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04 / 01 / 23

What Are Digital PR Trends and Why Are They So Valuable?


Rebecca Moss

5 minute read

Trendspotting – something that you might associate with leading fashionistas and interior designers, but where do PRs get their digital trend insights and why is it so important to spot a trend before it’s too late? 

Here at JBH, we’re dedicated to staying ahead of the game. We’re always on the hunt for the latest trends and crazes consumers are looking for, meaning the best possible coverage opportunities for the brands we work with. 

Whether we’re pitching affordable beauty products to resurrect celeb-style bleached brows, sparking conversations about how sustainable the next World Cup will be or showcasing the perfect ingredients for a Negroni Sbagliato (with prosecco in it!) – we’re using our knowledge, tools and insight to be quick off the mark and keep our brands in front of journalists all year round. 

We’ve asked our team of PR experts what they expect to see plenty more of in 2023 based on the last few months of trending topics. Here’s what they’ve had to say…

Expert-led Coverage

Our Senior Digital PR Executive, Hannah Ratcliffe, has seen an increase in articles positioned from an expert angle over the recent months. 

“I’ve seen a lot of expert-led pieces of coverage with headlines starting ‘I’m an X Expert’ in the news recently. Now is a great time to take a look at the brands on your roster and think about what they can position themselves as experts for.

For example, if you have a client that provides home insurance you could position them as home care experts, particularly during times like now when more people are wanting to know how to take care of their home’s structural integrity during winter without spending a fortune on heating.”

Data-led Trends

It might sound obvious, but for a trend to be a trend, there needs to be proof that it’s actually trending – try saying that after a glass of wine!

Our Digital PR Director, Rebecca Moss, believes “Using tools like Google Trends and Glimpse you can find data to back up your predictions and also find out exactly when trends are seeing more pickup. If you have a recurring trending search, such as ‘Halloween costume ideas’ which appear every October at around the same time, you can use this insight to draft, sign off and pitch out relevant products and brands in plenty of time for journalists writing their pieces.”

Film Fashion & TikTok Health Trends

Be honest; how many Hellfire Club T-shirts have you seen over the past six months? That’s because trending TV shows, such as the return of Netflix’s Stranger Things, influence the way their audiences will want to dress and present themselves. 

“Netflix is a huge inspiration for fashion trends – we’ve seen it with Wednesday bringing back the emo aesthetic and with Bridgerton as people are now styling their bedrooms to match the period aesthetic. 

“I think shows and movies on streaming platforms will continue to be a source of inspiration next year as more highly-anticipated releases take to our screens,” explains Junior Digital PR Manager, Abi Fairfoull

Short-form video platforms such as TikTok and Instagram’s reels have also been the birthplace of many trending topics including health tips and fads.
“Through both the good and the bad, TikTok has been the go-to platform for health and wellbeing trends this year. Journalists love to write about them – especially ones that can be debunked, ruled out as myths or considered dangerous.” adds Abi

‘Quality Over Quantity’ Pitching

PRs are moving away from a ‘spray-and-pray’ approach to pitching and favouring a more targeted approach. 

“I think PR professionals will start to turn away from mass email outreach pitching and instead look at different media opportunities with a quality-over-quantity mindset. They’ll probably turn to tools like Response Source and HARO as well as feature pitching and newsjacking activity. 

“Relevance is far more important to a brand than having hundreds of links and brand mentions in a publication that their target audience isn’t reading.” explains Sophie Clinton, Junior Digital PR Manager. 

Sophie also predicts that authenticity will become a big factor, which comes hand-in-hand with relevance. 

“Relevant, authentic content and campaigns will be exactly what brands are looking for from their PR partners.” 

Improving Digital PR and Traditional PR Measurement

The value of digital PR and traditional PR coverage will continue to shift from mass coverage to targeted, relevant coverage as brands become increasingly aware of what and where their target audiences are reading.

PR agencies will need to know their brands’ KPIs inside out so they know what they actually want to measure, as well as how important each metric is to their stated business goals. 

James Renhard, Digital PR Manager explains that relevance is and will always be key for brands: 

“Many people I know across the industry are noticing a growing demand for it from the brands they work with. 

“While there will still be some people who want quantity in terms of links, the demand for quality is only going to continue to grow. In turn, an understanding of what makes a good quality piece of coverage is going to be in high demand.” concludes James. 

3 Top Tips for Spotting PR Trends in 2023

Use trendspotting tools to stay ahead of the curve

It’s easy to guess when your audiences will be looking for certain products and/or advice, but it’s even easier to pitch when you have the data to back it up! Get familiar with tools like Google Trends and Glimpse so you can be ready with a pitch when the rise in demand arrives. 

Take in social media

We’re not saying sit on your phone all day scrolling through platforms, but be mindful of the content around you and what your peers are consuming – you never know which video clip or Instagram post you see today might become a new trend tomorrow. Be aware of consumer media platforms – especially those your target audiences are likely to use!

Assess the value of your pitching

Who are you pitching to and why? How relevant is that publication? By focusing on quality over quantity, this kind of coverage is more likely to be seen by the target audiences of the brands you’re working with than it would be in thousands of irrelevant publications.    

Looking for consumer PR coverage like the above? Get in touch today!