PR Predictions for 2022Josephine Melvinon January 19, 2022 at 14:28 TechRound


Explore predictions on what PR will look like in 2022 from TechRound’s panel of experts.
The past few years have greatly impacted the way many operate in their business, including PR – which trends from 2021 will thrive throughout the new year? 
We’ve collected predictions from experts in the field, including Foundation’s Emma Hull, Rise at Seven’s Will Hobson and more.

Here at TechRound, we’ve collected expert predictions on what to expect from PR this year. With 2022 still in its first month, explore what’s in store for PR from top experts in the field…

Explore top tips from startups on how to approach PR here.


Our Panel of PR Experts:

Fiona Scott – Managing Director of Scott Media
Babar Khan Javed – Director of Z2C Limited
Ilona Hitel – Managing Director at CommsCo
Will Hobson – PR + London Director at Rise at Seven
Emma Hull – PR Specialist at Foundation
Siena Clarke – Founder and Director of The Brand Whisperer
Riannon Palmer – Director of Lem-uhn
Andrea Sexton – CEO/Founder at Admire PR
Lisa Gibson – Senior PR Lead at Yours Sincerely
Pearl M. Kasirye – Co-Founder at Pearl Lemon PR
Fatema Chowdhury – PR & Media Lead at SQN
Gabrielle Pickens – Founder of Pickens Creative
Connie Chi – Founder of The Chi Group
Dr. Contrecia T. Tharpe – Chief Storyteller & Strategist at FayeVaughn Creative
Dominic K. Hawkins – Founder and Principal at Factotum Consulting
Melanie Marten – Founder of
Ayelet Noff – Founder and CEO of SlicedBrand
Liz Mckenzie – Head Of Marketing Communications at Serai
Darryl Sparey – Co-Founder and Managing Director of Hard Numbers
Jacki Vause – Founder and CEO of Dimoso
Natalie Trice – Career Coach and Founder of Devon Trice Public Relations
Beth Nunnington – PR Director at Journey Further


For any questions, comments or features, please contact us directly.



Fiona Scott, Managing Director of Scott Media



Fiona Scott has run Scott Media, based in Wiltshire, for 14 years and is a qualified journalist & tv producer/director with a 30 year career in newspapers and tv. She was voted the UK’s Top PR Adviser 2021 recently by SME organisation Enterprise Nation. She can be found here –

“As the new year dawns here are ten tips for great PR in 2022:”

1. “Video will be bigger than ever. Research and engage on YouTube and share your stories and news in video format too across various social media channels. Not only is it the most powerful way to tell stories it has huge SEO benefits.”

2. “The continued rise of the MICRO-INFLUENCER. Think selling via social media, think of having a brand ambassador with a small but committed following – look at TikTok to see what I mean.”

3. “Digital content should be more ‘SEARCH’ orientated. What questions are our customers likely to be asking? Answer them with more Q&A style articles or ‘listicles’.”

4. “Demonstrate COLLABORATION. I believe this will be a key theme in business and life generally and share details of those collaborations.”

5. “Openly embrace being GREEN. Increasingly bigger brands will only work with those in their supply chain who can demonstrate green ethics and a move towards net zero. Start on that journey now.”

6. “Show you care – GIVING BACK to your community through supporting a charity, community project or social enterprise. Always powerful for PR, increasingly it will be part of any bid for bigger contracts. Social responsibility could be the one thing which gets you across the line.”

7. “Take the WELL BEING of your team more seriously than ever and do PR around this. Recruitment and retention is an issue in the tech world so make a noise about what you can offer to an employee, over and above salary.”

8. “Look for stories in your DATA – it often holds stories which are left untold.”

9. “Can you EDUCATE? – if you know there’s a change in the law that’s coming up which is relevant to your business, your clients and others then share that information as early as possible. It makes you a thought leader and very attractive to the media.”

10. “Show HUMOUR – many businesses never look for more light-hearted opportunities to shine. Comedy is a great way to share a serious or worthy message and to emotionally engage people. Done in the right way, it’s powerful.”


Babar Khan Javed, Director of Z2C Limited



“2022 is the year that public relations and public affairs professionals will embrace new ways of measuring the effectiveness of their work.”

“Using tools such as Walee Enterprise, our PR efforts map out a range of scenarios and trackers with which we can see a crisis unfolding in real-time, prepare responses accordingly, and get ahead of the story before the media or press control the narrative. Given that our PR efforts rely entirely on earned and organic media, we have seen how the market perceptions finally accept that paid media is a tool to amplify the reach of the earned press or mentions, instead of trying to buy one’s way to coverage.”

“We expect to see more instances of the PR function reporting directly to the CEO, instead of reporting to the CMO or CCO. This approach has a wealth of ROI behind it, evidenced by our recent successes since mid-2021 in reaching the tier-1 press entirely through quality organic pitches, resulting in measurable traction.”


For any questions, comments or features, please contact us directly.



Ilona Hitel, Managing Director at CommsCo



“Here are a few 2022 PR predictions from me…”

“More personal contact, please! Face to face and events will hopefully be back in 2022. Re-building relationships will be key.”
“UK tech sector, and indeed most sectors, will need strong PR to recruit and compete for the best talent given the dire skills shortage.”
“There will be a rise in diversity and inclusion PR campaigns. Wellbeing will also be key to brands in their story telling.”
“It will be a big year for environmental campaigns with extreme weather events on the rise like never before.”
“There will be an increase in companies being called out for greenwashing and getting egg on their face.”


Will Hobson, PR + London Director at Rise at Seven



“As we head into 2022, expect more brands to jump on Reactive PR. At Rise at Seven, we began to see last year that reactive strategies were helping our clients stand out in the competitive market.”
“Reactive PR is all about jumping on trending news topics offering a unique comment, piece of data, or opinion. In 2021, we landed over 400 media placements for a sneaker brand we work with when we jumped on the buzz around ‘Squid Game’ and the increase in demand for white vans. By using this approach we were able to put our client’s brand at the heart of this trending topic landing coverage in global publications.”
“This kind of strategy is going to have huge implications for the industry in 2022 but in order to be successful with this marketing tactic, speed and relevancy are key. By turning a comment around quickly that gives the journalist a strong opinion, this approach has the potential to be even more effective than large marketing campaigns for brands – just by using speed as a competitive advantage”.

For any questions, comments or features, please contact us directly.



Emma Hull, PR Specialist at Foundation



“While we saw that digital PR was overtaking traditional PR in terms of what people were looking for, and what services were being offered in the past twelve months, I feel that the switch to digital may come sooner rather than later this year.”

“Companies that had previously considered digital PR but for whatever reason let it slide, may pick it up sooner than expected after the huge switch to digital for consumers. Some companies may have switched in 2021 in offering digital PR services, but some may have thought the pandemic would’ve ended sooner (didn’t we all!) therefore there would’ve been no need to change any strategies.”

“I think digital PR is going to be at the front of everyone’s mind as oppose to traditional PR such as radio, magazines and newspapers etc, because sadly more people use the internet on a day-to-day basis than any other media. Plus, companies want to know exactly what they’re getting for their money, and results are a lot easier to measure using digital tools!”


Siena Clarke, Founder and Director of The Brand Whisperer 



“Over the course of 2021 PR saw many innovations and changes, however for 2022 things will hopefully stabilise. Speed pitching sessions and on-screen meetings will establish themselves in the norm, as editors and journalists become more and more reluctant to travel and waste working time getting to meetings that could take 15 minutes in the comfort of their home office.”

“PR will continue to steer the course of home wellbeing, mental health and medical reporting, as the public search for real news and solutions to more problems thrown up by various elements of the pandemic.”


For any questions, comments or features, please contact us directly.



Riannon Palmer, Director of Lem-uhn



“Since launching last year, we’ve seen a huge interest in the positive focus of our company as we prioritise happiness for both clients and employees. Companies are switching onto the importance of ensuring the partners you work with are ethical whether that’s their treatment of their employees or their sustainability strategies.”
“Digital PR will also continue to dominate the industry in 2022, with SEO a priority for many brands. As PR is such an effective way to improve SEO, many companies will continue to turn to professionals for help securing links in high-ranking online titles. It only takes a few high-ranking links to a company’s site to see them at the top of search rankings.”

Andrea Sexton, CEO/Founder at Admire PR



“I’ve dusted off my crystal ball (again!) – what will be relevant for your business in the PR world over the next year?”

“2022 comes in the wake of a global pandemic, and during a period of great uncertainty, it is important to regularly assess the environment around you and decide how to approach your business plan.”

“Here are some ideas that I think will be relevant for PR over the next year…”

It will continue to be important to showcase how you are ‘doing good’ as a business: “One of the great things to come out of 2021 is the increased interest in sustainability in business. The great news for you in terms of PR is that business journalists are keen to have positive stories, there is enough negativity in the world.”

“Those business leaders who can showcase steps towards concrete sustainability plans or through community or charity partnerships will be in demand for press stories and comments.”

Social, audio and video (multimedia content) will take on more importance: “As we are still in the midst of a pandemic, many of our work has turned online. Similarly, as we stay at home, more of us spend time on our phones or gadgets, instead of going outside of our houses. Henceforth, it is vital that we continue to factor in the importance of social media and multimedia content in 2022. Many media publications now include social media, audio and video as part of their news and editorial content.”

“Keep an eye on new platforms and the audiences they serve. For example, platforms like TikTok have grown exponentially in the last two years. If you are looking to target a younger audience, TikTok is inarguably one of the best possible ways to reach your desired audience.”

It will be even more important to use technology to measure campaign results: “Technology is always growing and progressing, and that is the same in the PR world. With many marketing budgets being cut, showing the results of campaigns is vital. PR has a reputation as being a bit fluffy and hard to measure. This is absolutely not the case – there are several ways to showcase the results from PR, and they can be tailored to each client. Platforms such as Ace Media , Agility and CoverageBook are essential for us as an agency.”


For any questions, comments or features, please contact us directly.



Lisa Gibson, Senior PR Lead at Yours Sincerely



“PR in 2022 will be all about speaking truth to power – after the last two years we’ve all had enough corporate and political bullsh*t to last a lifetime.”

“Across business and consumer audiences, people are more cynical than ever and good PR professionals will recognise that. Successful brands and individuals will have an authentic voice, telling good, honest stories in a changed world.”

“ESG and D&I are more important than ever but campaigns will have to be based on tangible actions and reliable data. The good news is that, because of all this, good communicators will be needed more than ever.”


Pearl M. Kasirye, Co-Founder at Pearl Lemon PR



1. “PR agencies will have to start utilising platforms like TikTok, Twitch, YouTube, and Snapchat a lot more than ever before.”

2. “Reputation management will be in high demand due to how easy it has become for brands to be defamed by people running hate campaigns.”

3. “Press releases will become less and less meaningful in impacting brand image.”



Fatema Chowdhury, PR & Media Lead at SQN



“Purpose-led, socially conscious communications and campaigns will become even more prominent in 2022, as consumers increasingly hold brands accountable for their messaging and actions.”

“From sustainability, climate change to diversity and inclusion, these can no longer be buzzwords and companies need to show just how they’re also making conscientious decisions. We’ve already seen this with net-zero pledges from companies on the back of COP26 and diversity pledges on the back of the Black Lives Matter movement but companies will need to go further and show just exactly how they’re doing that and show results. Consumers are making more conscious decisions when investing in a brands, products or a personality and will be loyal to brands that align most with their values.”

“In an increasingly digital age, the appeal for a human voice and emotion is stronger than ever. Consumers are looking for a personal touch from brands and in 2022, we’ll see them embrace a personalised approach to PR and how brands communicate with their consumers generally, whether that’s through social media, on the phone, by email or through a website. We’ve seen this reflected in trends such as the phenomenal growth of TikTok, where mobile phone-filmed viral videos made by ordinary people sharing personal moments. This has also resulted in a new wave of influencers hitting the scene, increasing the variety for brands to choose from.”


Gabrielle Pickens, Founder at Pickens Creative



“Remote public relations professionals will prevail in 2022. Hyper-personalised client experiences and carefully vetted experts will draw in both corporate leaders and small business owners as they seek immediate relief to support their PR/Marketing efforts in the next year.”
“The Great Resignation’s meteoric impact on the workforce left big PR firms with holes that used to be filled with highly qualified, yet underpaid talent. Independent professionals who pivot and quickly adapt to the growing virtual economy will get first dibs on high-paying opportunities that align with their values and financial goals. It’s a win-win for all parties involved.”

For any questions, comments or features, please contact us directly.



Connie Chi, Founder of The Chi Group



“Virtual events will continue to be on the rise as companies have seen the success of virtual eventing during the pandemic. This means that PR pros will have to include virtual events in their PR strategies.”

“We’re going to continue to see the rise of micro-influencers across social media platforms. The influencer marketing stratosphere is becoming crowded and that is why brands are turning to micro-influencers as they will get more value there.”

“Lastly, consumers will be continually looking for brands to take a stand. Whether it’s climate change or women’s equality it’s important that brands align with a social cause that is meaningful to them, therefore we’ll also see a rise the non-profits.”


Dr. Contrecia T. Tharpe, Chief Storyteller & Strategist at FayeVaughn Creative



“Pubic relations is an everchanging field and the clearly defined border around it will continue to blur. What once stood independently yet supplemental to marketing and branding is now becoming intricately woven into each part of acquisition, outreach, awareness, and growth efforts.”

“In 2022, we will continue to see brands and businesses craft authentic, vulnerable, and transparent messaging and communication content that will capture the hearts and minds of their intended audiences. Public relations strategies will center around relatability and inclusivity. While media relations and pitching will still be a major component in the industry, the increased presence of paywalls will have brands, businesses, and PR practitioners getting creative in using owned mediums, content types, and venues to distribute content and information leading to more traffic, follows, and newsletter subscriptions.”

“We will see an increase in organic content, videos, social media usage and posts, and website updates, as well as brand activations and events.”

“2022 will be a year of traditional public relations wrapped in unconventional methods to deliver true impact and reach.”


For any questions, comments or features, please contact us directly.



Dominic K. Hawkins, Founder and Principal at Factotum Consulting



“The industry has grown markedly since my first job in PR 10 years ago. In 2022, I predict we’ll continue on our J-curve acceleration towards digitisation.”

More experimentation with augmented and virtual reality experiential marketing: “In the age of covid, people crave human connection but want to limit covid exposure. With the introduction of Meta (fka Facebook) and virtual conference platforms, the virtual reality world is the next digital frontier, driven by VR headsets.”

Sponcon/Advertorials: “With shrinking newsrooms and reporters being asked to do more with less combined with publications seeking to uncover new revenue sources, we’ll see more movement towards sponsored content and advertorials in online and digital news outlets.”

Digital Community Engagement: “Social media ‘Influencers’ are out and ‘Creators’ are in. Social media influencing is not just about the number of followers influencers have, it’s all about how engaged their community is. In 2022, Micro-influencers will rise. We’ll also see more online community engagement through apps like TikTok, Discord, Reddit, and Clubhouse.”

PR Technology: “Given tightening resources, there will be more emphasis on PR technology that can provide reporting and metrics to demonstrate return on investment.”


Melanie Marten, Founder of



“DIY PR is on the rise. In 2022, start-up entrepreneurs will increasingly engage in PR activities themselves to boost the visibility of their business.”

“This trend follows the growing importance of PR for overall marketing success – from SEO to Content to Sales. DIY PR efforts, in addition to the start-up’s PR campaigns, are most effective when performed to support link building.”

“The most promising tactic of DIY PR is responding to source requests on platforms where journalists search for expert quotes to include in their articles. The most popular platforms are HARO (Help A Reporter Out) and Qwoted. Here, the entrepreneur not only has the opportunity to build up a profile as a thought leader, but unique content is generated with a backlink to the start-up which supports SEO.”

“Another DIY PR tactic that has proven highly successful for start-ups is the submission of entrepreneur interviews in specialised media outlets such as Authority Magazine. This particular PR activity supports Content, Thought Leadership and SEO. In addition, founder interviews tend to have higher interaction when shared on the start-up’s social media channels as a success story.”

“Entrepreneurs need to be careful though when handling the distribution and pitching of the start-up’s general press releases. While the landscape of PR outreach platforms has grown tremendously in recent years, PR pitches should NOT be handled through a CRM system that pretends to do PR and sends automatic follow-ups on your generic pitches. Public Relations need time and effort, therefore entrepreneurs are advised to hand this task over to a professional who specialises in building real relationships with the media for your start-up full-time.”


For any questions, comments or features, please contact us directly.



Ayelet Noff, Founder and CEO of SlicedBrand



“Talk of the metaverse, web3, NFTs, and DAOs has been buzzing in the tech scene, but the general public is still trying to figure out what’s in it for them. On top of that, there’s a lot of jockeying for position in these areas, and startups are trying to figure out how to stand out from the pack. PR pros will be focused on developing key messages and USPs to make themselves rise above the noise.”

“For example, online gaming in the metaverse has the potential to skyrocket in growth, but companies will need to move beyond appealing to the existing gamer community to attract the general public.”

“The new year will also see the opposite happening, with companies in traditional industries becoming more tech-focused. For example, Christie’s has been cultivating a new type of customer base by embracing digital art, NFTs, and cryptocurrency payments.”

“As the metaverse becomes more talked about in the mainstream and the pandemic continues, there will be a shift in virtual events. The industry is still trying to find its footing, and 2022 will be the year of immersive experiences. We’ll see brands from nearly every industry exploring ways to connect with the public through VR and AR components, as well as looking into new metaverse technologies as they develop further.”

“Finally, journalists are becoming increasingly cynical when it comes to buzzwords, and I predict that we’ll see a general backlash against these in 2022. We already saw some evidence of that from reporters reacting to the slew of metaverse pitches right after Facebook rebranded as Meta. PR pros will have to tread a fine line when it comes to generating hype, in order to prevent reporters from being turned off of new tech developments that are truly bringing value to people’s lives.”


Liz Mckenzie, Head Of Marketing Communications at Serai



“As we step into the new year, we pause to think about the macroenvironment and what’s in store for brands in 2022. The role of PR is going to be more valuable than ever. Especially when it comes to crisis and reputation management. It will be wise to empower everyone within an organisation to play a bigger role in building a company’s brand reputation, from being product evangelists and thought-leaders, and being equipped with the proper training to handle positive and negative feedback. This is especially important in today’s social media age, where everyone is susceptible to
criticism 24/7, and the same reputational stakes that were once targeted at the C-suite are now applicable to everyone else.”

“So, what’s driving this phenomenon? A good example is the current climate surrounding supply chains in the apparel and fashion industry, and its renewed commitments at the recent COP26. It’s no surprise that today’s consumer expectation for corporate accountability and more ethical practices are a key driving force behind purchasing behaviour, as found in a recent Serai/KPMG report ( Every role along the supply chain – from suppliers of raw materials, to manufacturers, to buyers – contributes to the end product. This means that now more than ever, there are a multitude of blind spots for error, and as a result, we’re seeing a greater demand for transparency along the supply chain.”

“This is where PR in the form of crisis communications and stakeholder management comes in. Consumers want brands to be a force for good. There’s a huge opportunity to support ESG efforts which can also result in a positive impact on the company’s bottom line.”


For any questions, comments or features, please contact us directly.



Darryl Sparey, Co-Founder and Managing Director of Hard Numbers



“The tech PR sector, particularly the B2B tech space, will continue to grow rapidly in 2022. Whilst 73.2% of all statistics are made up for PR purposes, looking across the industry, I would estimate that 95% of the new spend on PR is coming from tech businesses. With VC investment, especially in fintech and healthtech, at record levels, agencies with a focus on B2B tech PR will continue to perform well.”

“You only have to look at this year’s CES event to see that large in-person events will continue to struggle in the short-to-medium term. This will lead companies to direct their marketing and communications budgets towards agencies that can help them deliver smaller, own branded experiences for their clients and prospects.”

“Based on our experience over the last year, I predict the demand for the traditional agency network model for international communications will decline. Client demand will continue to move towards more agile approaches to international media relations. For example, not having “always on” PR agencies in non-core markets, investing instead in a strong central hub, typically out of the UK or US.”

“The increasing demand for demonstrable ROI from PR and communications campaigns will also continue. Clients need to be able to show where they are getting a return on their investment, in all marketing disciplines. The agencies that meet this requirement will be the ones that can pull data together from different sources, and show the impact of their work. Those that succeed will be the ones that can best link activity with business outcomes. In short, those that can deliver hard numbers, not soft words.”


Jacki Vause, Founder and CEO of Dimoso



“Public relations is constantly evolving. To be successful with communications you have to move away from a broadcast mentality and adopt a strategic approach, based on building a dialogue with your stakeholders. Public relations and media relations are often confused: media relations is just part of the suite of services a PR agency or consultant offers. Public relations is about the creation and management of reputation, and building a relationship with the public. Reputation nowadays is shaped by numerous channels of communication and most of those are interactive.”

“When you are communicating, your messages and dialogue must be aligned across all channels to ensure optimal coverage, cohesion and clarity amongst the target stakeholder groups. Your audience desires and demands two-way conversation: people now know the power of their opinion and expect it to be heard. Two-way communication is paramount to the future success of any business, product or service.”

“We are experiencing a communications revolution: people and groups who traditionally did not have a voice are now shaping opinion. We are now moving into a creator economy – where all individuals can share and broadcast opinions on their creations and those of others. In 2022 all communicators need to be all over this.”

“The businesses that are starting to thrive are those that are taking advantage of UGC (user-generated content) and PR will have to align itself with UGC and build this into its messaging and dialogues. There is a major opportunity for brands to work closely with their stakeholder groups and build a binding meaningful relationship with them by encouraging and embracing UGC.”


For any questions, comments or features, please contact us directly.



Natalie Trice, Career Coach and Founder of Devon Trice Public Relations



“The past two years have totally taken the wind out of the sails of PR professionals, regardless of lovely or be it in agencies, in-house or as an independent.”

“With that said, in 2022 as well as tuning into the needs of clients, and the media, I predict that there will be a real need to look after ourselves.”

“We all know that PR isn’t ER but it there are multiple demands on those working in the profession and it’s vital that we consider the impact the pandemic has had on those in our teams, the ones we work with and the people we manage.”

“The need to look after the mental well-being of the industry is key in 2022 to ensure we keep the pool of people we have and we keep them safe. From weekly check ins and taking annual leave, to in-depth reviews and adequate training and support, we have to look out for each other.”

“Yes, we are, by default of the work we do, resilient, ambitious and hardworking but let’s not forget we are human and while smashing KPIs is great, I predicate that 2022 is the year the PR world looks after themselves as well as their clients.”


Beth Nunnington, PR Director at Journey Further



Relevancy will remain the biggest factor when it comes to links: “I’ve seen several people in the industry say that relevancy will be a huge focus in 2022, but this has been our focus for several years now. What’s changed is the technology we now have available to us to be able to understand and assign quantifiable metrics to the relevance of linking coverage – which allows us to be much more data-driven and targeted when developing Digital PR strategies.”

“The outcome of which – is much more focused, effective, and measurable Digital PR activity that is better aligned to SEO objectives and that delivers better ROI for clients. Google’s representative, John Mueller, coming out in 2021 and saying that ‘the total number of links’ doesn’t matter at all, has really helped refocus the industry and re-evaluated what metrics and KPIs we need to be focusing on this year.”

Google will continue to use AI and Machine Learning to better understand the context and intent of searches: “Google is continuously looking to improve its intelligence through machine learning and natural language understanding. This could impact PR as Google can increasingly understand the information in non-text based content – such as images and video. Therefore, content must be relevant and on-brand in the written form, as well as ensuring that any supporting assets are also relevant to the services or products that the brand sells. Creating content that can be utilised cross-channel will be more important than ever as brands look to drive not only performance, but brand awareness too.”

A combination of campaign + tactical activity will deliver better results than a campaign-only based approach: “It’s getting harder to get results from “link bait” type campaigns that used to be the go-to approach for building links in large volumes. Instead, brands will need to adopt an ‘always on’ approach, with larger campaign spikes at key points in the year. With an ever-changing media landscape and market in place still due to Covid-19, I expect a lot of tactical activity to continue – to allow PR teams to be fluid and reactive with their approach.”


For any questions, comments or features, please contact us directly.



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