The role of effective media relations in Trust growth

Katie Whirledge

By Katie Whirlidge, Papillon Communications

The focus on Trust growth is intensifying and across the country, there is an increasing emphasis on the importance of marketing your Trust accordingly. Like many of your stakeholders, the media is watching closely – education will always make headlines through virtue of it being something we all have an interest in – and they will comment as and when they see fit.

It’s fair to say that the media has not been overly supportive throughout the emergence of academy trusts. The misdemeanours of a few caused suspicion across the sector and journalists have long memories. Covid-19 has had a lot to answer for, but one small chink of positivity for Trusts has been the acknowledgement that its collaborative model works. Government’s findings concurred with the reality that the majority of Trust schools felt more supported than stand-alone schools (most of which felt heavily impacted by their isolation). Therefore, the effectiveness of academy Trusts is back on the agenda for the media – each publication aligned with its own political persuasion – and there’s certainly an appetite for debate. This appetite brings opportunity for CEOs who want to challenge or change the narrative – and one of the most powerful and productive ways of doing this is to share positive stories and case studies that showcase the many great achievements of your Trust.

“Like many of your stakeholders, the media is watching closely – education will always make headlines through virtue of it being something we all have an interest in – and they will comment as and when they see fit.”

Papillon Communications are commercial partners to Forum Strategy as part of a ‘paid-for partnership’ they have with us. In selecting our partners, we also do so with strong reference to their expertise in their field and commitment to Forum Strategy’s values and ethos.

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