Stripe Communications Blog

Long time no see London: Stripe is back in Shoreditch

Long time no see London: Stripe is back in Shoreditch

After 6 months, 9 million zoom calls, a dear friend and colleague going on maternity leave with no proper send off, a much loved team member emigrating with no proper send off, work lows and work highs, a distinctly average Zoom summer party, new team members joining remotely and endless days of rummaging in a kitchen cupboard for that mid-morning break, we finally returned to the office on Monday.

We all had the same feelings you’re having reading this (if you’re still working remotely); will I be safe? Will the commute be terrible? Will the masks be annoying? Will people be responsible about social distancing and hygiene? Isn’t it easier working remotely? There are probably more to add to that list. Like most, we went back into the office in two bubbles on rotation, designed to ensure continuity of our business in the event of any lockdowns and changes to our ways of working in the future.

Before we went back and we carefully and meticulously completed our ‘safe return to work’ plan, it felt like we were writing the ‘suck the fun out of work’ plan. Those tactile moments of a shared birthday cake, the work drinks, all the stuff that helps make going to the office is fun for all swiped away with a sanitised hand.

So, in short, we didn’t know what to expect really. I personally knew I was losing love for work, working in a remote environment. It was becoming a grind and something to endure versus something to enjoy. I came to the realisation I am only as effective in my role as I want to be when I am inspired by other people to challenge my thinking and make me challenge myself and that that is not as effective when done remotely.

That first day back in the office was the most I have enjoyed a day’s work in 6 months. Most of us in PR went into it because we are people people. We enjoy company and we enjoy a work culture that is fun, collaborative and inspiring. Otherwise you could happily clock in your work hours driving an HGV up and down the M1.

I have struggled to describe articulately just how much good it did for us all. Because really, it’s everything that being together means. The chat about my lockdown DIY haircut, the dubious music choices on the office stereo, the nefarious celebrities laid bare on the Mail Online sidebar of shame that warrant our attention, the listening and helping, the ideas building and ruminating, the support and the friendly ear, the encouragement, the many many laughs, the caring, the people.

Lockdown rushed the conversation about remote working. It has thrown us forward to the extreme of remote working and made us adapt with no preparation in what most likely would have taken 5-10 years. Whilst we’re all aware we may not go back to a full 9-5 five days a week any time soon, what I have come to realise is that balance is so critical. My opinion is that creative businesses, operating in creative office/work environments with creative people in them will deliver greater end product than when those same people are forced only to converse via video conference.

This is not a ‘pro return to work rant’ I have loved being closer to my family, seeing them more, being home for every bedtime and just knowing more about their lives, that working from home has granted, but I also know that I am happy when I feel like I am doing a good job at work and I do a better job as part of a connected team working together in person.

Stripe is a people business where people matter. What going back to the office this week has made me realise is that the people in our business, that I am lucky to call friends and colleagues are what matter most to me and there is no virtual facetime substitute for the real thing.

Social Media News: August

Social Media News: August

A lot has been happening in the world of social media in August and in this week’s blog post, we’re sharing some of our highlights… 

 

From our favourite integrated campaigns to some exciting new features and updates to the most popular platforms, including Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram, we’ll be unpacking what made the biggest impact in the digital space and what’s captured our attention at Stripe!  

Beluga whaleCredit: @PA

A campaign that made us smile…

This month marked a major milestone in our historic global PR & Social Media campaign for the SEA LIFE Trust Beluga Whale Sanctuary project. After years of planning, logistical hurdles, weather postponements and a global pandemic to overcome, this was the day that two former captive whales, Little Grey and Little White, would finally be reunited with the sea after spending the majority of their lives in captivity. The campaign caused a massive splash, making global news around the world, including two UK national news front pages, a BBC Breakfast, and ITN News at Ten feature. This was supported by a social content strategy focused on amplifying major media milestones in the journey of Little Grey and Little White, resulting in two Twitter Moments.

 

Platform updatesTop #3 Platform Updates

Out with the old! Facebook has changed to its new-look platform, making it easier for users to navigate. 

Twitter now lets users limit replies to their tweets. This is not the only update with the platform having launched their new API for third-party suppliers. 

Copycat alert! Instagram has now launched Reels it’s very own ‘TikTok-esque’ feature.

Reese Witherspoon

Credit: @ReeseWitherspoon

 

Favourite Viral Meme

The months of 2020… as told by celeb photos. Celebs have been describing how we’ve all been feeling during each month of 2020, using pictures of themselves. This trend has been jumped on by Reese Witherspoon and Mindy Kaling, among others. 

 

Don’t forget to follow @StripeCom on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn to keep up to date with what’s happening in the world of Stripe!

HOME TO THE OCEAN – AN EPIC STORY GIVEN A GLOBAL PLATFORM

HOME TO THE OCEAN – AN EPIC STORY GIVEN A GLOBAL PLATFORM

Senior Account Director, Andrew Boocock, reflects on the epic nature of delivering a historic global PR & Social Media campaign to tell the story of the world’s first open water sanctuary for beluga whales.

Waking up at 4.45am in the Hotel Vestmannaeyjar on Friday 7th August, the calm Icelandic dawn brought a reassuring sense of inevitability.

After years of planning, logistical hurdles, weather postponements and a global pandemic to overcome, this was the day that two former captive whales, Little Grey and Little White, would finally be reunited with the sea after spending the majority of their lives in captivity.

As I reluctantly swallowed my daily shot of cod liver oil, I had to pinch myself. Not in response to this frankly disgusting breakfast I had routinely adopted, but at the sheer scale of the journey myself and the team had been on with the SEA LIFE Trust Beluga Whale Sanctuary project.

We were about to help tell the story of a historic moment in marine and animal welfare which had never been done before. Gulp!

 

From Shanghai to Iceland: a global strategy to build love, excitement and sentiment

Almost three years earlier, I had relocated my family from Edinburgh to London to start a new life in the capital. The SEA LIFE Trust Beluga Whale Sanctuary project represented a massive opportunity to fulfil my ambitions for travelling the world and being part of an agency delivering campaigns with purpose. As a global communications brief, it didn’t get more epic.

This was a multi-faceted story to tell, not least in its scale and complexity. No-one had ever created a campaign strategy for a beluga whale sanctuary before.

We were starting from scratch, but at its core the team set out with a clear vision and objectives:

  • Build awareness, love and excitement for the Beluga Whale Sanctuary to take a global audience on a journey of discovery
  • Deliver engaging and educative content to grow a community of advocates and show the different stages of Little Grey and Little White’s journey to the world’s first open water sanctuary
  • Protect and manage the reputation of the associated brands and the Beluga Whale Sanctuary on a global scale during each stage of the project.

Using a multi-channel approach, our content strategy focused on amplifying major media milestones in the journey of Little Grey and Little White, whilst creating a drum beat of news and regular updates on the whale’s progress to help grow a community of fans on social using video and beautiful imagery.

From the initial project announcement in June 2018 to Little Grey and Little White’s 6,000 miles journey by land, air and sea from an aquarium in Shanghai to a remote Icelandic island called Heimaey last year, we have focused on maximising visibility and engagement at every phase of the campaign.

But amongst all the media coverage, Twitter moments and boots-on-the-ground assignments, there is one principle which has been integral to the campaign’s success: building relationships.

 

Home to the ocean

I learnt early on in my career that starting conversations, building connections and establishing relationships matters. People work with people, and over the past three years the relationships the team has cultivated and trust this has forged with the client, their stakeholders and international media contacts on an individual level is what has helped to make each moment fly.

The relationship forged with a media partner such as PA Media, for example, has been critical to the lifeblood of the story. Capturing video content and stills assets at different stages has not only helped to manage the flow of comms but also to inspire people’s love for the whales and the project.

Thanks to the beluga care experts, vets, Icelandic volunteers and none other than TV presenter and comedian, John Bishop, who is narrating an ITV documentary series on the project due to be aired this autumn, I’m pleased to say Little Grey and Little White are doing well after moving from their landside care facility to the sea sanctuary care pools.

John Bishop with Andrew Boocock, Senior Account Director, Stripe Communication, at the SEA LIFE Trust Beluga Whale SanctuaryBefore a big story breaks, there are always anxious moments the night before. How will the media react? Will people engage as you had hoped?

When the embargo lifted on Monday 10 August, I believed we had done all we can as a team to give the story its best chance.

Two UK national news front pages, a BBC Breakfast and ITN News at Ten feature later, the press office email has not stopped. We’ve set up interviews and responded to media as far away as Los Angeles in the West, and Seoul in the East.

But it’s the small things that matter which brings me back to my point about relationships.

At the end of a long and busy week I received a WhatsApp from one of the key visionaries behind the project.

‘Have a fab weekend and thanks again for all your support with this project. The biggest piece of this is about inspiring the public by getting the message out…’

Time for another one of those pinch-myself moments.

 

So long superficial social stars – it’s time for the real influencers to step up

So long superficial social stars – it’s time for the real influencers to step up

The pandemic has made us, as consumers, reassess and reflect on exactly who we’re following online, and why. As the UK public put a spotlight on our everyday heroes – the nurses, bin men and shelf stackers fighting the good fight right there on the frontline – slowly we began to realise that influencer culture had got a little out of control.

From sponsored brand deals, collaborations and an all-expenses paid lifestyle – or at least, the illusion of one – influencers appeared to have been given an easy ride over the past couple of years.

Then coronavirus happened.

Sponsored posts on Instagram fell from representing 35% of influencer content in mid-February to 4% in mid-April according to a report by Launchmetrics. Covid-19 forced content creators to strip back all the luxuries and go back to doing exactly that – creating their own content. With no glamorous events, launches and comped travel to luxe destinations, influencers have retreated to their bedrooms, mirroring exactly what their viewers have been doing for the past four months.

Back to the bedroom

For those of us who remember YouTube’s ‘What’s in my Bag’ era when Zoella filmed her videos in a box room at her parent’s house and Tanya Burr still spent her weekends working on a makeup counter, there’s something satisfying in knowing that throughout lockdown, our favourite influencers were binging Normal People right alongside us.

Pretty much overnight, influencers had to relinquish control of their carefully curated content, pare back their aesthetically pleasing lives and go back to the drawing board to work out exactly what their fans enjoy (and balancing that with much needed hits and engagement) at a time when social media provided a much-needed solace for so many.

In some cases, it’s been refreshing. As we all dusted off our kindles, Beth Sandland launched her virtual book club and brought readers from around the world together. When restaurants and bars were forced to close, Ailsa from Edin Eats pivoted her content from recommending the best places to eat in the city to ‘Edin Cooks’, a series where she learned to cook from scratch in her kitchen.

Josie LDN has captivated Insta audiences over lockdown with her home renovation. Yes, it might be a glorious, million-pound Cotswolds bolthole rather than a one-bedroom studio with a shower above the toilet, but who hasn’t enjoyed a bit of lockdown DIY?

However, it’s clear that others have struggled with developing their style when the safety net is wheeked away (no names mentioned – in this blog post anyway…).

The behaviour backlash

Predictably, living your life online comes with a level of accountability and some influencers have been caught out. Creators such as Arielle Charnas were called out for flouting social distancing rules and travelling long distances – with their followers describing their behaviour as irresponsible, insensitive or just plain old out of touch. Suddenly, fans took off their rose-tinted glasses and instead started to view their favourite influencers with piercing clarity.

So, is this the end of the road for influencers? Despite the backlash, influencer marketing is still one of the most powerful and measurable forms of marketing. During times of uncertainty, people rely on those individuals with credibility to educate, entertain and inspire. That’s not going to change. Influencers just need to ensure that they’re being genuine with the content they’re putting out there and continue to be as authentic as possible.

The rise of authenticity and purpose

Authenticity is something PR professionals have been banging on about for years. But, some of the time, it’s been lip service. How many times has a client said they want to work with a Zoe Sugg, because they can’t see further than the follower count over engagement levels? They’re happy to ‘pay and display’ – pay a one off sum for an Insta Story, a tweet, a single post with #ad. But what’s the benefit for the brand, and ultimately, the end consumer?

It’s our prediction that there is going to be a rise of purpose-led content, and content creators that facilitate conversations and inform valuable two-way discussions with their audiences will come to the fore. Pushing out just one solitary, vacuous grid post isn’t going to cut it with audiences in a post-Covid world and PRs, brands and influencers need to recognise this.

The next few months are going to be an interesting time as opinion shifts. Beauty blogs? Meh. We’d rather see some more dancing bin men.

An ode to the office

An ode to the office

There’s a bit of a tradition at Stripe which started when there was four of us crowded round a single deskphone back in 2007 – when it’s a colleague’s birthday we get cake and candles and we sing happy birthday. That’s it. But oh my god, do I miss those moments. Ten perfect minutes of celebration, joy and community all wrapped in glorious cake-y goodness.

It might be an unpopular opinion, but I miss the office. In all likelihood this is compounded by the fact that I have three marauding kids at home. Even still, I miss the office. I miss coffee and chat with my work wife, I miss the shared moments when you crack a brief, I miss the energy and buzz of big days and busy weeks, I miss spontaneous conversations and random comments that turn into really productive moments. I miss all the teamwork and togetherness that you just don’t seem to get on a Zoom call.

When Twitter announced last month that it would be changing its WFH policy to, well, forever, it set a forward-thinking precedent that could shape the future of how we work. There’s no doubt the benefits of working from home have been huge and have reinforced the value of mental health and work life balance. Letting go of some of the more stressful parts of work life – for me, the commute, the school run and the pressure to ‘be somewhere’ – and then also the realisation that, in fact, productivity doesn’t drop while working remotely.

So yes, absolutely the work is getting done but, in my opinion, it’s just not as much fun. It might sound naff but in a creative and agile industry like PR we don’t just go to work to work, we also go to play and be social. Productivity is important but it isn’t everything. Certainly, for some businesses and their workforces, fully WFH will work like a charm and it’s amazing that this moment has propelled in such positive change. I suppose that when we consider what the future holds for office-based cultures, I’m just not convinced it’s exclusively one thing or another and that maybe the reality is we’ll need a little bit of both.

Perhaps with flexibility, trust and compassion, there’s a chance we can have our cake and eat it.

VIRTUAL STRIPE ACADEMY LAUNCHES

VIRTUAL STRIPE ACADEMY LAUNCHES

Are you a student or graduate thinking about a career in communications? Do you have smart thinking, bright ideas and a passion for communicating?

We know this year will be tough for people starting out in the communications industry. To help talented people kick-start their careers, we’re launching the Virtual Stripe Academy to provide free online training on how things work at an award-winning communications agency.

The Virtual Stripe Academy will provide 12 online training sessions over four weeks. You’ll meet Stripe’s senior team and learn from their experience and expertise – providing industry insight and the skills you’ll need to get started. You can check out the full schedule here. It will run on Zoom from 10 August to 4 September 2020.

The programme is open to anyone studying at college or university as well as those who have graduated in the last two years. You don’t need to study any specific course, but you should have an interest in pursuing a career in the communications industry in the future.

Everyone who completes this training course will be offered the chance to join the new Stripe Mentor programme. The top 10 applicants will be mentored for three months by a senior member of the Stripe team – getting one-to-one career advice and help into the industry.

Registration for Virtual Stipe Academy has now closed. 

Bringing bingo back with Mecca

Bringing bingo back with Mecca

As lockdown kicked in back in March and we at Stripe all moved to remote working, our client Mecca Bingo’s clubs closed across the country. Following this, we didn’t expect to have such a ‘Mecca’ busy few months.

Mecca Bingo is a brand at the heart of local communities across the country and in response to the crisis it stepped up: calling regular customers to keep in touch, giving away Easter eggs, celebrating milestone birthdays with regulars and providing over 50,000 meals to local communities.

 

#MeccaTogether

As all this great work went on, #MeccaTogether was born to keep the community connected, albeit remotely. Alongside this reactive activity, we recognised the importance of having a strong strategy ready to go ahead of our being able to announce the reopening of clubs. A crucial part of this was getting the messaging right to reassure customers that everything possible was being done to keep them safe when they were ready to return. Alongside our client, we were proactive and started planning for reopening from the moment the doors closed. The key to success was this preparation and forward planning, preparing our materials in plenty of time and creating a clear narrative – bingo is back and it’s safe to come to Mecca.

 

Bringing Bingo Back

This preparation put us in good stead to be the first bingo brand to announce reopening, and meant we were ready to go in response to the Government announcement. We identified key opportunities with media targets aligned to Mecca’s audience and offered exclusive first look access to the new way to play and visit Mecca.

As part of their ‘Bounce Back Britain’ campaign, The Sun Online came to Mecca Dagenham and made an exclusive video feature showing the new safety measures in place and interviewing Mecca’s Head of Venues. The video landed all key messages and featured alongside photos to show how the new Mecca Bingo experience would look so customers could get more insight.

We had a LOT of fun working with ITV’s This Morning, getting Alison Hammond into Mecca Oldbury for a live broadcast segment. She was brilliant and even had a go calling bingo numbers whilst Ruth and Eamonn played along in the studio, which saw Ruth win! To extend the relevance of this live piece online as people watched, we also created a play along game for our audiences that was shared via Mecca social channels.

The next step to tell more of the story behind Mecca bringing bingo back was a wide media sell in to national and regional titles. This secured over 300 pieces of coverage and saw Press Association, Getty and Reuters visit Mecca Luton on the night of opening.

 

Celebrating a (socially distant) Full House

Not only has Mecca Bingo reshaped the experience for customers to ensure safety with measures such as social distancing, hand sanitiser stations, a capacity cap and use of technology but is also evolving its offering to broaden beyond bingo and firmly put itself on the map as a great entertainment offer. We helped them to tell this story in all reopening comms and we’re looking forward to working with the Mecca team to celebrate and hero some of the brilliant upcoming events.

MENTORING IS A SUPERPOWER NOT TO BE TAKEN LYING DOWN

MENTORING IS A SUPERPOWER NOT TO BE TAKEN LYING DOWN

I never had a mentor when I was working my way up through the agency ranks, so when someone suggested that I should become one, my initial reaction was to decline. I made the same excuses that I use for avoiding the gym; no time and I don’t have the technique – a classic case of imposter syndrome.

Looking back, I had a subconscious fear of giving the wrong advice and being judged. I thought I wasn’t high profile or experienced enough to be a mentor. It was all in my head but feeling self-conscious is one of the biggest barriers to discovering what could turn out be a mentoring superpower!

To clarify, I’m not claiming that being a mentor makes you a hero (although I love the idea of wearing a cape to my next session), but it does have a positive impact on mental health – for both the mentee and the mentor. And, as many people are still working remotely and are anxious about their futures, the need for a mentor has never been so relevant.

 

What is a mentor?

Not to be confused with coaching, which addresses specific goals, mentoring is about the longer-term holistic development of a mentee. A mentor looks at the bigger picture by assessing overall strengths and weaknesses, and by helping the mentee to realise their own potential for themselves.

So why is mentoring good for mental health?

 

It reduces the feeling of isolation

You don’t have to be living alone or working remotely to feel isolated. Not having anyone to open up to can make your working life feel lonely. Having a mentor, a trusted confidante, can make a huge difference. Simply getting a different perspective and encouraged to find your own solution to a problem gives a sense of relief and empowerment.

K-PowIt helps combat anxiety

Most people experience some level of work-related anxiety, that’s normal. But, add a global pandemic and economic crisis to the mixing pot and anxiety levels can bubble over. It can be hard for people to share their feelings because they’re worried that it will reflect negatively on them, which creates even more anxiety. A mentor helps to get under the skin of the issue; to break it down and tear it apart, before guiding the mentee to find practical ways to move forward.

 

It boosts confidence

Mentees frequently report an increase in their self-confidence because they feel supported.

The relationship with a mentor gives a mentee a safe space to share their thoughts and ideas without fear of judgement. In turn, they get validation from someone with more experience, who they trust and admire. But it’s not just the mentees that benefit. Mentors also experience a confidence boost – the very act of helping someone else to reach their goals, and overcome hurdles provides a sense of achievement.

 

MENTORING MYTHS

A mentor can transform lives but, to do that effectively, you must get past some myths. Here are a few that I overcame:

“I don’t have anything to offer”

Nonsense. You’re a skilled professional that’s being paid to do what you do.

“I don’t have time”

Do what you can. An hour a month is plenty. A mentoring session can happen over a coffee, or a zoom call – whatever works best for you. I’m still too busy for the gym though.

“I’ve never had a mentor, so I can’t be one”

I’m living proof that, that’s not true.

“I cannot relate”

I’m currently mentoring a counsellor with his own practice, an entrepreneur through Virgin StartUp and various people through the PRCA – none of them operate in the sectors that I’m experienced in.

“I am responsible for all of my mentee’s decisions”

Not true. Your role as a mentor is to help the mentee think outside the box and explore all avenues before making ‘their own’ decisions.

spiderman

 

“I haven’t reached my full potential”

That’s good. You’re still striving. But, mentoring isn’t about you reaching your potential, it’s about helping others to reach theirs.

“I can save them!”

I love your enthusiasm and how you’ve moved from imposter syndrome to having a saviour complex! But seriously, mentors aren’t superheroes and are not here to save anyone. But, if they use their superpower wisely, it can be transformative for both parties.

mentoring superwoman

Influencer culture in Lockdown: where do we go from here?

Influencer culture in Lockdown: where do we go from here?

A lot has been said about COVID-19 marking the end of influencer culture as we know it. Consumers are tired of seeing social stars brag about their lavish lifestyles or preaching from their #gifted million pound home, promoting products that we ALL know they don’t and would never use – Khloe Kardashian and Febreeze, what?!

I get it and we have felt the same. Particularly as we navigate what is going to be an incredibly difficult few months for everyone.

However, for all the covidiot influencers who have got it seriously wrong, a lot have also risen to the occasion, helping to spread important messages to otherwise hard to reach, younger audiences.

As these uncertain times continue (sorry!) and conflicting messages and cluttered news just gets worse, audiences are desperately looking for people who they can connect with, trust and rely on – the micro influencer. Those who are genuinely experiencing the same things their audience are and who can share real content their followers can relate to.

In Finland, social influencers have actually been defined as ‘critical operators’ throughout the pandemic. They have used their platform to communicate Government guidelines and speak to a traditionally hard to reach audience. And what better way to reach your audience than working with the people you are trying to reach?

Influencers are always a key part of our campaigns and although the big names out there will always be big, it’s the micro influencers who are coming out on top for our clients at the moment.

Throughout lockdown, we’ve run influencer campaigns for the Scottish Government, Young Scot and Baxters to name a few – all of which have been used to spread a message quickly and efficiently, something a traditional media campaign just couldn’t do.

But why micro influencers?  They are the most flexible and can create content quickly that is authentic and believable. They are close to their audience and know what they respond well to. With fewer followers, they are much more likely to engage and respond to comments – they genuinely care and want to help their followers, which reflects well on the brands we work with. Finally, they are real. Without management teams, ulterior motives or big production budgets, their content is incredibly personal and personable and resonates with their audience better.

Post-pandemic, I think we can expect to see all influencers take a step back and take stock of the content they’re sharing. The high profile, aspirational type content still has its place but moving forward, honesty and authenticity is going to be key.

WORK FOR CHANGE: EFFECTIVE CHANGE COMMUNICATION

WORK FOR CHANGE: EFFECTIVE CHANGE COMMUNICATION

If 2020 has taught me anything, it’s that everyone and everything can change.

Over the last few months people, governments and organisations around the world have been forced to transform how they work at a pace that’s been dubbed a new “industrial revolution” by some analysts. As we all navigate this change, trust in leadership, remote technology and honest, authentic, effective communication have never been more important.

At Stripe we’ve supported our clients as they adapted their communications to resonate, reassure and engage with customers, service users, employees and stakeholders in new ways. The recent pace of change has been incredible and largely born out of necessity, but here are some of my observations from recent experience that I believe would apply at any time:

  • Leadership is key. Visible leadership and trust in our leaders is absolutely vital, so buy-in from the top is essential. Whether that’s weekly video updates from the CEO, employee team briefings or regular email communication, the right level of communication provides reassurance that the best plan is in place.
  • Nothing is more powerful than our emotions. We’ve all experienced fear, anxiety and hope over the last few months and the best performing brands responded by investing time in research to understand their audience and working hard to humanise their communications. They helped customers and service users feel in control amid a world of chaos.
  • Take time to do a pulse check. Use data, insights and measurement to understand how people feel and track how things are changing. Whether that’s bespoke market research, the YouGov public monitor or a quick employee pulse survey.
  • Listen and learn from employees on the frontline. Remote working technology has given employees more opportunities to have their voices heard and influence organisational change. It’s a two-way conversation and the best businesses take employee feedback seriously and put insights into practice.
  • The right technology is transformative. Zoom, Slack, Teams, Yammer and Miro already existed but for most organisations uptake was low. Out of necessity businesses around the world took a leap into remote working technology without the chance to review what would be most effective. As businesses continue to adapt to new technology, now is the time to re-examine what’s in place and seek ways to make workforces more connected while introducing automation and artificial intelligence tools into everyday practice. If you’ve taken the first step into transformative tech, what’s next?
  • Authenticity and creativity matter more than ever. Honesty, transparency and bold creative ideas need to be at the heart of communications as people increasingly question what they see, hear and read like never That’s come to the fore during the Black Lives Matter movement as brands are increasingly scrutinised on their stance and support – with brands like Yorkshire Tea and Ben & Jerry’s recognised for authentic responses.

Change is never easy but it has the potential to unlock innovation and make us think differently. The right change helps us achieve better business, create a better society and to better us as individuals.

Last week I saw a post on Instagram that made me question whether our experiences in 2020 have changed us for the better. I liked it. I wasn’t alone – 464,000 other people liked it too.