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Mediaverse were pleased to participate in the Corporate Affairs Summit for 2015. It’s always refreshing to get some insight into what’s preoccupying some of the best minds in Australia’s corporate affairs world.

Our CEO Karen Crawford returned with some of these valuable insights and key takeaways from the summit:

  • Digital/Social media has become an important tool for corporate affairs. Social media is a key communications platform for corporate affairs and is no longer the domain of marketing. Telstra’s Jason Laird noted that executive teams in some of Australia’s biggest corporations have become more interested in social media because it’s seen as playing a key role in influencing reputation. As a result, the need to prove the benefits and value of social media through measurement is even more important now. NBN’s Karina Keisler emphasised the need for ‘solid metrics’ to measure social media just as you do for traditional media.
  • The importance of storytelling: Jason Laird described Telstra’s approach as, ‘Great stories told well and often’ and GE’s Emma Rugge-Price reminded everyone that the core of any communications function is great storytelling. Authenticity is also now seen as playing a big role in effective storytelling. Content that centres on first-hand experiences have the most impact. Cricket Australia’s Jonathan Rose used the #PutOutYourBats movement on Twitter for cricketer Phillip Hughes as an example of an authentic and powerful campaign that was not artificially generated by a corporate affairs team or an agency.
  • Employee engagement: How employees feel about an organisation is just as important about how consumers/customers/clients feel about an organisation. Similar to any storytelling aimed at external stakeholders, storytelling for internal communication needs to be authentic. Emphasising the importance of employee engagement, Oona Nielssen from CSIRO said, ‘Internal communication IS external communication’. Employees at every level of an organisation are ambassadors for your company to external stakeholders. Simone Niven from Rio Tinto emphasised the importance of your own workforce in engaging the community and, enhancing and protecting organisational reputation.