THE MEDIA OF FINANCIAL PUBLIC RELATIONS (FPR)
The most difficult task of any public relations man is to determine and select the appropriate media to convey his
message to the relevant public. It is an undeniable fact that there are many broadcast stations and print media with their
individual public, editorial policies and special interests.
It is only when one has a credible survey research on the media content and circulation strength of a medium, that
one would be able to make an adequate choice. Once conversant with the major newspapers in the country, it is easier for the
PR man to determine the interest of most widely read national dailies. In deciding on media segmentation, it is necessary
to consider wide reach, right reach, and cost effectiveness. The distinctive characteristic of the print media is that, it
is handy and readable at all times. This serves as reference materials and is passable to others. Printed materials have additional
features of colours, pictures, cartoons and different sections for different purposes.
For the purpose of prioritising one’s choice, the national media that have business bias in their editorial contents
can be categorised in the following order:
These are purely financial
tabloids. In this category, we have the Financial Standard, Business Times, Business Day, Financial Telegraph and several
rested weeklies whose interests are almost 100% business oriented. They devote most of their reports to fiscal and monetary
activities in the economy. And if they discuss politics, from the headlines, it will be obvious that they are talking about
facts and figures associated with business news. There are also credible magazines in this category. They include The Policy
and the Industrial Leaders.
Among the widely read dailies, there are those that are patronised by the business elite due to their large concentration
on share index, investment, emerging financial market, foreign exchange rate, e-business and the general business policy.
Popular among them are, The Guardian, whose Business Guardian was rested, Thisday, National Interest
and The Comet newspapers.
The dailies in this group are those whose areas of coverage are in-between financial news and other socio-political
accounts. The papers also offer a very consistent news balance and have story penchant for political events, ethical questions
and entertainment. They have constant, probably weekly sections on the economy, money market and the business world. In fact,
some like the Vanguard have daily special pages called Vanguard Business. The newspapers in this category, apart
from the Vanguard, are The Champion, The Punch, Nigerian Tribune, Daily Trust, the Post
Express and Daily Independent newspapers. Most of the highly rated magazines like, The News, Newswatch, Tell
and Citizen magazines, also fall under this category.
Even though many print media have come to grip with the reality of the readership delight
of mature adults in key management positions and increasing shareholders’ appetite for investment news, the general
purpose dailies are switching to more business news in greater depth, through granting interviews to chief executives of business
organisations. The papers in this category cover special interests, which range from government, entertainment, politics,
culture, tourism, sports, technology, arts and literature. They nonetheless have occasional columns on financial management
and publish stories and features on the economy. In this category, we have the government-owned newspapers like Daily Times,
New Nigerian, Daily Sketch, Observer, Herald and Triumph newspapers and other privately owned
dailies like The Anchor, Monitor and others.
electronic media are the most neglected channels of mass communication, which are not rightly utilised by public relations
executives. This may likely be due to the difficulty of monitoring their activities on the airwave. But still, the public
relies mostly on the broadcast media for accurate and current information on happenings. The major electronic media here are
the television and radio. They are easily operated on electricity and batteries and so, the cheapest and easily accessible.
The broadcast is usually made in understandable languages that even semi-literates can decipher. While the radio’s audio
and easy mobility have their strength, the television has the combination of audio and visuals, or what is often popularly
referred to as sight and sound as its unique features. In view of the importance of financial reporting, the media have specific
programmes on the business world. In fact, the privately owned stations have enough covering stock market, banks, insurance,
and the business world. Some of these stations that have carved a niche for themselves in this regard include African Independent
Television (AIT), Minaj Broadcast International (MBI) and Murhi Televisions, among others. The Nigerian Television Authorities
(NTA), which had monopolised the television industry for years, has, due to competition, increased its programmes on economic
issues to attract more commercial patronage and viewers. It also invites public and private bodies to feature on its programmes. It also has business correspondents whose major concentration is the coverage
of financial and economic activities. One notable aspect is sponsored documentaries. There is also live broadcast on Fiscal
Budget Breakdowns. The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) under
Gaius Obaseki effectively uses network services to highlight its achievements and announce the daily distribution of petroleum
products for public appreciation.
stations are similar in the nature of coverage of events but have larger audience due to their light and mobility features
as well as their long-lasting affordability. Financial reporting is common on the radio, with lots of financial adverts, especially
for promoting products. This is a great potential for utilisation by a public relations person. But there are all indications
that with the licenses given to individuals and groups to own radio stations, with also their innovative performances, all
hope may not be lost in this regard. Credit may be given to the few stations that run special segments on monetary trends
even though most of them are concentrated in big business cities like Lagos, Abuja, Port-Harcourt, Kano,
Warri and Ibadan.
are news agencies that support other media with transmitted information through wire services. The media coverage of those
agencies is not restricted to a specific news beat as they provide all media with easy access to news and article after subscribing
with them. News Agency of Nigeria (NAN)
is one of the effective and efficient media agencies from where most of the Nigerian and international media culled news stories.
Other global news agencies with representatives in Nigeria
include the Associated Press (AP), Agency France-Press (AFP) and Reuters.
developed countries, there are many companies that offer the list of media outfits with their circulation strengths, target
audience and other information for stakeholders who desire to make the right choice in media patronage. Nigeria has witnessed the same recently with the emergence
of media independent shop, Media Reach Ltd which unveiled a booklet titled Nigeria Media facts. For media planners and buyers,
the publication which is intended to be produced annually provides reliable information and data on all serious media in the
country and their rating with regards to local, regional and national reach that could aid communications managers in their efforts to reach the right publics. It also serves as a reliable easy access and top line reference material on the media.