Firm News

Keeping Royalty Relevant

July 12, 2018

What Brands Can Learn from Monarchy

The recent visit to New Orleans by the King and Queen of Spain was a glorious PR event that brought positive press for the royals, New Orleans and the United States. The visit was in celebration of the city’s tricentennial, a rare occasion for a sitting monarch to recognize the influences that Spain has had on the culture of the city. Royal families have become global PR machines that generate press and attention wherever they go. As the world grows increasingly networked by the day, many are defying a hyper-charged climate and utilizing some of the most basic principles of public relations to maintain stability and relevancy. While these traditional PR methods have historically proven successful for royal families across the globe, how will the monarchs of the future maintain success in the age of global communications?

1. Humanizing their brand

The most famous royal family, The British Royal Family, is the clearest example of how monarchy is being branded in our modern world. In the Newsweek article “How Princess Diana’s Death Changed Queen Elizabeth II and the British Royal Family” writer Josh Lowe comments on how a change in the British Royal family’s messaging and tone has allowed them to parlay their traditions into the modern world. Lowe writes, “Princes Harry and William, while keeping media access tightly controlled, strike a more human, emotional tone in the public pronouncements they do make than their forebears did.” In an interview with The Telegraph last year, Prince Harry opened up about his struggles with mental health, an example of the royal family using personal anecdotes to emotionally connect with the public abroad. This change in tone and the humanization of the royal family has allowed them to maintain relevancy in the 21st Century.

2. Adapting to the times

While many might not look at monarchy as a modern form of governing, the royals have always been good about keeping up with a fast-changing media landscape. The wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle was no exception, bringing a new and modern perspective to the royal family. An American actress and humanitarian, Markle represents a generational change that has the potential to redefine what it means to be a princess in the modern world. The couples’ communications surrounding the event were similarly groundbreaking for a royal family, with their engagement announced on Twitter instead of through traditional channels. This willingness to embrace new technologies will certainly serve the royal family well in the internet age.

3. Action over words

In a recent speech on the royal family, Robert Phillips comments, “The old normal was very much about 'what we say.’ Now, it is what we DO that counts. Actions, not words.” Through official visits and appearances, modern monarchs are writing the story that they are here to stay, and for a long time. As is the case of the King and Queen of Spain and their visit to the United States, by reaching out and engaging they are insuring their relevance and necessity in the modern world.

Tyler Ales is an Intern at Bond Moroch.