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The new normal: video conferencing etiquette and practical tips

Dr.sc.comm. Olga Kazaka
partner at communication agency A.W.Olsen & Partners, lecturer at University of Latvia, author of the book ‘Первая книга о PR’/’Pirmā PR grāmata’
The general quarantine and the transfer to remote working mode has given new insights to the virtual meetings and has imposed an interesting question: is videoconferencing the same as face-to-face meetings or something else? What rules of conduct apply here? How does it differ from face-to-face conversation? Here are some tips to help make videoconferencing more effective. 1. Prepare well First and foremost, prepare technically. A good microphone and headphones, as well as a good lighting shining on your face from a window or lamp (do not sit with your back to the lit window) have become the basic hygiene elements. The camera should be positioned at eye level. Fully charge the computer and leave it connected to the charger during the meeting. Close all unnecessary windows and programs. Make sure that the background is quiet, so that children or pets do not interfere in the conversation at any important moment. Try out the technique and program beforehand, but do not forget to turn off the microphone when you are not talking. Many questions arise about the choice of background and clothing. Recent research shows that interlocutors pay most attention to background, less attention to clothing style and color; however, these are still important aspects. All these elements are especially important when communicating virtually with men or younger generation. So, when it comes to clothing, the neutral color scheme and business style will help you to look authentic, trustworthy, as ...

3 Things Organisations’ Leaders Need to Think About Right Now

Dr.sc.comm. Olga Kazaka
partner at communication agency A.W.Olsen & Partners, lecturer at University of Latvia, author of the book ‘Первая книга о PR’/’Pirmā PR grāmata’
The classic way of dealing with any unpleasant but inevitable changes goes through five stages: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. People do not necessarily go through the stages in the same order. However, sooner or later it is important for all of us to come to the stage of adoption, which bears the understanding that in the nearest time life will be different, and now it is necessary to appropriately evaluate the perspectives and transform. Here are three aspects that it is important to think about right now for any organization leader, entrepreneur, communicator, in order to get out of an unexpected crisis with minimal losses. 1. The emotional soap opera and the time of opinion leaders The theme of a new mysterious virus that attacks many people affects our self-preservation instincts, and therefore attracts great attention of the audience. No matter how cynical it may sound, but Covid-19 is a new soap opera, the plot of which people are watching with interest through news resources and social networks. Actual events confirm a long-known fact: emotions attract attention and convince more effectively than facts. So who will people now believe and to whom will they listen? To those who can find a balance between facts and emotions in order to convey their thoughts as efficiently as possible. As an excellent example of such a balance I want to mention the emergency message of Angela Merkel. A new challenge awaits ...

A.W.Olsen & Partners Agency is a Finalist in Two Categories at European Excellence Awards 2019

Latvian PR agency A.W. Olsen & Partners has become the finalist of the biggest European communication competition European Excellence Awards 2019 in two categories: “Government Agencies & Parties” and “Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia”. A competent jury highly appreciated the A.W.Olsen & Partners agency’s project Three Steps to Safe Roads in Latvia, developed and implemented by the order of the Motor Insurers' Bureau of Latvia (LTAB), as well as the YouTubers Against Fraud campaign, which was implemented in the framework of the #Atkrāpies!/#FraudOff! movement in cooperation with the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Latvia. It should be noted that both projects have already been professionally honoured at international level. The #Atkrāpies!/#FraudOff! movement has received the most prestigious international awards: The highest award in the field of public relations at the IPRA Golden World Awards (GWA) 2018 in the agencies’ category of Public Sector Collaboration; The international award at the European Excellence Awards, winning the category of Change Communications; The first place at Eventiada IPRA GWA 2018 in the category of Social Projects. In its turn, the Three Steps to Road Safety in Latvia campaign has also received a gold award at the world’s largest public relations competition, IPRA Golden World Awards 2019, in the category of Traditional and New Media Integration. Video descriptions of the two campaigns can be found at: https://ej.uz/FraudOff_2018_case https://ej.uz/3StepsToSafeRoads About European Excellence Award Europe's most prestigious European Excellence Award has been presented for outstanding achievements in ...

Influencer marketing is growing by leaps and bounds, but not in the segments we expected

Marija Vorkule
A. W. Olsen & Partners project manager
Are influencers a cliché outgoing trend of 2019? What does it mean to 100% use content produced by influencers, and what kind of effective output can it give? Should you believe in intuition or numbers? How carefully should you create a lookalike audience? Targeting experts, producers, and, of course, opinion leaders discussed these and other issues at the InstaDay Instagram Conference held in the Skolkovo Technology Park. The following is an extract from the speeches and discussions of professionals in digital marketing. Influencer marketing is not just growing, but growing at an accelerating pace. Obviously, influencer mania will stay for at least another year, since the volumes of advertising purchased from opinion leaders only increase from year to year - an average by one and a half to two times a year. For example, according to Getblogger.ru, the largest Russian blogging platform, the influencer marketing segment has grown byabout 6 times over the past 2 years. In 2019 in Latvia, influencer marketing was undertaken by enterprises with quite difficult Instagram specifics - banks, manufacturers of products for the B2B sector, medical centres and many others. Undoubtedly, in our country this type of advertising is only gaining momentum, despite the fact that many are sick and tired of the word “influencer”. Nevertheless, influencers came to stay, although in the near future slightly other personalities will appear on the scene. Mommy blogs are no longer in trend, as well as interior design.There was a ...

Research: More than half of Latvian influencers are scammers

Marija Vorkule
A. W. Olsen & Partners project manager
According to projections, the capital turnover in the field of influencer marketing in 2020 will be from 5 to 10 billion dollars. It is obvious that with this potential for profit, many people have a desire to develop their profiles faster than fair methods allow. What is the amount of fraud in Latvia in particular and in the Baltic States in general? A research by A.W. Olsen & Partners, a communications agency, and HypeAuditor, a service for Instagram and YouTube analytics, reveals that 53% of influencers in the Baltics demonstrate signs of fraud. In Latvia, the results are the same. How do things stand in Latvia?In Latvia, the smallest number of scammers (44%) is observed in the category of nano-influencers, that is, those users of the Instagram social network whose number of followers does not exceed 5,000. The largest number of scammers is among those with 5,000 to 20,000 subscribers, namely 61%. “This may be due to a certain kind of “glass ceiling”: if you are not a media person, it becomes quite difficult to overcome the mark of 20,000 people and start making good money, so various fraud mechanics begin to be applied, for example, buying bots, reactions, participation in groups, where users actively comment on each other's posts, as well as the method of mass following, i.e. subscription-unsubscribes”, Maria Vorkule, project manager at A.W. Olsen & Partners in the Baltic States and lecturer at the University of Latvia, ...

10 global trends in the field of communications

Dr. sc. comm. Olga Kazaka
Partner at A. W. Olsen & Partners, Assistant Professor, University of Latvia
The topmost event of the year in the field of public relations is the presentation of the most significant international public relations award, the IPRA Golden World Awards. The winners of this prize are recognized as the most advanced communicators. This year, hundreds of communication campaigns from 64 countries throughout the world were submitted to the competition. Interestingly, only 44% of the winners came from Europe, including the campaign by Latvian communication agency “A. W. Olsen & Partners”. Here are the most noticeable current trends in the field of communications that permeated this year's campaigns. 1. Fight for Trust A number of campaigns focused on trust. In many countries, people lose confidence in government, local authorities, organizations and the media. In addition, more and more organizations are being forced to integrate the fight against misinformation into their communication strategy. 2. Opinion Leaders Not only the organizations but also opinion leaders play an increasingly important role in the struggle for trust, helping from outside to convey messages to specific groups by sharing some of their authority with the organization. And they may not always be the influencers in social networks: there may be campaigns in which a doctor, clergyman or musician will be the ideal opinion leader. 3. Expanding the Boundaries of Public Relations  Nowadays, public relations can affect not only the reputation of organizations but also their financial performance. In addition, organizations are increasingly seeking to change their habits and views ...

Latvian traffic safety campaign has won the most prestigious PR award in the world

The campaign “Mobilais Saskaņotais Paziņojums” (“Three steps to safe roads”) implemented by the Motor Insurers' Bureau of Latvia (hereinafter - LTAB) in 2018 received a gold award at the world's largest public relations competition IPRA Golden World Awards 2019, in the category of Traditional and New Media Integration. An international competition jury of 23 countries highly praised the uniqueness of the LTAB campaign and its ability to use new technologies to improve drivers' daily lives. “This year's LTAB campaign competed with hundreds of other communication campaigns from 64 countries throughout the world. It’s a pleasure to see that industry professionals and the jury highly appreciated the accomplishments of our organization alongside world-renowned corporations like Google, Adidas, Coca Cola, Aramco, Ford, Lukoil and more. This proves that in Latvia we are able to create products and services that are highly valued elsewhere in the world,” Jānis Abāšins, Chairman of the Board of LTAB, says. “While the world's leading scientists publish their research in international peer-reviewed journals, the highest quality evaluation of communication professionals is the international IPRA Golden World Awards. This is the second year that our agency has been awarded the highest prize in the prestigious competition that only enhances the motivation to seek new efficient and creative solutions to communication challenges,” Olga Kazaka says, who is a partner in A.W.Olsen & Partners Communications Agency which designed and implemented the “Mobilais Saskaņotais Paziņojums” campaign. Campaign video description: https://ej.uz/3StepsToSafeRoads About the Golden World Awards ...