What to do if you’re asked to eat an elephant? Keep Calm and Call the PR experts

by Scott Douglas

Thursday, February 19th, 2015

Master the biggest challenges one bite at a time, with effective public relations

Edinburgh PR agency in Scotland explains how PR helps make this more manageableHOW do you eat an elephant? You take it one bite at a time.

As old sayings go this one really helps paints a vivid picture of huge tasks that seem overwhelming.

Let’s be clear – at our Edinburgh public relations agency we love everything about elephants and believe greater efforts should be made to protect the dwindling numbers of these majestic beasts.

Now that we’ve established that our outsized meal is purely fictional, it’s worth exploring what it has to do with public relations. When the pithy phrase was coined by a US general, it was to explain that even the biggest challenges can be broken down into manageable chunks.

How can PR help your business make big things more manageable?

At Holyrood PR in Edinburgh we approach PR campaigns for our clients by making sure that every small step is clear, easy to understand and builds toward an objective, shared by everyone involved.

There are countless examples we’ve been involved in, such as helping Scottish Water tell the story of its £1.5 billion investment programme. Or helping Scotland’s care watchdog to explain a completely new grading scheme to 15,000 care services. Or getting news about a new Scotland-based kids golfing tournament into 100+ countries.

Particularly topical at the moment is Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink, a year-long celebration of the nation’s produce. It is MASSIVE. Big enough to have its own website, mission statement and the goal of growing the value of the industry to £16.5 billion by 2017.

PR in edinburgh campaign for Sodexo prestige venues and eventsLike those other projects mentioned, it is so big it can be difficult to get a handle on. For that reason our team of PR experts are working with hospitality specialist Sodexo Prestige Venues and Events, to help it use this golden opportunity to showcase its work.

The insider PR tips and tricks to manage your jumbo project

We can’t give away the inside secrets of what we’ll be doing on behalf of Sodexo – but there are a variety techniques and tricks-of-the trade we use to break down any big PR challenge into bite-sized opportunities for our clients  and we’re happy to share a few that may be of use to your business:

1 – Why Smart PR planning is so essential

A long-running project like the Year of Food and Drink will involved countless businesses. So, the real challenge is to be among the small number who successfully cut through and enjoy positive media exposure as a result.

Being able to plan ahead is the most effective way to help businesses break big, daunting projects into more manageable sections, making them relevant according to date, geography, skill set or many other possibilities.

Edinburgh PR agency successful PR for catering giants

For instance, while the Year of Food and Drink is a huge concept to get your head round, the launch of a new recipe in March for a venue in Perthshire or a focus on Scottish salmon is much easier to get to grips with.

Suddenly you have themes to concentrate on – whether an interview with a chef behind the inspiration for a new menu design for the local Perth paper, or the announcement of a new contract with an ethical salmon producer to appear in trade titles.

The further ahead it is possible to plan, the easier it is to get people involved, to get them on side – and crucially to get their approval of stories and pictures in plenty of time.

Finally, with a clear content calendar to work to an expert PR agency can help you to map out exactly which media title you could or should be targeting – allowing PR agency and PR client to set achievable goals and manage expectations.

2 – The real secret to successful public relations is story spotting.

Luckily for Sodexo and our other clients story spotting is what the expert public relations team at Holyrood PR in Edinburgh is best known for.

We work every story as hard as possible to find the quirkiest angle, the most relevant story hook and the most eye catching and memorable quotes. That involves carrying out more detailed interviews, more thorough research and simply asking more questions.

We also focus on giving every story a human face – much more difficult than it sounds – then we make sure it is all rolled together into a punchy package to catch the eye of journalists, bloggers and media influencers.

What this means for businesses like yours is that everything becomes much easier for your team to manage. It’s easy for them to focus on specific stories about the stuff they work on every day rather than big, over-arching concepts.

Essential behind the scenes guide to the work of a public relations agencyIf you want more details on our story spotting skills then check out our essential guide for businesses – which shares some real examples for businesses you’ll recognise.


3 -The power of public relations photography and PR video

Edinburgh PR agency Holyrood PR offers public relations services including PR photographyAnother way to break down massive jobs into smaller more realistic projects is to build in a visual element.

Planning a photo shoot or video project is a process that focuses on the manageable project at hand, helping to keep everyone focused on the current bite being taken out of the elephant-sized project.

In fact, this is just one of hte reasons why our Edinburgh PR agency has  in-house photography and video among our expert PR services. Why? Because visuals are known to be far more engaging than words. Fact.

However, it goes deeper than that because the creative process of identifying and organising photography and video is one that clients love and really get involved with.

What’s more, carefeully planned photos and


Essential business guide to public relations photography from Holyrood PR in EdinburghEvery story can be told better with accompanying images – check our essential business guide to photography to find out how smart use of images can turbo charge your business message


4 – Measurement and results

The all-important end game of your PR campaign is to deliver the results you want.

When you work with reputable PR expert, you will start out by agreeing clear objectives and realistic goals. That is one of the best ways of breaking down any huge project into more manageable elements.

At Holyrood PR in Edinburgh, we have worked together with our clients to break down many daunting projects into successful campaigns, winning multiple PR awards in the process.

Not least among them was the special  Gold award for Best Use of Planning, Research, Measurement and Evaluation in the 2013 CIPR PRide award.

Please check out our PR awards section, since every one of the gold and silver accolades we have collected required us a to show real and measurable results for the most important people of all – our PR clients

Behind the bling PR awardsBEHIND THE BLING – Our PR agency has won a string of Gold and Silver PR awards. Behind the Bling explains what that mean for real businesses like yours – such as measurable results, including more sales or more website traffic.


Find out how our Edinburgh public relations agency can help your business.

We’d love to discuss the major, daunting projects facing your business – and explain how professional public relations could help break them down into manageable and enjoyable smaller pieces of work.

You can contact us on 0131 561 2244, or fill in the simple form below and we’ll get straight back to you.

    Your Name (required)

    Your Email (required)


    Your Message

    Scott Douglas, of public relations agency Holyrood PR in Scotland

    Scott Douglas

    Scott Douglas is the co-founder of the multi award-winning Holyrood PR, renowned public relations agency in Edinburgh, Scotland.
    As well as providing expert PR services in Scotland and the UK, the former journalist heads a team which offers a host of other professional media services.
    Those include crisis management PR, photography for business PR, affordable business video, social media campaigns and strategic content planning and delivery for businesses of all sizes.

    View Scott's Profile

    Related Posts

    So how can we help?

    Make an impact with PR photography

    Make an impact with PR photography

    Find out more

    Every story can be told better with pictures. Discover our affordable, high-impact photo packages.

    Benefit from business video

    Benefit from business video


    Find out how affordable video can bring a host of benefits to your business.

    If you have any comments or questions, please contact us.


    Keep ahead of your opposition by getting the free tips, insights and secrets we share for businesses. Straight to your inbox, every month.
    Email address
    First Name
    Last Name