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Public Relations Trends for 2018

It’s that time of year again where Public Relations (PR) persons will gather to strategize for the 2018 fiscal year. To make this year’s planning different, I will be sharing some strategic ideas, communication trends and international best practices.

If you plan on soaring in 2018, here are some ideas to pay attention to.



In 2017, many companies spent a chunk of their communication budget on broadcast media alone. We can’t keep paying over GHS 6000 for TV news coverage when Facebook Live is free, effective and interactive. We can’t pay for a channel or segment our target audience don’t watch, listen to or read. Feel free to disagree though.

Ask yourself this: “are the demographic factors of my target audience in sync with my choice of media platform?” At the end of the day, we as PR practitioners must review what works in our industry and what doesn’t.

The power of video is undeniable. More than 8 billion average daily views and 100 million hours of video are watched every day on Facebook. As PR and business practitioners living in Ghana, I’m not sure we have milked the dawn of video storytelling enough.

I don’t know if you have noticed also that attention span is shortening. People hardly read newspapers from cover to cover. People hardly listen to news from the beginning to end, etc.

Dear PR people, if you are not harnessing the video era, start now. Go to UdemySkillshare and the Khan Academy to take free online courses.

         Related: Why I Quit Career Networking and Why You Should Too


Most people at agencies or with client start off their PR career doing media monitoring and clippings. This necessary evil has become a trend the world over. Because of time and staff constraints, the average PR practitioner monitors for monitoring sake. No trends, patterns, opportunities and the deeper analysis are suggested for planning. I dare say the absence of project/campaign measurement has fuelled the perception that PR doesn’t bring much to the table.

In 2018, let the relevant measurement tools and analytics do the talking in our reports. Tools like AMEC Integrated Framework and Google Analytics can help with PR campaign measurement. You can take free webinars on measurement at Ragan’s Measurement for Communicators Conference.

             Related: How My First Note To Self Prepared Me For 2018

Let’s look at more PR measurement tools below:

TrendKiteTrendkite’s PR analysis helps to know PR’s true impact. It does this by measuring impact, enhancing quality coverage, and strategically shaping your approach to PR.

GorkanaMedia database, monitoring and social media analysis

MeltwaterMeltwater offers the largest global media database, ensuring you’ve found all of your media mentions. With intuitive dashboards and one-click reports, it’s easy to demonstrate campaign performance and ROI.

Newsmeter: Newsmeter is an online global news tracker service with an award-winning indexing technology. Our platform traces all the global news resources around the world continuously. Our platform has the capability to gather all published news together and generates detailed reports on topics that interest you by analyzing these news articles.

Talkwalker: Protect, measure and optimize the impact of your brand communication with our leading social listening and analytics suite

Hootsuite: Manage all your social media in one place. From finding prospects to serving customers,
Hootsuite helps you do more with your social media.

TweetReach: Monitor all the topics and profiles important to you on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. Improve your social media strategy and execution across social media with Union Metrics.

               Related: Five Most Abused News Headlines in Ghana


Departments like Marketing, Finance, Operations, etc. have always questioned how PR budget is used. Some practitioners are not able to justify in detail how a campaign’s performance is linked to ROI. In an era of Artificial Intelligence (AI), PR divisions must invest in platforms that provide value and analysis on projects.

CisionThe award-winning Cision software brings together the elements you need to engage the right influencers, get coverage, achieve measurable results and manage your campaigns. Cision circulates media stories globally and with so much convenience. Hence there’s no need to bother media cabal here in Ghana to publish your stories for you; the system does the distribution for you.

Trello: Trello lets you work more collaboratively and get more done. Trello’s boards, lists, and cards enable you to organize and prioritize your projects in a fun, flexible and rewarding way.

MentionMention monitors millions of sources in 42 languages, helping you stay on top of all brand mentions. It monitors social networks, news sites, forums, blogs or any web page. The app lets you keep track of your team’s actions, shares alerts and assigns tasks. Generating reports and exporting mentions can help you get a snapshot of your mentions by source or language over a selected period of time.


If you are looking to attend PR conferences, submit a proposal to speak, or get an award, scroll down. The list covers most prestigious PR events, juicy training programs and the likes.

PRWeek AwardsPRWeek Awards celebrates the best of the best corporate, agency, nonprofit, etc. and the work they produced during the entry period. Within its 19 years of existence, only 39 trophies are awarded each year.        Date: March 15, 2018     Location: New York City (Finalists will be announced for 2018 on December 6, 2017).

African Public Relations Association (APRA)The 30th edition of the annual APRA conference is themed “Re-PResenting Africa”. The conference will consist of plenary sessions, workshops and trending case studies. It will continue the quest to change Africa’s narrative by further defining strategies for driving such change. Emphasis will be on storytelling as a tool of public relations.   Date: May 9-11, 2018       Location: Gaborone, Republic of Botswana

International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) World ConferenceThe IABC World Conference is a long-standing, global professional development event that typically draws 1,000 to 1,200 attendees from around the world.                              Dates: June 3-6, 2018      Location: Montreal, Quebec

Arthur Page Society Annual Conference

Dates: September 23-25, 2018
Location: Washington, D.C.

PR Society of America (PRSA) International Conference

Dates: October 7-9, 2018
Location: Austin, Texas

Related: Social Media: Send to 20 People Dey Bore



  • Further your education
  • Join a local or international PR body and partake seriously
  • Earn your space in your company, PR industry and in the corporate world
  • Carve a social media voice
  • Invest in relevant apps and trainings worldwide
  • Access quality and high-resolution images on PixabayFlickrFreepik and other free platforms.


What are you looking forward to learning more about in 2018? I’d love to hear about what new skills, trainings, services that weren’t captured in this piece.

#PublicRelations #Communications #TeamPR #PRrevolution #ReinventingYourself #BetterVersionOfYou

Story By Paa Kwesi Forson

Paa Kwesi is a PR practitioner with one of Ghana’s finest PR agencies, Global Media Alliance Connect with him on LinkedIn @paakwesiforson.


Ghana’s leading PR agency, Global Media Alliance (GMA) has hosted 40 students from the Public Relations Management Students' Association (PReMSA) of the University of Professional Studies (UPSA) to give them in-depth understanding and practical view of Strategic Public Relations in the workplace.

As part of the educational tour, the students were met by Chief Executive Officer of GMA, Mr. Ernest Boateng, who urged them to use digital platforms and every opportunity available to harness their skills while in school.


He said GMA welcomes such initiatives as part of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) efforts to introduce PR students to the agency side of PR practice.

Interacting with the students, Director of GMA, Ms. Emma Wenani said GMA is the agency of choice to learn from, owing to its world-class clientele, international awards, and wealth of experience across various industries.

“GMA has won the coveted IPR consultancy of the year award three times: first in 2013, 2015 and 2016 concurrently. Aside that, GMA has won Africa Best Employer Brand 2017 awarded by World HRD Congress, Best PR Agency in Corporate Communications 2016 awarded by the International Public Relations Association, among others.”

GMA-UPSA-VisitIn the course of the presentations, the students expressed a general appreciation for GMA’s current PR strategies used to execute key PR account campaigns. “We never knew this amount of work went into the campaigns that we see and read about”, one student said.

On behalf of the students, Kenneth Aidam, President of PReMSA thanked the management and staff of GMA for their warm reception and making their departmental week celebrations a success.

“We look forward to more partnerships with GMA where students can freely learn the best PR practices from the team at GMA. We are most grateful once again for the opportunity.”

Global Media Alliance is a focused Integrated Media & Entertainment Company with 20 years of experience and expertise in Broadcasting, Public Relations and Media Consultancy, Events Management, Creative Services, Digital and Brand Marketing. GMA is one of the leading PR Consultancies in the country with experience in the diverse segments of the public relations industry. GMA-UPSA-Visit

GMA is affiliated to Weber Shandwick and Fleishman Hillard, two of the top 5 PR firms in the world.



Global Media Alliance International Women's Day Celebration

Global Media Alliance (GMA), a leading communication agency in Ghana, yesterday joined many organizations in the world to celebrate International Women’s Day. At a seminar organized by GMA for their female employees, the CEO of Afribiz Group Limited, Mrs. Janet Sunkwa-Mills, cautioned participants to be mindful of their brand and how they portray themselves as their personal brand plays a key role in their daily activities.

International Women's Day is annually marked on March 8 to recognize the achievements of women in society in social, economic, cultural and political areas. In recent times, many women as much as they keep their roles as the homemaker, have also taken up career roles in the corporate and entrepreneurial world.

The global theme for this year’s celebration is ‘Press for Progress’.

Speaking on the subject “Building my Career through Effective Communication and Packaging”, Mrs. Sunkwa-Mills said “It is important for us as ladies to pay some attention to how we look because our appearance, which is entirely our brand, says a lot about us before we communicate with words. It doesn’t mean you should look all expensive, but rather presentable wherever you find yourself”.

Speaking on the global theme for this year’s celebration, Mrs. Sunkwa-Mills further encouraged women to utilize their talents and skills in building their personal brands.

According to her “building your brand is not all about how you look but also how to communicate, connect and utilize your talent and skills”. She added, “It is important to set personal values and principles buttressed with your talents and skills, and inconsistency so as not to confuse people’s perception about you”.

Mrs. Mills who is also the Founder and Manager of Jane’M Salon and Spa further urged women present to be confident in who they are and what they do.

A Director at GMA, Ms. Emma Wenani, stated that “the theme for this year’s celebration of International Women’s Day is inspiring enough for us as women to pursue our ambitions to the very end. Women are unique in their contributions and in their roles in society”.

She also encouraged her female colleagues to demonstrate their skills with determination to be able to achieve their dreams while remaining particularly true to their personal brands.

Many organizations across the globe organize and execute various activities including workshops, donations, seminars and fora among others to appreciate the work of women and also show their support to them.