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9 PR Trends You Should Keep An Eye On In 2023

9 PR Trends You Should Keep An Eye On In 2023

Learn 2023 PR trends to have on your radar

In the ever-evolving public relations (PR) landscape, the hot trends of yesterday give way to new innovations that are just around the corner. Every year, a company or agency’s PR efforts must adapt and evolve to maintain relevance; it’s all part of the natural progression of any industry, especially ours. Similarly, like most industries, PR has its own trends which come and go. By identifying and staying on top of (and at times ahead of) such trends, public relations professionals can better understand how to prepare for the future and offer clients the best service possible.

So, what lies ahead in 2023 in the world of PR? THEPRBAR interviewed 9 PR Pros to ask them to weigh in on their top predictions of what PR trends are expected to be at the forefront of the industry in 2023.

Double Down on DEIB Efforts When Storytelling

Fatou Barry | Founder | PR Girl Manifesto

Why do you think that diversity and inclusion is a PR Trend to watch in 2023?

PR Pros will have to double down on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) efforts to tell the stories of how their clients are making an impact. Diversity and inclusion will become an even greater key performance indicator (KPI) for brands/organizations in 2023. PR Pros can expect growing expectations from both consumers and journalists to share their commitment to diversity and social responsibility. 

Media gatekeepers increasingly want to share more stories that are diverse and inclusive of all; PR practitioners will be the ones tasked with sharing those stories on behalf of the brands/organizations they serve. Because of this, messaging will have to be inclusive of those who come from a variety of lived experiences, ie: being differently-abled, coming from different socioeconomic backgrounds, etc. 

Additionally, Millennials and Gen Z now make up more than 60% of tech B2B buyers (Source: TrustRadius). In order for PR professionals to effectively support their clients, they’ll have to ensure that any DEIB statements or commitments made are more than lip service and can be backed up with examples of real results. 

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Learn more about Building Diverse Communities with Fatou on Pitchin’ and Sippin’ Here

Rewriting the Rules

Lisa Smith | Founder | The PR Net

Why do you think that rewriting the rules is a PR trend to watch in 2023?

Through our day-to-day reporting and awards programs, such as The PR Net 100 and Next Gen Awards, we get sharp insights into the macro moves of the industry. 2023 will see communications agencies and executives continue to rewrite the traditional rules of PR. The where, how, why and when are all up for grabs: it’s a refreshing fresh look at the modes that were used pre-pandemic – companies are reviewing all elements of what they do and reacting to what serves both them and their clients or brands best. As always, those who adapt to the times will thrive.

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Learn more about Influential Brand Partnerships with Lisa on the Pitchin’ and Sippin’ Here

Affiliate Marketing for Product-Based Businesses

Jen Berson | Founder | Jeneration Academy

Why do you think that affiliate marketing for product-based businesses is a PR trend to watch in 2023?

Affiliate marketing is THE most important trend to consider in 2023. Every single product-based client needs affiliate marketing, and it’s up to you as their PR pro to make that happen. And you need to do it fast! PR pros need to get their clients’ products on the biggest retail platforms like Amazon, Walmart, Nordstrom, and Target for affiliate marketing, or platforms like ShareASale. You really need to push for your clients to get into affiliate marketing. Not doing so will absolutely jeopardize their future press success — journalists and editors are less and less willing to showcase products that can’t generate affiliate revenue for their publication.

With affiliate marketing, you can see exactly where sales and traffic are coming from — crucial info to help inform your ongoing press strategy. You can use the data to shift your focus to the platforms or programs that are getting the most traffic, to reach consumers where they already are. Plus, as we all know how difficult it can be to measure ROI, affiliate marketing gives you a whole new avenue for showing your value to clients.

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Learn more about Affiliate Marketing with Jen on the Pitchin’ and Sippin’ Here

Media Relationships and Short-Form Video

Carolyn Sutton | Founder | Carolyn Sutton PR and Brand Your Brand, Co.

Why do you think that media relationships and short-form video is a PR trend to watch in 2023?

As we quickly dive into 2023 – two trends will be vital for brands and clients – relationships and short-form video. For 19 years, we have placed incredible importance on building smart, established, ongoing media relationships, which will be heightened in 2023. No longer are media tours and media visits a top priority – the media is stretched thin. So the value of smart, specific relationship building is essential to keep PR professionals and brands top of mind to key media. Quality over quantity of media relationships will help PR professionals sail in 2023. And…we cannot emphasize enough – do not ignore your local media, which will contribute to the success of national hits.  Consider joining a journalist/PR community such as PitchCraft.

Additionally, we cannot emphasize enough the importance of short-form videos for your brands. Invest in a content creation firm – such as Brand Your Brand, Co. – to plan, execute and deliver short-form videos for social media, your website, pitching, and to share with broadcast media. It’s essential to have on-hand video to gain broadcast media coverage.

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Learn about the Annual News Cycle and Lookbook with Carolyn on the Pitchin’ and Sippin’ Here

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and PR

Meghen Peck | PR Account Manager | THEPRBAR Agency

Why do you think that AI is a PR trend to watch in 2023?

Artificial intelligence (AI) will be increasingly used in public relations in 2023. In fact, we’re already seeing it in action. AI can be used to help identify trends in data, predict customer behavior and sentiment, and even create content that resonates with target audiences. It’s a tool that companies can use to streamline their marketing efforts and ensure they’re reaching their largest markets with relevant and timely content. With AI at their disposal, PR professionals will be able to provide faster responses to inquiries from journalists and media outlets, as well as more accurate insights into what audiences want from brands.

Even more so, AI has the potential to help hospitality, lifestyle, and technology-based companies (industries that we service at THEPRBAR Agency) by automating tasks such as content creation, customer service, email automation, and social media engagement. The main reason for this is that AI can help companies find and manage the right content for their audiences, which is crucial when it comes to PR. As a result, this will free up time for PR professionals who can then focus on other aspects of their jobs: building relationships with journalists, pitching stories to reporters and interacting with customers on social media channels—all of which are integral to effective PR strategies.

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Thought Leadership Continues to Trend

Samantha Bryant | Founder | Samantha Bryant Public Relations

Why do you think that thought leadership is a PR trend to watch in 2023?

Thought leadership is important in all public relations plans, and I think we will continue to see that trend moving upward this year. Audiences crave authenticity. The public wants content in which they can put a face on a brand. I think social media has been a big game changer in terms of thought leadership as well. Audiences want to see content they can relate to and they want to learn the ups, downs, ins, and outs of today’s business leaders. I believe we’ll continue to see thought leadership grow, as we’ve all been craving connections following the pandemic. Audiences want to connect with today’s leaders and thought leadership paves the way for that accessibility. We all have our own views and uniqueness that we bring to the table. I think it’s incredibly valuable to offer those views on trends and industry topics and provide solutions based on your knowledge.

Most importantly, to be a thought leader you need to define and align your goals with your overall 2023 marketing plans. Once all is aligned, you can conquer the market as a thought leader. This is absolutely a sustainable strategy in the communications and public relations world in 2023 and beyond. 

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Learn about Crafting Timely PR Strategies with Samantha on the Pitchin’ and Sippin’ Here

Bringing Back PR Teams

Tiffany Joy Murchison | Multicultural Media Maven & CEO | TJM & Co. Media Boutique

Why do you think bringing back public relations teams is a PR trend to watch in 2023?

In 2023 and beyond, the [perceived] value of PR – which began to diminish with the social media boom, will increase. Larger corporations will incorporate external PR agencies as a large part of their marketing ecosystem. In other words, business for PR agencies and experienced freelancers will increase. 

Why? Audiences, especially the younger millennials and Gen-A, are hyper-sensitive to how businesses, celebrities, and influencers are responding to the current social and political climate. An article in The Christian Post reported, “A survey from left-leaning British media outlet Channel 4 has revealed that Generation Z is less open-minded and more intolerant than older generations. Defined as people aged 13-24, Gen Z were more likely to believe that people should be “canceled” for their views and held less acceptance of different opinions than older generations.” 

The culture, mission, and vision of brands that consumers invest their money and time in matters. Thus, brands will have no choice but to work with those of us whose business it is to monitor and study the behavior and psychographics of the various generations. And the savviest C-Suites understand that the input of a seasoned public relations professional is essential BEFORE the communication crisis; in actuality, to prevent the crisis altogether. By enlisting the services of an outside PR agency, businesses minimize the risk of groupthink, where everyone is drinking the same kool-aid and avoiding the hard questions and conversations.

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Learn about Navigating Crisis and Reputation Management with Tiffany on the Pitchin’ and Sippin’ Here

Substack as A Go-To PR Resource

Lexie Smith | Founder & CEO | THEPRBAR Agency

Why do you think Substack is a PR trend to watch in 2023?

HARO (Help a Reporter Out) is one of the most widely known resources and list serves in the world of Public Relations. For more than a decade teams of publicists everywhere have opened their inbox daily to scan for relevant client opportunities and queries in hopes of scoring quick-win client coverage. Apart from scanning Facebook groups, editorial calendars, Twitter feeds, and select Facebook groups, “it’s been a minute” since a new notable resource has become available to both journalists and PR pros alike. Enter Substack.

An online platform that provides publishing, payment, analytics, and design infrastructure to support subscription newsletters”, Substack is quickly gaining popularity among the freelance journalism community in particular. With the ability to subscribe to different “Substack Feeds” both for free and at a paid premium, many journalists are including callouts for what they’re working on directly in their feeds. Some of my favorite journalists are also including guidelines for exactly how they prefer to be pitched. Can I get a big THANK YOU for the industry at large? Listen to my recent podcast Interview with Jill Schildhouse to learn more about this up-and-coming platform. (P.S. Jill has a fantastic Substack herself, make sure to subscribe – in addition to Pitchin’ and Sippin’ guest Aly Walansky.)  

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More Contributed Article Requests

Brandi Sims, MBA | Founder & CEO | Brandinc PR

Why do you think that contributed article requests are a trend to watch in 2023?

The request for more contributed articles is certainly going to be a trend for this year. It’s not new that media staff has continued to shrink in the last several years, which has caused many to operate on short timelines, and limited journalists to work on them. Providing contributed articles add value for them because it is prepared, ensures there is expert insight and it’s timely. This is what’s going to set many apart from others that are continuing to rely on old methods of media coverage.

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Learn about Product Placement and Pitching with Brandi on the Pitchin’ and Sippin’ Here

What trends do you see happening in PR this year?

The PR industry is always evolving, and it’s important to stay up-to-date on the latest trends. A big part of staying up-to-date is reading industry publications and blogs, attending conferences, and interacting with other professionals on social media. 

Call to Action – Learn how you can make your mark in 2023 by tuning in to THEPRBAR’s Pitchin’ and Sippin’ Podcast.


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