September 15, 2014 9.00 am This story is over 87 months old

What the “New Royals” can teach us about PR

Right royal PR: Lava’s Penny Reeve explains how the youngest royals have successfully marketed the royal family recently, and how businesses can apply the same ideas.

Today marks the 30th Birthday of Prince Harry. Of course, I don’t really need to tell you this, as it’s all over the media, thanks to a brilliant concert which saw him jointly celebrating his birthday alongside the culmination of The Invictus Games.

This isn’t the first time the Royals have been in the press this year. In the last couple of months we’ve seen a successful Royal Tour to Australia, George’s first birthday celebrations and the announcement of Kate and Will’s new baby.

The “New Royals”, by which I mean Harry, William, Kate and various young relatives are becoming more PR savvy than the older Royals ever have been. Not only good for them, a positive image of the Royals means a positive image for the UK.

Take Charles for example, who was never really a darling of the media. However, following in their mother’s footsteps William and Harry (or their PR team, at least) have decided that being engaging and fun has the potential to up the international perception of the Royal Family no end.

Okay, they’ve made some mistakes, Harry’s Halloween outfit being one of them, but they’re also very good at admitting when they’ve made a mistake. Harry was quick off the mark to apologise about his costume and these small blips, with a strong apology soon after, just add to the media frenzy.

Here are some ways in which the New Royals are livening up the proscribed image of the Royal Family, which can be easily adopted and adapted by companies to revive PR buzz:

Media friendly
Rather than shying away from the cameras, the New Royals are friendlier to the press than their forbears. Media savvy and engaging, the family – especially Kate Middleton and her stylish wardrobe – have the journalists the world over salivating.

Make sure that you don’t shy from the media. If you have something positive to say, or are doing something positive, for charity as an example, then shout about it!

Not following traditional protocol
The days of the ‘stiff upper lip’ Royal may have gone out with Diana, but the New Royals have taken the move from the traditional image even further. Whether it’s engaging with their subjects with selfies (even the Queen got in on this one, bless her), or playing with koalas, the Royals aren’t afraid to show that they like a bit of fun, just like the rest of us. Point in case – the photos of Prince Phillip’s biliousness on the Royal Balcony.

Look at successful large-scale businesses like Google and Innocent drinks, who do something just that little bit different. Whether it’s a ball pool in the office, grass on the floor or duvet days, having fun at work makes for a happy workforce and a great PR story.

The Mini-Prince
Not only did Kate show off her baby bump to the world, former civilian Kate actually gave birth at home. Following this we saw George playing with other children (of a non-Royal background) and various photos of the young couple looking comfortable and at ease with their little one. Gone are the old formal photos of the Royals, here comes happy, relaxed family portrait, showing a young couple enjoying being parents in the 21st century.

Getting creative and showing your company as ‘approachable’ will have customers queuing at the doors. Professional photography is a great way to go about this. If you’re having company shots taken, try to come up with something a little bit different to the stuffy ‘head and shoulders’ shot of yore.

The Invictus Games
The games were quite a feat. After being inspired by the American Warrior Games in 2013, Harry decided to set up his own games to support the Forces and within less than a year it was up and running, with top level sponsorship. Not only does the games show that the Royal’s are giving back to those who give their lives for the U.K, it’s also points out that Harry et al care about their subjects and want to support them.

Showing your commitment to a charity is not only a great way to engage with your target audience, but a great way to increase workplace morale, too.

By being more media friendly the New Royals have really revived something that was perceived as old and out of touch. After the controversy surrounding Princess Diana’s demise it seemed that the death knell had been tolled for the Royals, however with some positive PR and media savvy work, the Royals are in a stronger position than at any time in recent memory.

Long live the Royals!

Want to chat about how you can revive your image add that ‘Royal Factor’ to your business? Then drop me a tweet @PennedPR

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After travelling the world, Penny settled back into the UK and entered the world of public relations. After gaining three years experience of the profession in the renewables industry, Penny joined Lava as an Account Manager. In her spare time, Penny is the community editor for Nottingham-based magazine LeftLion and plays roller derby for the Nottingham Roller Girls.