“Ladies and Gentlement, we are local agency from Indonesia and we are proud of being independent PR agency,” I said passionately at the podium of 47th Public Relations Organizations International (PROI) Worldwide Global Summit, Sydney Australia (28/3). Applause from 140 PR Expert from 50 participating countries calms me a bit. As the new member of PROI and the only representative from Indonesia, I was required to give a speech about the PR Agency I lead, IMOGEN PR, while sharing my point of view regarding the PR industry landscape in Indonesia, Indonesia’s market and the clients’ project we’re handling and the chance to work alongside with PR Agency from other country.
47th PROI Worldwide Global Summit was held from 28th of March to 1st of April 2017 at Shangri-La The Rock, Sydney, Australia and attended by the head of independent PR Agency from three regions; Asia Pacific (APAC), North and Latin America (AMERICAS) and Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA). Every participant is Managing Director and/or CEO from local and independent PR Agency, chosen to join PROI representing their country. IMOGEN PR, who joined recently during the regional conference PROI in New Zealand, represents Indonesia.
Carrying the theme ‘The New World We Live In’, the meeting encourages PR Consultant from all over the world to survive in the new disruptive era. Throughout the event, PROI partners from around the globe shares their knowledge, case study and the newest development of PR globally. “We’re living in a new world, thus this year we’re going to exchange advice and point of view on how to survive and successfully face it. I believe there would be many knowledge and valuable insight we could share,” said Richard Tsang, Global Chairman of PROI Worldwide opening the Summit.
The most interesting part for me in the summit’s discussion is regarding Global PR Trends where every practitioner face the same challenge; the new disruptive digital era with the digital native millennial and their unique characteristic. Be it in Europe, America, Rusia, Egypt, Japan, Korea, China, Indonesia, the challenge is similar. We exchange story, how to look for the best PR talent and keeping it, how to create a supportive working environment to make the millennial more productive to how we could share experience through employee exchange program.
Digital transformation in PR industry was also an interesting topic, though in some countries this has no correlation to the dimming of mass media industry, however because of the new world era with its new pattern in consuming information. In the more advance countries, digital transformation happens faster because it is supported by the government regulation and a supportive technology infrastructure.
Digital Transormation also makes Issues Management and Crisis PR are required to create new global and more responsive standard, since the negative information travels faster and hoax could surface any minute to make things worse. This topic was discussed in a crisis simulation where participants are divided into groups. Some acted as client, local PR Agency and regional PR Agency. Some other acted as the hoax creator. The case was the credit card burglary in an international chain hotel in America, which soon developed into a global PR Crisis. The simulation was made real, with complaints from customers on social media and worsened by hoax information.
Other than sharing study case shown in various cool videos, the summit also introduce “The PR Trust” which is a non-profit institution founded by some global PR figures who also founded PROI and has the vision to prepare the upcoming leader of communications in developing country. PR Trust provides insight, network and information access for the mission.
Some of the programs are “Student Mentorship Program” which will be launched mid-year 2017. The program would provide mentorship from the world PR figures to the program’s participant on their personal and professional growth. Other than that, to be more passionate, PR Trust also creates ’30 under 30’, where 30 PR professional under the age of 30 would accept awards and chance to be known globally as world’s youngest communication professional.
PROI Worldwide is renowned and biggest PR Agency partnership in the world. Founded in Europe on 1970, PROI now have 75 independent communication agencies at more than 110 cities in more than 50 countries in the world. PROI membership is based on the company, not individual. Every country is being represented by one chosen PR Agency. IMOGEN PR is the only Indonesia’s PR Agency chosen to be the partner in this global network of communication agency. Other than IMOGEN from Indonesia, there are 7 other PR Agency recently joined; ICON PR from Melbourne, Cyclone from Cameroon, Filtered Media from Sydney, Priority PR from Kuala Lumpur, Midas Communication from Bangkok, P4 Group from Brisbane and Mailander Communication from Torino.
Before the summit ends, members from ASEAN (Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand and Philippine) agreed to gather and formulate a multilateral agreement between PR Agencies in ASEAN. The ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) opens a wider opportunity for cooperation across border; push us to make a credential together, standard of service and rate card to unite us and look for business in other countries across the globe. Indonesia’s flag has aflutter in the global PR Consulting map. Now is the time for us to move, globally.
written by Suharjo Nugroho April 13, 2017 translated by Michelle Margaretha