Why Rwandan artists need to embrace Public Relations

By Magnifique Migisha
On 6 March 2023 at 06:24

Views expressed in this opinion piece are of the writer. Magnifique Migisha is a digital strategist based in Kigali.

One good morning, I listened to an interesting conversation on the Kigali-based Royal FM radio station where the presenters discussed how those in the entertainment industry should embrace Public Relations (PR).

This conversation was insightful as the presenters shared some examples of how artists should be scandal free when they fully embrace PR.

The Government of Rwanda is keen to promote local digital content because it will fuel demand for broadband, improve the return on investment made into hard and soft infrastructure, and result in increased off-farm employment and entrepreneurship opportunities.

That will also bridge the rural and gender digital divide, and help Rwanda transform from consumer and importer to producer and exporter of digital. Public relations (PR) can easily help those in the entertainment industry spread their work to relevant audiences through various channels.

Public relations (PR) refers to the management of communication between an organisation and its stakeholders. It involves establishing and maintaining positive relationships with stakeholders, such as customers, investors, employees, and media, to help achieve business goals.

In the case of Rwandan artists, PR can involve promoting their work, managing their image and reputation, and building relationships with potential fans, customers, and partners.

Public Relations strategies for Rwandan artists could include media outreach, event management, content creation, and social media management. The PR would aim to increase their work’s visibility and recognition, build their brand, and ultimately drive sales and opportunities.

PR for Rwandan artists involves creating and maintaining a positive image and reputation for the artists and their work through effective communication with stakeholders such as fans, media, and potential customers.

Those in entertainment who have embraced PR have seen an increase in their visibility, recognition, and reputation in the industry and have built strong relationships with fans, media, and other stakeholders.

We can easily see some artists who actively engage their fans through their personal digital media networks through video chats so that they can directly connect, this is so helpful to the artists because when they release their work, their fans contribute in sharing the artists’ work which in the long-run support those in the entertainment to monetize their PR efforts.

PR strategies for Rwandan artists may include media outreach and pitching, event management and promotion, content creation and distribution, and social media management. Other tactics may include securing media coverage, managing the artists’ reputation and image, and creating opportunities for the artists to connect with fans and other key stakeholders.

It is important for Rwandan artists to have a well-crafted PR strategy in place in order to effectively promote their work, build their brand, and reach their target audience. A strong PR effort can help artists achieve their goals and reach their full potential in their growing careers.

Public Relations can help those in the showbiz sector to secure media coverage, interviews, speaking engagements, hosting events, and even formulating responses to negative news or challenges.

PR isn’t about buying advertising space or paying for journalists to cover a particular topic, it’s about building positive, trusting relationships, finding the best narratives to frame something, and then sharing those narratives and encouraging others to do the same.

PR efforts look different for different artists and arts organisations, depending on their goals, budget, and whom they are trying to reach. Often, artists or arts organisations hire a PR agency or PR professionals to help them get the word out.

Sometimes, artists think that promoting themselves or hiring someone else to help promote them is cheating or selling out. In reality, a lot of arts coverage or art opportunities are the result of artists and arts organisations proactively getting their name out there, often with the help of PR professionals.

Embracing PR can help those in the creative industry get coverage in a news outlet which helps them gain more visibility in the public like getting more attendees to their shows.

Media coverage can help them as well as make more sales and increase their visibility for other opportunities like acting as brand ambassadors of diverse products.

Rwandan Pop artist Christopher pulling off an electric performance : Courtesy photo