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Maiko Chitashvili: Be friends with Media, it’s your second half!

Interview with Project Manager of Communications Agency “Publicity Group”, Strategic Communications Expert Maiko Chitashvili

Why did you decide to enter this field, and what kind of opportunities does it give in terms of career growth?

At the age of 18, when I was choosing a profession, I wouldn’t say I knew my dream or desirable profession would be in the direction of communication. Now that I remember, my dreamed looked like being a journalist, working at television, at least being a weather-girl. in the 90s, when I was an school-leaver, it was almost impossible to have an access to this field, and generally, communication and marketing seemed even exotic to us. That was the time I wanted to try something different, and was lucky that Public Relations faculty was opened. I think appearing in this space defined success.

This field developed along with me and my colleagues, when there was time I found it difficult to even explain what this profession meant. We had first NGO working on PR’s development, that now is a part of history. This generation has more resource to make their career better.

Me, my friend and sister established first advertising-education magazine, that was huge innovation back then, we would create, work, and increase demand in this direction ourselves. This is important to create your own image and reputation and make your resource desirable.

What does it take to create successful brand and creative concept, what are the steps for it?

When we start branding, which combines complex activities, it’s important to define who we are, what our audience is like, what we want to show the customer and how we want to be conceived by target group, how to compose and what will it distinguish us in a competitive environment from others that can easily remember our product. These are the basic stages that are necessary during work. However, if you do not have a simple plan with a creative and different approach, what’s outstanding, it will be difficult to talk about a particular result.

Tell us about the most successful campaigns you have implemented and what was the key to success?

Activities in this area does not include work only on campaigns. There are many interesting and memorable details in the strategic planning process and daily activities. I think campaigns are the simplest and most obvious and visible component that I remember most. One of the most interesting campaigns is the last case when I was working on the topic of Mustafa Chabuk, a Turkish teacher, my devoted friend. There was a large scale and multifaceted process, starting from the idea of ​​formation to lobbying campaign at the European Parliament level. Perhaps it is noteworthy as it was not only for one person’s saving to extradition, but it was a big step for country’s image too. We created a precedent that ultimately played a positive role, and most importantly, we have achieved the goal.

I think the success of the project has come from a well-calculated plan and tireless work. When you tell yourself ‘’I can do it!’’ – That will work out.

In addition to our specialty, we should be quick, creative, thinker, quick response to situations. I think my 9-month working process and especially the last 3 months campaign has become a success not only for me but for many people. I have a great sense of responsibility when I am working on a correctly planned plan, it is a game of chess, where you know more and more about what the competitor will do and you are ready to make his move.

What three tips would you offer someone just starting out in PR?

Be creative, spread the wings! manage any situation quickly and wisely! Be friends with media!- it’s your second half.

Describe your typical work week.

The typical working week necessarily involves several projects simultaneously. Meet with partners and customers, go to regions, or at least communicate with regional media.  I am starting a week with a team meeting and distributing weekly themes. Planning, shooting, and working on the media component – are common trends during the week. Busy schedule is a common component of each week. However, it is interesting every day, and most importantly, it is not tedious and does not work on one topic or one product for a week.

One of my projects gives me the opportunity to work with young people, which is another stimulus, learning more from a new generation.

What has changed in the PR industry over the last five years?

Change and dynamism are active in our profession. The representatives of the field became more multi functional. We are planning to create content, write, get, distribute, share, meaning we do a lot of things in a short time. Social media development and the rapid growth has increased our not only activity but also the pace and made us more mobile.

Time, pace, technological changes – these are the factors that make our field’s representatives  learn to overcome new challenges, we need to focus on content and not on traditional approaches. Time is a crucial factor- especially for our job.

What skills are needed for a successful PR Manager?

Writing skill is very important, if we put it more accurately, one needs to know how to create content. Strategic planning is  a must-have for PR Specialist.

What are some of the growing trends in the public relations industry?

Last year we worked in the direction of publicity.ge in terms of video releases and new directions of virtual reality. At that time we had to contact public relations specialists and media representatives. The survey revealed what are the expectations of the media, what they are asking for and what actually works in the field of communications. Keys that were successful 3 years ago, might not affect society nowadays. Demands are made by public, which forces us to use those approaches. These trends are:

  • Complete transformation into new media, ie, traditional press releases should stay in th  past – that has already been revealed in recent years;
  • Real-time Marketing – “We sell” stories in the moment and in that period when the news is hot;
  • Visualization. Visual perception probably is one of the main challenges, which has caused by a shaky pace and even competition. This can be video or picture that sells brand/product;
  • Content Marketing;
  • Influence Marketing- especially through micro influences;
  • The involvement of opinion leaders is still actual;
  • Acquired social media and traditional social media integration.
  • Digital storytelling and mobile reporting;
  • Measurement of engagement, and this refers to the measurement of data that allows us to determine the dose, character, attitude.

What your predictions about PR industry, what challenges will it face in 5-10 years?

Recently with the initiative of our organization Mr. Denis Wilcox, one of the well-known experts of the sphere, held a meeting of the representatives of communications. One of the topics that we have addressed is the challenges that will be more clear in a few years. It will be a few years since the digital industry and digital media will completely transform and replace traditional media. In fact, the field goes on to reduce the cost of human resources.Specialist needs to  become a multi-functional in this field to be successful.