Milena Avramović-Bjelica, Co-founder and Executive Director, Chapter 4 Communications Consulting

In Step With World Trends

Chapter 4 Communications Consulting Group is the exclusive representative for Central and Eastern Europe of Burson-Marsteller (BM), the world’s leading PR and communications network, with which Chapter 4 cooperates on a daily basis, through quick and timely exchanges of knowledge and experience, but also through participation in individual studies implemented by BM

The Chapter 4 PR team comprises experts from various fields with a wealth of experience in providing advisory and strategic planning services, crisis PR and campaign implementation of international and local companies, as well as governmental and non-governmental organisations.

Chapter 4 is the representative for Serbia and the region of renowned agency Burson-Marsteller, which is this year celebrating its 60th anniversary. What forms the basis of your activities in Serbia and to what extent are your standards harmonised with the requirements of BM?

Members of our team often attend various regional and international seminars and webinars of the BM network and we are always happy when we see that our profession is one of the few in this country that keeps pace with global trends.

Chapter 4 provides PR support to the business activities of our clients through consulting services, strategic planning, the creative implementation of agreed activities, but also follow-up activities without which modern business is unthinkable, such as analytics and the evaluation of results, digital communications and design. The target groups and tools used changes depending on the industry in which the client operates. We constantly monitor market conditions and the factors that impact on them. Through a comprehensive approach we ensure that the relevant content and messages of our clients reach the intended audience at the right time and through the most effective channels. Our analytical skills, proactive approach and focus on measurable results are part of the world-class standards of business and advantages that our customers value.

Increasing acceptance of corporate PR leads to a better understanding of the benefits that companies gain from effective positioning related to different target groups

Based on your experience, is corporate PR accepted and how would you assess the trends of this sector in Serbia?

Increasing acceptance of corporate PR leads to a better understanding of the benefits that companies gain from effective positioning related to different target groups. If there was any doubt that PR is necessary, that is no longer the case. At a time when the mobile phone is a tool for informing, both related to work and play, which people unlock on average 150 times a day, and when the attention span has been reduced to just eight seconds, this is precisely the time when a potential user makes a decision regarding whether they will have further interaction with a brand, which depends on the quality of the message sent. The only important thing in this mission is strategically planned communication.

The significance of corporate PR is recognised primarily by large foreign and domestic companies. We have noted that the segment of small and medium-sized enterprises do not have sufficiently developed awareness of what PR implies, although this is also starting to change and we have already established cooperation with several companies from the SME sector in various areas that PR covers. Likewise, companies in the current era of digitisation have an increasing need for crisis communication and at Chapter 4 we have a lot of experience and knowledge in this field.

What are your priority target groups, and in which systems do you perform education?

Our target groups are all the sectors of the public with which we build relationships, clients from the profit and nonprofit sectors, the private and public sectors etc. Apart from them, we devote a lot of attention to working with students – within the framework of our practice placement programme. They stay with us in a period that suits them – optimally for about three months – in order to acquire certain knowledge in the field of public relations and to learn how to use certain tools and acquire adequate skills that will help them to do this work. We are proud of the fact that some of them even gained permanent jobs at our agency, as well as those who used the knowledge and skills acquired with us to obtain positions in international companies and thus spread the good reputation of Chapter 4.