Fernanda Di Franco
the globe have developed widely
divergent methodologies and styles
over the past few decades.
That variation stems from a variety
of factors including cross-cultural differences, technology and
the media mix available in any given market. The concept and
role of public relations firms, for example, differs greatly
from one nation to the next.
While Brazil exhibits a strong focus
on media relations, the PR industry in other
countries has matured differently. The Brazilian public
relations industry differs significantly from its counterpart in
While not dismissing the importance
of media relations, the American style is characterized by the
widespread use of technology, strategic planning and
quantitative research. These firms create comprehensive
data-driven campaigns, with an approach similar to advertising.
In Brazil, relying on quantitative
research and analysis to drive campaign development can be
While there is a nascent third-party
research community in Brazil and sector-specific trade
associations have contributed to the body of business knowledge
available, the media outlets are often the principal data source
for industry-specific coverage.
Given the lack of reliable data in
many instances, news outlets in Brazil attribute comparatively
less significance to numbers and surveys than their American
counterparts. Furthermore, in the US, the use of corporate press
releases remains a tried and true method for PR firms to
communicate a company’s strategic initiatives.
In Brazil, the use of press releases
may initially appear to be a good way to disseminate information
about a client’s initiatives. However, more often than not, a
press release leaves the Brazilian media completely uninspired.
Effective PR professionals in Brazil
must work with journalists to develop interesting seed ideas for
stories that will capture the attention of the general public
and, by extension, raise awareness of their clients’ projects,
strategies and product releases.
In essence, media relations in
Brazil hinges on forging working partnerships with the general
and trade press in order ensure that the client’s message rises
above the din of an increasingly fragmented and crowded media
Fernanda Di Franco is a journalist, public
advertising agent and historian. She has worked with media
MTV, NHK Japan, CNN, and clients including Kodak, Fuji,
Sanyo, Sony, Aiwa, Goldstar, Burguer King Motorola.
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