Article by Pete McConnell – Executive Chair and Founder Commtract 

In our first year, Commtract has completed or has underway more than 200 communications projects. These range from advising CEOs of ASX10 companies to helping launch small start-ups.

Working with such a wide array of companies across a diverse range of skills has provided us with a unique insight into the communications industry. Here are five trends we believe will shape 2018:

Corporates need to Campaign. Across the globe big business is increasing caught in the crossfire of the political and cultural wars. Smart organisations are responding by ensuring they have access to contemporary, agile campaign skills to complement their communications team.

Writing to Entertain: Traditional media may be in decline but the thirst for content is growing. Organisations are relying more and more on direct communications and content marketing to reach their customers. They are using former journalists to develop this content. These folks write clearly and have spent a career engaging and entertaining an audience.

Talking to the team is an art form. Too often strategies fail because the company didn’t win over the hearts and minds of the team. Internal communications continues to growing as a discreet and essential skill. In 2018, it will be every bit the equal of more traditional disciplines such as external affairs and government relations.

Sell with Vision: Spend five minutes on social media and you understand the importance of video in selling a message. However, asking a team member to film a piece to camera on their iPhone looks like exactly that. It takes a videographer to make authentic, simple and clear video content, and this format is remarkably cost effective.

Specialise, specialise, specialise. By its nature, communications work is lumpy. Good teams are increasingly calling on short term, highly technical skills for specific projects. For example, good copy writers are now specialising in sectors, good government relations professionals are specialising in sectors and geographies.