Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Gayheart Mensah
Gayheart Mensah, External Affairs Director at Vodafone Ghana, has subtly criticised business organisations for their ineffective deployment of Public Relations (PR) concepts and interventions.

Unless organisations in Ghana evolve in a way that promotes sustainability, the very survival of businesses would be difficult to guarantee, according to Mr Mensah.

Speaking at the CIMG Annual Marketing Conference in Accra recently, Gayheart Mensah said though PR department had become the pillar in engaging external audiences about a company’s efforts, there still remains a certain pervasive lack of understanding of the concept in corporate organisations.

“When I hear marketing agencies present marketing plans and add a line that they will also do some PR, my exasperation about the misconception worsens. Let me say with all the force I can command that what we marketers and marketing agencies do as part of an integrated marketing communications is not public relations. It is, at best, publicity, which is a tool for both marketing and PR,” he stated.

Mr Mensah added that PR has a very broad spectrum that includes stakeholder management, advocacy, reputation management, investor relations and crisis management.

“Marketers need to embrace the bigger picture and understand that PR is an overarching practice that encompasses every facet of the corporate life,” he said.

Mr Mensah, speaking on theme, ‘The Future of Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) – Evolve or Die,’ said, “I beg to differ on the differences people aspire to CSR and Sustainability. If the objective of any corporate organisation for undertaking CSR activities is not business sustainability, then those CSR activities ought to be interrogated.”

The Vodafone Director added that at no point should government consider legislating the CSR space, since it is an activity that should be voluntary.

“Invariably, a CSR law will reduce the concept to a mere self-administered tax on business, where government will prescribe for the organisations, where to channel that tax. All those win-win projects, where companies support areas that are natural fit for what they do to make money will be actively discouraged under a CSR law.”

The CIMG conference is organised annually to bring together marketing professionals and academicians across the country to deliberate on modern trends of the discipline, as well as adopt ways of strengthening the discipline in the corporate world.


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I am a Creative Arts Writer who is also into Strategic Communications, Public Relations, Photography and IT consultancy. I am also Social media enthusiast and an alumni of the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ).


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