The time is right to invest in PR (says Ryanair boss)

0_0_620_http---offlinehbpl.hbpl.co.uk-news-OKM-Ryanair-Twitter-3-20130923044243796
Britain’s economic recovery is no longer a pipe dream. Upwards revisions abound, this change in circumstance offers a perfect opportunity to step up your marketing and public relations game. Just ask Michael O’Leary.
As the man in charge of Ryanair, the most popular airline outside the U.S. by passenger numbers, and if ihateryanair.org is much to go by potentially the world’s most despised, he’s well known for holding customers in contempt. Like it or lump it, either way you’ll get there for a fraction of the cost other carriers can offer, and usually on time. But this stance could be changing.
So whilst the chap at the top once labelled a mother “an idiot??? for not printing her family’s boarding cards off and being fined £236, on Sunday he took to Twitter and addressed the world, including those with grievances. Despite the fact Ryanair has cornered the continental budget travel market, with prices often well-below the competition, apparently it must consider public image, brand perception and reputation just like the rest of us.
According to The Institute of Practitioners in Advertising’s most recent Bellweather Report, one of the most influential surveys in UK marketing, many companies are seizing the post-recession opportunity to do the same, with an upturn in promotional spend. Over 12% of firms increased their marketing budgets for the third quarter- almost double the number in the first half of this year, with the entire sector set to grow by 3.6% in 2014. Which isn’t bad, considering we still have doom and gloom headlines in the paper recycling.
At Smoking Gun we’re taking this to heart. Following the launch of our brand new ingenious PR website in September the collective sights are now set on a recruitment drive, with no less than three new members of staff set to join, following three new hires earlier this year. Thinking beyond increasing headcount we’re also about to roll out our biggest investment in team training to date. It’s a vital move to retain our reputation as one of the best agencies in the business, because when public relations is in high demand competition is always fierce. In short then, here’s to maintaining a very visible presence at the top.