Telum Talks To… Nadia Chan, General Manager, PR Communications

Telum Talks To… Nadia Chan, General Manager, PR Communications

Telum caught up with Nadia Chan, General Manager at PR Communications as she shares the challenges lifestyle and luxury industry face in these uncertain times, importance of digital savviness and top tips for brands to maintain engagement with audiences. 

PR Communications core clients comes from mainstream markets like luxury and lifestyle. What are some branding and marketing challenges companies in these markets face in the current new norm? 
In my opinion, companies across various sectors are going through an unprecedented change where they have had to rethink their marketing and branding strategies for the new normal. Besides switching up their efforts to stay adaptable amidst uncertainty, keeping pace with consumers is also creating a challenge for companies that are looking to connect with their target audience. 
Before the pandemic, physical stores and in-store personalised interaction were still relevant. However, COVID-19 has upended the retail industry, abruptly shifting consumers’ purchasing behaviour and shopping habits to the online channel. Since traditional retail dominated the streets before the pandemic, companies today may find it challenging to prioritise their efforts and optimise in-store and digital touchpoints to meet the needs of today’s consumers and drive traffic by dialling up their efforts on physical stores and digital channels.    
We have seen more brands embracing digital transformation in 2020 due to COVID-19. Do you think digital savviness will remain crucial in the year ahead? 
Yes certainly, it has been great witnessing so many companies that have traditionally had little to no digital footprint now rely on digital strategies to communicate with their target audience. The pandemic has undeniably accelerated the shift towards digital as more businesses are embracing digital transformation to grow and thrive in a post-pandemic world with a sustainable business model where digital meets physical. 
More countries are easing some of its COVID-19 restrictions and with this, do you see more brands gearing up to relaunch their offline presence? 
With Singapore in phase 3, our offline interactions have definitely increased. Whilst this is the case, the approach to host such activities has certainly changed a great deal. Brands have had to get used to smaller group activities and perhaps host many more times, compared to what was typically done pre-pandemic. Although the effort to get brand messages across is certainly more challenging these days, small group interactions has allowed us to have many more intimate conversations and has offered a great opportunity to build meaningful relationships. 
The pandemic has massively disrupted our lifestyles, the way we work and interact. Can you share any top tips for brands to maintain engagement with audiences? 
We have always advised our clients to embark on a multi-channel communication approach. With so many options for a brand’s target audience to engage with, it is important that each of them is well covered.  With the pandemic in full swing, the multi-channel approach has certainly become more and more imperative to the success of any brand. If a brand has got this covered, then it really boils down to the percentage of focus on each channel. For example, if customers are stuck home, then a brand should perhaps focus the majority of their efforts on digital and social channels. 
Lastly, where do you think the PR industry is heading to and what changes can we expect? 
The PR industry has changed massively in the last couple of years. Whilst still seen as the main approach to influence brand perception and credibility, now more than ever, PR practitioners have to look at developing integrated programmes that will help brands communicate across various channels. 

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