Welcome to Rostrum’s new Tips and Tactics series. Here, we will be spotlighting some of the different tools and strategies we use to help us deliver compelling PR, social and marketing campaigns for our clients. 

This week we are looking at how businesses can use calendar hooks and reactive commentary to cement their spokespeople as voices of authority on different topics.  

What are calendar hooks?  

Calendar hooks can take a variety of forms. From awareness days (or weeks and months), to key events, or even dates that reports or statistics are due to be published.  

They often highlight a particular cause or issue and can drive the news agenda, with journalists planning their editorial calendars and features around them.  

At Rostrum, we use calendar hooks to ‘high-jack’ the news, providing our clients with a platform to engage their target audiences whilst aligning their commentary with relevant stories. 

Why do it?  

Linking clients’ messaging to external events not only provides a newsworthy angle which helps when pitching their opinions, but it also showcases them as relevant and timely. It allows spokespeople to be seen as voices of authority on topics they wish to own, and ties them into the wider industry debate around these issues.  

Planning is essential if you are to take advantage of calendar hooks, and at Rostrum we build bespoke editorial and industry-centric PR calendars to highlight these opportunities at the start of each campaign.  

Calendar hooks in action 

Used in the right way, calendar hooks can be a fantastic tool for building brand awareness. Here’s some we did earlier…!

Time to Talk Day (February 2020) 

Time to Talk Day encourages open and honest conversations about mental health. Over the last four years, Rostrum has supported our client Legal & General with its #NotARedCard campaign which aims to highlight the importance of good mental health in the workplace. The 2019 research had revealed that UK businesses risk losing out on top talent due to a lack of mental health policies and support for employees. Time to Talk Day provided the perfect context for us to secure an interview for Nigel Wilson, CEO of Legal & General, on Sky News Ian King Show to discuss the latest findings.  

FCA report (Annual Report and Accounts, September 2020) 

This annual report from the FCA always attracts plenty of media attention and provides a perfect opportunity for advisory firm Duff & Phelps to share their opinions on what outcomes financial service firms want to see from FCA cases. We used this hook to secure commentary from Nick Bayley, Head of UK Regulatory Consulting, in the Financial TimesDuff & Phelps was the only company quoted in the article, alongside the FCA. 

Pensions Awareness Day (September 2020) 

We work with equity release lender, more2life, on a range of PR campaigns and research reports. This year, one of our core studies looked into the significant gender gap in pensions savings. Having produced a campaign report and press release, we utilised Pensions Awareness Day as an opportunity to launch our findings, securing coverage in the Telegraph on the day itself. 

 

Was this useful? Take a look at our other blogs on how to use reactive commentary to cut through the noise and creating impactful freedom of information requests for PR.   

 

Want to hear more? Find out how we can help your business boost its profile by contacting us on +44 (0) 7786 013 599