How to penetrate this Eastern European market.
Alina Morozova is chief account manager at ITCOMMS, an international PR agency.
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The country of Georgia is well-known for its hospitality and friendly nature, but it’s important to recognize its distinct local features in the PR realm right from the start.
Georgia has become a top destination for business development and relocation. The country boasts a welcoming business environment. It’s possible to register a company in just one day, and there are four free economic zones to take advantage of.
Since 2010, there has been significant advancement in the country’s economic development, as observed by the World Bank. According to estimates, Georgia’s GDP hit $24.6 billion in 2022, marking a 10.1% increase. However, this growth rate is expected to decline by the end of 2023.
Media consumption in Georgia
The World Bank reports that 79% of Georgia’s population has access to the internet. Most people in the country typically learn about the news from television broadcasts or via social media platforms. The Colab Medios Project’s 2021 report highlights that in Georgia, television is particularly popular with the over-35 age group, with a notable 78% of residents tuning in regularly. The results of a CRRC Georgia survey indicate that the three most popular TV channels are Imedi with 59%, Rustavi-2 with 53%, and Mtavari with 42% viewership.
Facebook, now under the umbrella of Meta which has been declared an extremist organization and banned in Russia, is widely used among social media platforms, with 67% of users logging in at least once a week. YouTube holds the second spot in popularity with 57%, while Instagram follows in third place at 25%. An additional 16% of users are on TikTok, while X has a 4% user base. Sixty-five percent of people regularly use messaging apps. Viber and WhatsApp lead in popularity with 35% and 30%, respectively, while Telegram holds the interest of only 4%.
In Georgia, there’s a noticeable shift from print to digital media. The country has a developed market for English-language media. When working with the media, it is important to keep in mind that their credibility in the country is very low.
Public relations in Georgia: Main characteristics
Public relations is an evolving field in Georgia, where PR specialists are relatively scarce. Typically, only sizable corporations, like TBC Bank, have dedicated PR departments.
The official language is Georgian, meaning all media materials require translation into this language. However, English may be used when engaging with journalists.
Essential tips for excelling in PR in Georgia
Customized content. Ensure that all press releases and expert materials are relevant and connected to the regional backdrop.
Networking. Georgia is a nation characterized by strong horizontal ties, where recommendations from friends and personal communication are highly valued and play a crucial role in the fabric of society.
Focus on the top media. The region hosts only a few media outlets, all with limited reach. As a result, it is crucial to prioritize engaging with the major, widely distributed ones.
Events are a linchpin. They hold a special appeal for local businesses and journalists. Whether it’s a press conference, a company anniversary, a press breakfast, or a brunch, events serve as a valuable opportunity to nurture relationships and offer something the media can appreciate. TV is the prime choice for event coverage.
Allocate funds for presents and subscription-based publications. Agreeing to free, unpaid media coverage is a feasible strategy, but I would still suggest allocating a budget for paid publications. On average, posting an article in a major media outlet costs $500.
Read in details in the Original article
Here’s what you need to understand when collaborating with Georgian journalists
The pace of work can be slow.
News embargoes often fail.
Journalists generally show little interest in clickbait headlines.
The opportunity to comment appears limited.
Journalists often edit press releases.
Journalists appreciate exclusive content.
Read in details in the Original article
Georgia’s PR market is in its formative stages, yet it offers opportunities to establish strong, trustworthy media connections.
The media landscape here is sparse and not all outlets are considered reliable. Therefore, it’s wise to focus on major international media right from the start. This approach can swiftly boost your company’s visibility in the market and facilitate the achievement of your objectives.
Leveraging materials and partnerships with local businesses can secure media mentions. Additionally, networking and face-to-face interactions with media professionals will solidify your success.