Comment / Archive 2015


Podcast: 2015 Review With Stephen Waddington And Vikki Chowney
Ketchum's Stephen Waddington and H+K Strategies' Vikki Chowney join the Echo Chamber podcast to review some of the year's key PR themes.

Holmes Report
20 December 2015


Corporate reputation is a pressure point in the fight for digital human rights
According to public relations experts such as Stephen Waddington, Chief Engagement Officer at Ketchum, corporate reputation on human rights issues is important for tech giants.

Open Democracy
22 November 2015

Omnicom moves Zócalo from Ketchum to Critical Mass
Zócalo Group CEO Paul Rand quietly relinquished his role as Ketchum's chief digital officer and Stephen Waddington took on global engagement officer duties.

Holmes Report
17 November 2015

What I read and how I learn Stephen Waddington 
[is one of the] most well-known [people] in the PR industry in the UK, always at the forefront of what's going on, what the issues are, how to fix them and always coming up with awesome projects tapping into his community (e.g. #PRstack).

Iliyana Stareva
16 November 2015

PR bloggers
Chief Engagement Officer at Ketchum, Visiting Professor in Practice at Newcastle University and CIPR past President, Stephen knows every corner of the world of PR. His blog covers everything from social media to PR resources. His posts often invite discussion and are all well worth a read for anyone working in or studying public relations.

Arianne Williams
6 November 2015

Highlights of Thinking Digital Manchester
Stephen pretty much said most of the things me and Marie talked about in our workshop the day before on increasing your personal impact. There were things which we had to cut short including lots about the Cluetrain Manifesto.

Ian Forrester
16 November 2015

Business Jargon to avoid
I read this wonderful post by Stephen Waddington, just a couple of days ago, and totally loved it. It was nice to reach out and touch some blue sky thinking.

Simon May
13 November 2015

Our words have a stock imagery problem Stephen Waddington 
recently published a fun blog post about business jargon. He asked people which bits of business jargon they loved to hate and organised the responses into a structured list.

Evolving Influence
13 November 2015

Stephen Waddington on business jargon
Former president of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations Stephen Waddington has blogged a list of the worst examples of business gobbledegook.

Rob Skinner
12 November 2015

Eight areas of social & digital planning for 2016
As organizations around the world lay the groundwork for their 2016 plans, here are eight areas of focus in social and digital that I believe will be critical for the year ahead.

4 November, 2016

Thinking about Thinking Digital #TDCMCR
Stephen Waddington Head of Engagement for an organisation gave a whirlwind tour through some of the worst and best of organisational online presence.

Dr Bex Lewis
4 November, 2015

A bold step towards #FuturePRoofing PR
The community’s first order of business: launch a guide, exploring modern approaches to PR, for agency and in-house communications managers. 35 collaborator, 3 months, 1 book. Watch this conversation between influencer and project ambassador, Stephen Waddington, and project curator and editor, Sarah Hall for a little more background.

3 November, 2015

North East PR consultant Sarah Hall launches #FuturePRoof to map future of her industry
Billed as a conversation around the future of PR, the book brings together contributors from across the industry. Stephen Waddington added: “#FuturePRoof is an ambitious project. Its purpose is to explore the opportunity for public relations right now and in the next ten years.

The Journal (Newcastle)
3 November, 2015

#FuturePRoof: “The biggest ever conversation about the future of PR” launches
Edited and curated by public relations consultant and agency owner Sarah Hall, with a foreword from Ketchum’s chief engagement officer Stephen Waddington, the 33-chapter book covers a wide range of topics affecting the managers of communications teams and agencies.

Neville Hobson
2 November, 2015

Download #FuturePRoof book: The biggest conversation around the future of PR
It’s no easy feat crowd-sourcing a 200+ page book so a special acknowledgment goes to PR consultant and agency owner Sarah Hall who edited and curated the project. Also don’t miss the foreword by Ketchum’s Chief Engagement Officer, Stephen Waddington, who hints at a possible #FuturePRoof working community in the future.

Michael White
2 November, 2015

New book promotes PR role in driving business success #FuturePRoof is an ambitious project. Its purpose is to explore the opportunity for public relations right now and in the next ten years” – explains Stephen Waddington Ketchum’s chief engagement officer who provided the book’s foreword.

Scott Gutherie
2 November, 2015

#FuturePRoof Edited and curated by public relations consultant and agency owner Sarah Hall, with a foreword from Ketchum’s chief engagement officer Stephen Waddington, the 33 chapter book covers a wide range of topics affecting the managers of communications teams and agencies.

Ross Wigham
2 November, 2015

Is it time to step away from the Grunig & Hunt four models of public relations?
But educators, students and even seasoned PR practitioners such as Stephen Waddington (who wrote his CIPR Chartered Practitioner paper on Grunig and digital communications) hone in on the 30+ year old framework.

14 October 2015

Global PR chief Stephen Waddington does it all from a Northumberland farmhouse (and a houseboat)
“I probably should be based in New York but I seem to make it work from Northumberland,” says Stephen Waddington, with a grin. [...] His thirst for creating is insatiable. Not content with the international day job, the CIPR responsibilities and a visiting professorship at Newcastle University - Stephen also manages to find time tinker with crowdsourced resources for the PR world."

The Journal (Newcastle)
4 October 2015


Why publicity is public relations (and it’s all inherently amoral)
Nevertheless, as Stephen Waddington also points out, it usefully rehearses the big challenges facing public relations as a consequence of media fragmentation and important changes to the way we defer and trust (of which, as a former Edelman consumer CEO, Phillips is well versed).

Chalkstream Communications
21 September 2015

Why China leads the world in digital media
China’s digital market is a story of scale, innovation and raw energy. It’s a story of an internet supergiant. But it’s also a story of two halves: 50% of the 1.35 billion population benefit from e-commerce, social media and messaging, while the rest have yet to go online.

World Economic Forum
8 September 2015


Stephen Waddington: the resurgence of PR in the shift to social business
At the top end you have organisations with a purpose that creates something like a religion that has followers who have absolute belief in that core purpose. At the other end you have functional organisations that sell stuff, and there’s various stages to be reached in between: so it’s not Yin and Yang, but more of a continuum.

30 August 2015

PR blogs UK top 10
Stephen Waddington: Stephen’s not letting go of the #2 spot either…and why should he when he’s got a lot to say! Stephen is partner and chief engagement officer for Ketchum, former president of CIPR, and author of#BrandVandals and Brand Anarchy. His blog brings to you all the latest in public relations, the media and social media. Stephen’s blog first started in September 2012.

26 August, 2015

What is influence, and how do we measure it?
Klout took a good run at the problem, but not everybody agrees that it’s a useful measure of influence. In a recent blog post by Ketchum’s Chief Engagement Officer, Stephen Waddington (Influence is more than a numbers game) several leading lights of the UK’s digital PR industry shared their largely unimpressed viewpoints on Klout. In the ensuing Twitter chatter, Stephen asked Sysomos to share our thoughts on the topic of online influence.

21 August, 2015

What will it take to make Amazon a great place to work?
For Waddington, who has watched many brands evolve under pressure, it is time for Amazon to grow up. “The organization can only drive innovation so far as a purpose,” he says. “[Amazon] will eventually have to come up with a higher purpose based on the communities it serves”.

The Guardian
19 August 2015

Another top 50 list of the UK's marketing and advertising influencers
Social listening company Lissted have published an alternative list to Klout's rankings, and it's very different.

Brand Republic
10 August 2015

Klout: influence is more than a numbers game
Real life influence is far more complex than a simple metric, as the debate around a list of advertising and marketing professionals has spotlighted.

Brand Republic
10 August 2015

Klout: is this thing on?
Do you check your Klout score before getting out of bed each morning? No? Me either. So I was intrigued when Stephen Waddington, Partner and global engagement officer at Ketchum sent me a Direct Message Tweet asking for my comments on the use of Klout as a metric tool for social web influence.

Scott Guthrie
8 August 2015

Top 10 UK marketing and advertising Klout influencers on social media
These are the most influential people on social media in the UK's marketing and advertising industry, according to Klout.

Brand Republic
3 August 2015


A whole #PRstack of good ideas
I’ve been moved to blog on the #PRstack project. Ingeniously conceived by the most excellent industry doer Stephen Waddington and supported by so many other PR progressives out there.

Jon Lonsdale
June 17, 2015

Reputation and responsibility: PR’s confident future
In a recent post the excellent Stephen Waddington claimed the PR industry lacks confidence. I agree with him. It’s also hard to get away from comments about the PR & Communications industry’s need to think and act like MBA’s and improve their knowledge of business.

Jonathan Bean
16 June 2015

PR and its’ fetish
This started life as a reply to a typically thoughtful piece by Stephen Waddington who wrote about PR’s Problem With Self-Confidence as it does battle for share of budget in a new era when the lines between media channels and who pays for that content to be both produced and appear are getting ever more blurred.

10 June 2015

How do you undermine the Islamic State brand? Islamic State is emerging as a powerful global brand despite being a criminal enterprise and purveyor of brutality. It has achieved global media attention using consumer and corporate marketing tactics. These include branded products, celebrity figures, personalised advertising and social media. It is making full use of the range of social and traditional media.

4 June 2015

Kids do not ruin your PR career: our response
“We’re all working harder than ever irrespective of our personal situation. Our business is not perfect but we’re self-critical and strive continually for change.  There’s a role in public relations for anybody that has talent irrespective of personal situation.  I look forward to PRMoment’s guide to PR in the 1930s next week.”

Sarah Pinch
6 June 2015

Why China has a five-year lead in social media & ecommerce
Travelling in China gives a fresh perspective on the European and US internet markets.

1 June 2015


Calling all PR people
Waddington argues: “Spin is dead and publicity may be dying but public relations, as a means of engagement between an organisation and its publics, is thriving”.

Automotive & Transportation
27 May 2015

Consumer behaviour myopia in ideas
Stephen Waddington even describes his behaviour on Facebook as ‘cognitive behavioural therapy’.

Renaissance Chambara
26 May 2015

Are you in-house, agency or freelance?
There’s a huge amount of variety in agency-life and no two days are ever different. You have the opportunity to be exposed to a huge variety of campaigns, media, professional practice and clients.

23 May 2015

10 Tips: the social media landscape in China
The culture, language and networks of China are vastly different than those in Europe and the U.S. And if brands want to thrive in the region, they’ll need to seamlessly integrate new forms of media as part of the customer journey.

22 May 2015

Free PR tools – PR stack e-book
Professional development doesn’t need to be expensive and to prove this point, former CIPR President Stephen Waddington (@wadds) and his team of 19 contributors have created a wonderful free e-book, My PRstack – A practical guide to modern PR tools and workflow.

PR Hub
21 May 2015

This was not the social media election you’ve been waiting for
As Stephen Waddington has already suggested, this was not the social media election you have been waiting for.

John Popham's Random Musings
10 May 2015

The anti-social media election: digital can do much more for parties
"It was claimed that whoever won the social media campaign would win the keys to Number 10, which has been put into context by Stephen Waddington this week."

Ben Lowndes
10 May 2015

Where social media won in the election (#GE2015)
"Whilst there were examples of good practice during this election, more could have been done. Local newspapers still seemed to be the primary mouthpiece of propaganda! [...] It’s a point I believe Stephen Waddington makes in his post “Social media didn’t win anything”.

Thought Symposium
9 May 2015


Ketchum EMEA: Agency Business Report 2015
"There were a couple of major people moves during the year related to the agency’s reinvention. Stephen Waddington was promoted to the newly created role of chief engagement officer, to support the agency’s integration of digital and social capabilities."

PR Week
27 April 2015

10 lessons from Mad Men on running an agency The final series of Mad Men kicks off on AMC in the US on Sunday. The box set should be required watching for anyone that works in an agency. It’s packed with insight on creativity, talent, management, and life itself. [...] Here are some of my favourite lessons from the previous six series.

3 April 2015


Meerkat and Periscope are fun apps but beware the sting in the tail
The need to embrace these apps quickly is clear. “If your audiences suddenly jump onto these new platforms, you’re going to miss out on the conversations that happen and the opportunity to drive traffic,” according to Stephen Waddington, chief engagement officer of PR agency Ketchum.

The Guardian
31 March 2015

How PR's workflow is changing
Public relations has not always been strongest at sharing. We must recognize that those actions that benefit the least well-equipped in the market will ultimately benefit us all. Competing on closed, proprietary technology and ways of working makes little sense.

PR Daily
26 March 2015

5 things you should know before getting a job in PR
"Blogging is the best way to consistently build your personal reputation in my view."

Future Rising
25 March 2015

The Sarah Hall column: #PRStack – pick and mix PR tools under one roof
“I kicked off this project because I wanted to try and make sense of the market for tools, and continue to understand how public relations practice is changing,” said founder Stephen Waddington.

24 March 2015

Former CIPR president Stephen Waddington launches app to help PR industry
Ex-CIPR president Stephen Waddington has teamed up with news distribution start-up Prezly to launch a free online toolbox for the PR industry and a guide to using it.

3 March 2015

#PRStack aims to demystify the plethora of PR technology tools
Crowdsourced directory of third-party tools looks for PR industry support.

Holmes Report
3 March 2015


Male PRs paid £8,500 more than women purely because of gender, report finds
Stephen Waddington, CIPR past president, said the findings reflected "a stark generational issue", with senior practitioners resistant to modernity.

24 February 2015

Lego beats Apple as world’s most powerful brand
#brandvandals states: “For the organisation, engagement isn’t an option – it’s a necessity. Brand vandals are forcing a level of dialogue that organisations, public and private, have never had to contemplate before.”

17 February 2015

Five Links On Friday: Cashing In On Fifty Shades Of Grey
A helpful list of things we know we shouldn’t do on social media but often still do anyway, courtesy of Stephen Waddington.

Pickle Jar Communications
13 February 2015

The Problem with ‘Trust Me, PR is Dead’
Former President of the CIPR Stephen Waddington tweeted this on Wednesday: “If something is called out as dead dying it is almost certainly changing and likely thriving but never ever dying.”

Paul Sutton
13 February 2015

PRin2015: Modernizing Public Relations Workflow
The single biggest issue challenging public relations agencies and communication teams in 2015 is overhauling skills and workflow. The majority of public relations agencies and communication teams focus on developing reputation with an audience via the proxy of traditional media.

4 February 2015

Review: Robert Phillips – Trust Me, PR Is Dead
As Ketchum’s newly promoted Chief Engagement Officer, Stephen Waddington puts it (far more eloquently than I have): “Spin is dead and publicity may be dying but public relations, as a means of engagement between an organisation and its publics, is thriving.”

Matt Silver
4 February 2015

How the Opportunity for PR is Shifting
'The IPA Bellwether report speaks to the opportunity in our business,’ says Stephen. ‘It is shifting from publicity to influencer relations, branded media, community and social business. We increasingly have a role as a management discipline in every area of an organisation.”

f1 recruitment
2 February 2015


2015 Trends in Europe: What 15 Social Media Experts Think
“Our news feeds are packed with brands trying to hijack a news event or own a moment. They don’t really care about what you think, but in 2015 they’ll have to. The brutal truth is that brands which fail to engage with their audiences on a social level will be ignored.” - Stephen Waddington

30 January 2015

2015 Trends in Europe: What 15 Social Media Experts Think
“Brands will truly become social in 2015. Consumers deluged with inappropriate content will fight back. Much of so-called content marketing is the equivalent of direct mail in the 90s and noughties – too often it’s inappropriate and spam.

27 January 2014


Where have all the UK PR bloggers gone? Paul Sutton 
posted yesterday about the “Mysterious Case of the Disappearing Comms Bloggers“. In the post Paul highlights the apparent demise of marketing and communications bloggers in the UK. I thought I’d investigate PR related blogs in particular. To do this I analysed the tweets from over 500 of the most influential members of the UK PR community over the last 60 days (c. 140,000 tweets all told).

Show me the numbers
26 January 2015


Ketchum promotes Stephen Waddington to chief engagement officer
Stephen Waddington has been promoted to the newly created role of chief engagement officer at Ketchum, in a bid to drive integration of digital and social capabilities.

PR Week
20 January 2015

Stephen Waddington Takes On New Global Chief Engagement Role At Ketchum
Promotion will see Waddington drive integration and innovation of digital and social throughout the agency's network.

Holmes Report
20 January 2015

Stephen Waddington takes global role
Ketchum has promoted European digital director Stephen Waddington to the newly created global role of chief engagement officer.

20 January 2015

The Future of Branded Content Marketing: What Will Change – Part 2
Others, including CIPR’s (former) president and Ketchum‘s head of digital and social Stephen Waddington, believe that broader “content development” will move beyond marketing communications to “become the communication norm for all operational areas of an organisation”.

Best of Branded Content Marketing
9 January 2015

Achieving Peak Awesomeness in PR
Get up early. (Ketchum colleague, Stephen Waddington, @wadds) Sorry, but successful PR people don’t lie around. Extra effort requires extra time, and that’s generally more available at the beginning of the day than at the end, so if you want to find a half hour for exercise, meditation or planning out your day, don’t hit the snooze button.

9 January 2015

Internal communications predictions for 2015
Stephen Waddington, European Digital and Social Media Director, Ketchum Public Relations Brands will truly become social in 2015. Consumers deluged with inappropriate content will fight back. Much of so-called content marketing is the equivalent of direct mail in the 90s and noughties – too often it’s inappropriate and spam.

Simply Communicate
9 January 2015