PR essentials for global campaigns

Scale is not the only issue. Culture and media access can vary widely. Anticipate a world of difference.

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As an Englishman plying his trade in the United States (a vastly less glamorous version of Steven Gerrard or Frank Lampard), I’ve come to recognize George Bernard Shaw’s wisdom daily, if not hourly: “We are two nations divided by a common language.”

Every day my colleagues in Boston are both amused and bemused by what would be commonly used idioms back home in Blighty. (Cue hysteria and a riot of “Mary Poppins” chimneysweep-esque mimicry.) Fortunately, with our sophisticated and highly evolved self-depreciating sense of humor, we Brits have developed thick skins, not to mention stiff upper lips.

As the Northern Irish poet Louis MacNeice wrote, the world is incorrigibly plural. In PR, that extends beyond simple language barriers. Running a global campaign is fraught with complexity, cost and cultural confusion. Increasingly, most of our clients (from plucky startups to major global corporations) operate across borders and often in many corners of the world.

Here are some key lessons that we at Shift Communications have gleaned from working with our clients on global campaigns:

Be methodical about spending.

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