Spotlight on the Shelter PR Team
As sponsors of the In House Team of The Year award at this year’s PR Week Awards, Career Moves is bringing you the inside scoop on the nominees.
We have been releasing interviews with the nominated teams in the category, and ahead of tomorrow’s awards we bring you our final interview. Today’s spotlight is on the Shelter In House Team.
Shelter has been around since 1966, when the Reverend Bruce Kenrick started Shelter in response to the massive housing crisis and inner-city slums of the 1960s. He and co-founder Des Wilson were outraged at the shocking conditions many families had to call home, and joined forces to create Shelter. Their vision was to create a national body that would speak out for the hidden homeless, and unite the work of different housing charities.
We spoke to Anna Wilson, Head of Media at Shelter to get an insight into their team and the PRWeek Awards.
What do you think makes an effective and successful in-house PR team?
I think it’s easy for in-house teams to be pulled in lots of different directions, so it’s vital there is a clear sense of priority for the organisation for the media team to be guided by and know where to direct their efforts. I think in-house teams can also get completely subsumed by their subject matter, which can be a huge positive but also makes it really important to regularly take a step back to look at what other organisations are doing and to view your own comms from the perspective of the man on the street rather than the subject expert.
What are the Shelter team’s most notable or major achievements in the last year?
Shaping the Evening Standard’s 2013 housing campaign via a series of background briefings with senior editors and comment writers, resulting in multiple pieces of branded, on-message coverage and culminating in a Shelter front page at the end of the campaign.
A rapid reactive media campaign on legal aid, designed to position Shelter as a credible voice against cuts to legal aid following an unexpected government decision. Rapidly developing our relationships with legal editors, we secured a front-page Times piece, alongside a full page comment piece from our chief executive in The Times legal pages.
A celebrity-led media campaign designed to promote Shelter charity shops, launching an eBay shop of big-ticket items donated by celebrity fans of Shelter, with coverage including Heat magazine.
Excluding the other nominees, which in-house PR teams stand out to you and why?
I’m a bit biased as I used to work there but I think Cancer Research UK has a really excellent in-house team, they maintain an extremely high standard across the board in their media work from hard hitting news stories to creative consumer campaigns.
With the other categories and nominees in the PR Week Awards in mind, are there any particular campaigns/teams or people that you are rooting for and why?
We recently worked on a project with Blue Rubicon so will be wishing them luck.
Is there anything fun & interesting about your in-house PR team that you want to share?
One of our team used to manage Bananarama.
The PRWeek Awards take place tomorrow night (Tuesday 14th October). Be sure to keep an eye on the Career Moves team tweeting live from the event.