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‘Digital media is now an integral part of communication strategy,’ says Apeejay alumnus

Akshaye Chopra, a Senior Account Manager with Avian Media enumerates top emerging trends within the PR industry

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“To be honest, my career in the PR (public relations) industry has been pretty coincidental. After schooling, I first had intended to do MBA and did walk down that road with an attempt for it. However, I soon realised that management education wasn’t my calling at that moment,” said Akshaye Chopra, an alumnus of Apeejay Institute of Mass Communication (AIMC). Currently, Akshaye is working with Avian WE, a leading integrated communications agency in India. At Avian We, he handles consumer PR under the automotive practice of the firm with marquee brands such as Kia India and Honda Cars India Ltd. Previously, he has also handled Maruti Suzuki India and other big ticket corporate brands such as Deloitte and Mastercard India. In an interview, the PR professional explains what excites him about the automobile industry and top trends in the PR industry.   

What excites you about the automotive industry and automotive PR?

I have always been passionate about cars and I fondly remember those days when my grandfather and I used to play the “car body” game, where we would sit and identify car names based on the car body type. I would just thoroughly enjoy seeing cars in movies, revving that horsepower to full force and  understanding how they are built. It always gave me immense peace and also simultaneously always excited me.

Automotive PR has a lot of different subsets and each one of them is super exciting in its own way. Take this for example, every price band of a car taps a particular set of consumers and here you will have 10 car brands having cars in the same price bracket. How then do these different brands chart out communication strategies for the same set of audience and curate their own comprehensive outreach plans is something that makes me really inquisitive.

Making targeted communication outreach for a customer that has so many options to pick and making it engaging, immersive and different – that balance is what is exciting and currently, pulls me out of bed every day with a passion of sorts.

Enumerate three top trends of PR industry for 2022

Like almost every sector in the world, the PR industry has evolved pretty much post the pandemic. While the industry was witnessing constant change even otherwise, the pandemic definitely nudged the industry to start seeing many things in a newer light. Subsequently, building on this evolution, there are some trends which we can expect to shape up in the coming months:

Data and technology is the new oil: Technology and its use to derive meaning from data will continue to even be more integrated with the life now continues to be hyper connected. Therefore, data will be the new war chest to do data-oriented storytelling and customised selling to consumers.

Purpose is the new heart which beats across every communication strategy: With all the pandemic learnings and unlearning of old ways, purpose has now become the center of everything. People have a subconscious note of what all brands did to their employees, society when the tables were turned. Now consumers aren’t just shoppers but conscious loyalists, who want to be associated with a brand that has a purpose in a truest sense. This will continue for a long term in the coming years.

Social Networking Service (SNS) is the new treasure mine: Digital media is now one of the most important elements of any communication strategy. Be it podcasts or influencer partnerships, the power of social media is, in today’s time, unparalleled. This will continue to accentuate even further in the coming times, with more and more forms of social media being leveraged by companies to ensure a complete and comprehensive brand communication.

Harshita is Assistant Editor at Apeejay newsroom. With experience in both the Media and Public Relations (PR) world, she has worked with Careers360, India Today and Value360 Communications. A learner by nature, she is a foodie, traveller and believes in having a healthy work-life balance.

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