Last week Josep M. Iglesias talked about current trends and explained why creativity is an important part of Spanish PR – today he will give us an insight into general local differences of Spanish PR practices.
*This series is based on phone or face-to-face interviews and written input, therefore please excuse language mistakes which might reflect foreign language influences.
1. Are there any PR practices in which you think your region differs from PR in other parts of the world?
Josep M. Iglesias: Spain has traditionally been less permeable to global trends for historical and language-related reasons. Now that has changed, but the Spanish press still needs to find a local angle for news stories. With regard to social networks, there is the peculiarity that among young people, Tuenti, a local Spanish platform (created by an American who lives here) is a strong competitor for Facebook.
2. Can you describe common mistakes foreign companies make?
Josep M. Iglesias: I fully agree with what my colleague, Vilma Bosticco, said in her interview. In northern Europe, the English-speaking world has a strong influenced on the way things are done that doesn’t work the same in the south of Europe.
Any company operating in Spain must be absolutely flexible: trying to get a list of confirmations for a press conference a week beforehand simply isn’t going to happen. In fact, we can get confirmations for a press trip the day before the plane is due to leave. We PR professional would prefer to work in a more orderly and planned fashion, and we are the first to want to apply this and to feel good about it. But we have to be capable of adapting and knowing how to react.
3. What do clients from other markets need to keep in mind when they plan to do PR in your region?
Josep M. Iglesias: The main thing really is to know the local market. The only way to do that is by drawing on sector professionals in the country or people who live here. In fact, this is one of the main values of GlobalCom. We design global strategies applied locally, and adapted to each market by local PR experts.
Next week our PR series will visit Finland. PR expert Jukka Laikar will share with us why Finish jornalists prefer not to leave their office desks to often and what advantages companies can gain by distributing press releases in the local languages even if most Finish journalists speak English very well.
Josep M. Iglesias is a Managing Partner of the Barcelona-based agency IT COMUNICACION – GlobalCom PR Network Partner Spain. Josep started his career in PR after obtaining degrees in law and journalism. Over the last fifteen years he has worked for agencies with a variety of clients from different industries, including tourism, lifestyle, design, IT, and healthcare.