record from working with the likes of Saatchi in London, McConnells in Ireland, Dynamics PR etc etc. They wanted to know “What Could I Bring to the Business either as a staffer or a consultant?”

So, in both cases I outlined what I called the “Digital Realities” and where I saw a big commercial growth opportunity. (I can also speak fluent Digital because I’ve done the Certificate in Digital Marketing course at the NCI – i.e. I’ve learnt much more than just the vocabulary).

Anyway, I put forward the view that Digital Agencies in general are far too pleased with themselves. And that there’s a speedbump coming down the tracks in 2015 that’s going to prove a “Reality Bites” moment. Namely, the point when they have to behave like a traditional agency and get commercial.

At the moment business is flying in the door with little or no effort. Client inspection of results is not too rigorous because there’s still a big lack of knowledge about quite what DM can or should achieve. It’s all blue skies. However, recent findings from the fifth annual Alternatives Group Marketing Watch Survey flagged that Digital Marketing will come under greater performance scrutiny over the coming year and with that, a change in attitude.

I said that, based on my experience, agencies needed to future proof their business by having a pro-active new business development programme that’s designed to build revenue from existing and new clients to fuel growth but also to absorb the impact of client losses without incurring profit collapse or a reduction in staff numbers.

Both agencies had previously told me about their work processes and I also felt that they needed to considerably improve their client reporting and client service systems (there’s very little point in creating glorious work if your client is exhausted from the trauma of getting it done).

And the outcome of these chats? One agency felt that my assessment of their business was “obvious” (but not so obvious that they were actually doing what I recommended !).

The second agency felt – and I’m quoting now – “that I was too likely to bring in new business in the short term and with it questions on our capacity to handle that business and possible disruption to the culture of the agency”. ( that was novel – I’ve never heard anyone complain about new income before.)

The experience hasn’t put me off and I’m still interested in chatting with a Digital Agency – but one that’s anchored in the real world and that isn’t averse to growth and expansion.

If that agency exists, then get in touch on 087 2208636 – we might have a lot in common.

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O, What a Lovely (Water) Crisis! http://commssolver.ie/o-what-a-lovely-water-crisis/ Tue, 18 Nov 2014 10:20:38 +0000 http://commssolver.ie/?p=340   Working with Companies to Solve their Communications and Reputation Issues – ie.linkedin.com/in/davidobriencommssolver   So, finally we’re here. The day before the Big Reveal planned for tomorrow evening by the Irish Government that will hopefully be the end of the Big Crisis at Irish Water. I was about to say that it’s a classic example…

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Working with Companies to Solve their Communications and Reputation Issues – ie.linkedin.com/in/davidobriencommssolver

 

So, finally we’re here. The day before the Big Reveal planned for tomorrow evening by the Irish Government that will hopefully be the end of the Big Crisis at Irish Water.

I was about to say that it’s a classic example of Communications Gone Wrong but the story is still unfolding. This past week, the fall out took many forms, from Mary-Lou’s party trick in the Dail chamber to Joan’s incarceration by car. And it really didn’t need to be this way.

For the record, I disagree with those who said the problem was “Communications”. It wasn’t. Incoherent, nonsensical messaging and trying to defend the indefensible were at fault. We’re a sophisticated audience – don’t tell us it’s not a quango when it clearly is, don’t insult us by telling us that salaries are not bonus driven when they are (there’s a subtle difference between nuance and nonsense). Don’t ask us for our PPS numbers without the courtesy of explaining exactly why they’re needed and PLEASE don’t ever tell us again that we’re going on a journey (as some initial Irish Water material stated) – I can think of far more interesting travelling companions than a utility!

Many years ago I worked at Saatchi & Saatchi in London handling the PR launch of The UK National Lottery, then a highly contentious and complex topic of nationwide debate. What I learnt at that time has served me well in the intervening years helping clients to resolve communications and reputation issues.

Clarity, Brevity and Transparency are the crucial elements of good messaging. And Time is needed to hone that messaging while researching that it resonates with the target audience, in terms of being both compelling and credible.

Fast forward to today and looking at Irish Water, it’s clear that none of this happened – until now.

Finally, simplicity and clarity seem to be the order of the day (that’s assuming that the well placed media leaks this weekend of nett payments of less than €200 and €100 are to be believed).

So what else would I advise? Firstly, cover off the other potential banana skins. Put an affordable cap on call out charges for a fixed period and stop the scare mongering stories about extravagant costs. Drastically reduce call waiting times to Irish Water by hiring many more call centre operatives. Beef-up the Irish Water department that handles TD’s and public representatives, again with additional staff. Take the sting out of the privatisation debate by making it the subject of a Referendum (and if there’s a long forgotten Oireachtas instrument that can change the Constitution without the need for a Referendum, even better). For a period of six months, set up a rapid response unit in your Press Office to immediately counter incorrect media facts and general commentary. Also, don’t run away from Social Media – embrace it.

Secondly, develop and implement a twin track communications strategy where a lead spokesperson looks after Corporate while another spokesperson looks after Conservancy and a long term education programme on the value of water as a resource and the role Irish Water plays in that regard.

Lastly, can I offer my prediction for Crisis 2015? It’s another gift from former Minister Phil Hogan that can be summed up in two words – Septic Tanks. Wait until you see that one take off!

Seriously, Enda, call me – my details are listed in my Linked In profile.

 

By David O’Brien

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