Picture This

 Isobel Postins, senior account director, Clarion Communications

We all know this PR dream: check the papers first thing to find blanket coverage for a picture-led story dreamt up in a brainstorm months ago.  Everyone’s happy, especially the client.

Your unique picture story has generated pages of coverage complete with branding in target media, equating to a vast AVE and reach that will deliver a great ROI.

If only it was that easy every time. Seemingly it’s simple enough to achieve great picture-lead results given the hours of planning that goes into delivery. Yet, even for the most experienced, media-savvy and creative team there are factors beyond control that influence outcome, such as breaking news, other brand picture stories or a journalist just not liking your story.

If great results cannot be guaranteed for each creative proposed, why do PR agencies frequently suggest this route to clients?  We all want to achieve big-bang, impressive hits - and that’s exactly what successful picture stories generate for a relatively low marketing cost.

Is it possible to create the holy-grail: a fool-proof formula for picture stories?  Well, it would mean being able to plan in luck, because once your story is in the hands of journalists, you never really know what you’re going to get.

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