Published on December 4th, 2012 | by Joshua S Hill2
UK Renewables Industry Needs Better PR
A report released last Thursday by the CleanTech division of British PR consultancy firm CCgroup has revealed that the UK renewable industry is receiving short-shrift from the national media industry, with a majority of articles focusing on a negative approach to reporting on the industry.
The report, “How the UK national media treats renewables,” looked at the country’s five most widely circulated newspapers throughout July of 2012. In the end, the researchers looked at 138 articles from across The Sun, Daily Mirror, Daily Mail, The Daily Telegraph, and The Times.
The report made it clear that the renewable industry in the UK must make a concerted effort to increases its positive media if the industry is to continue growing.
This report does not necessarily indicate a national shift away from renewable energy. It was only a month ago that YouGov released an opinion poll that showed a clear majority of the British public want the government to use more solar and wind power.
Only 21 percent of the national newspapers articles covering renewable energy are positive, however, and spokespeople from the industry are only quoted in ten percent of articles.
More than 50 percent of the articles were found to portray the industry negatively.
“Right when the renewables industry should be seeing rapid growth, it’s in the centre of a communications crisis with the media holding one arm behind its back,” Charlotte Webster, Head of CleanTech at CCgroup, said.
“This economy boosting, innovative, business savvy industry is simply not having its story heard. But it’s not the media’s ‘fault’. There is an empty platform here that renewable energy businesses need to fill, with urgency, and those that do will be the ones to see the rewards not just for industry as a whole but themselves too.”
“I’d advise that organisations in the renewables space regain control and make themselves available to media by investing in communications, particularly with the trade press,” Webster continued. “Tuning into talking and telling stories of innovation and growth will help strengthen the industry and increase the visibility of positive stories and facts in the media as a whole. What’s clear is that investment really is needed to turn this picture around.”