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pr - July 24th, 2006

PUBLIC RELATIONS

The purpose of public relations practice is to establish a two – way communication to resolve conflicts of interest by seeking common grounds or areas of mutual interest and to establish understanding based on truth, knowledge and full information.

The scale of activity to promote good public relations may vary considerably according to the size and nature of the interested parties, but the philosophy, the strategy and the methods will be very similar whether the public relations programme is designed to influence international understanding or to improve relations between a company and its customers, agents and employees.

In a family, or a small, closely – knit community, there are few obstacles to mutual discussion and the communication of ideas, but even here there is plenty of opportunity for misunderstanding. In public or commercial life, however, the ‘family’ circle is usually widely dispersed and the absence of personal contacts makes cooperation and understanding difficult. People skilled in public relations practice modern methods of communication and persuasion to bridge the gap and to establish mutual understanding.
Public Relations, management function that creates, develops, and carries out policies and programmes to influence public opinion or public reaction about an idea, a product, or an organization. The field of public relations has become an important part of the economic, social, and political pattern of life in many nations. That field includes advertising, publicity, promotional activities, and press contact. Public relations also coexists in business with marketing and merchandising to create the climate in which all selling functions occur.

In industry, public relations personnel keep management informed of changes in the opinions of various groups whose support is needed: employees, stockholders, customers, suppliers, dealers, the community at large, and government. These professionals advise management on the impact of any action — or lack of action — on the behaviour of the target audiences. Once an organizational decision has been made, the public relations professional has the task of communicating this information to the public using methods that foster understanding and support. For example, a hospital merger, an industrial plant closing, or the introduction of a new product all require public relations planning and skill to calm people’s fears, enhance their understanding of what is proposed, and maximize support for the action.

Public relations also plays an important role in the entertainment industry. The theatre, films, sports, restaurants, and individuals all use public relations services to enhance their image and thereby increase their business. Other public relations clients are educational, social service, and charitable institutions, trade unions, religious groups, and professional societies.



The successful public relations practitioner is a specialist in communication arts and persuasion. The work involves various functions including the following:
· Planning — that is, analyzing problems and opportunities, defining goals, determining the public to be reached, and proposing and formulating a campaign of activities;
· Writing and editing materials such as press releases, speeches, stockholder reports, product information, and employee publications;
· Placing information in the most advantageous way;
· Organizing special events such as press functions, award programmes, exhibits, and displays;
· Setting up face-to-face communication, including the preparation and delivery of speeches;
Although its activities, goals, and effects have been subject at times to severe criticism, public relations is a significant force in the developed world. To avoid misuse of professional skills, several public relations organizations have developed a code of ethics for members. In totalitarian countries, the state has a monopoly on communications, and any public relations activities are government controlled, as propaganda. Public relations services are so far little used in many developing nations, but they are likely to become more prevalent in the future.


DEFINITION

Public relations is the deliberate planned and sustained effort to establish and maintain mutual understanding between an organization and its public.



WHY PUBLIC RELATIONS ARE NEEDED ?

We live in an age of ‘interdependence’. ‘Interdependence’ does not mean a country depending upon coolly upon another country. For example, oil less countries depend upon oil rich countries, and oil rich countries in turn, depend upon countries producing abundant food grains and other consumer goods; ‘developing’ countries depend upon ‘developed’ countries for technological know-how, and the ‘developed’ countries in turn depend upon ‘developing’ countries for commodities like tea, coffee, spices, and raw materials like iron, manganese, bauxite, zinc and other ores.













OBJECTS AND AIMS

The general theory of public relations leads logically to a discussion of the methods by which it is practiced.

The practical applications of public relations practice can be summarized under three main headings.

· Positive steps to achieve goodwill.
These consist in arousing and maintaining goodwill and public interest in the activities of an organization in order to facilitate the successful operation and expansion of these activities.

· Action to safeguard reputation.
It is equally important to look inward at the organization and to eliminate customs and practices which, though legitimate, are likely to offend public opinion or to interfere with mutual understanding.

· Internal relationships.
Using public relations techniques internally in order that the staff and employees of the organization shall be encouraged to identify their own interests with those of the management.
Many industrial companies, trade and professional associations and central and local government agencies, have set up public relations departments within their own organizations. Others have preferred to use the services of public relations consultants. Some organizations use a combination of the two.









PUBLIC RELATIONS IN AN INDUSTRY

Public relations in an industry and commerce are a function of management. It contributes to the successful operation of a company or organization in proportion to the extent to which it is allowed to play its part.

There are two main objectives of public relations in an industrial company. The first is to establish contact with three important sections of the public : its customers, its stockholders and its employees. Securing the mutual understanding and co – operation of these three groups is essential to success. The second objective is to promote the company’s services and products in a highly competitive world.




HATHWAY CABLES AND DATACOM PRIVATE LIMITED




COMPANY PROFILE

Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited was established by Mr. Rajan Raheja in 1995 as a part of the Rajan Raheja Group. The Rajan Raheja Group is well diversified with interests in a multitude of businesses with great emphasis on being market leaders in their respective areas. Having laid a strong foundation in the areas of Real Estate and Construction, Automotive Batteries, Cement, Ceramic Tiles, Mutual Funds, Hotels, it ventured into Media, Entertainment, Networking and Broadband Internet, Retailing in 1995.


Some of the group Companies include:

Real Estate – The real estate division of the Rajan Raheja group is known for quality homes and constructions.

Exide Industries Ltd. - India's number one company in automotive and Industrial Batteries controlled by the Raheja Group with a market share of 85% of automotive batteries in India.

Prism Cement Ltd. - The largest single-phase kiln cement plant in India with a 2 million tonne per annum capacity, set-up in collaboration with F.L. Smith and IFU of Denmark.

H&R Johnson Tiles- Pioneers of the Indian wall and floor tile industry, is a member of Johnson Ceramics International, UK one of the top five ceramic tile companies in the world.

RMC Ready-mix Co- promoters along with the world's largest manufacturers of Ready mix concrete, RMC Group plc, UK .

Globus Stores Pvt. Ltd. - This is a retail Chain venture of the group and has set up Globus stores at Mumbai, Delhi , Chennai, Bangalore and Indore , plans to launch more stores across the nation.

Outlook – India 's most exciting weekly news magazine with a circulation of over 2.5 lac copies per week.

Outlook Traveller - The most comprehensive travel magazine covering India & abroad, also has a portal outlooktraveller.com.

Outlook Money - India 's only personal finance magazine with a circulation of over 1 lac copies per week.

Asianet Satellite Communications Ltd. – The Company has state-of-the-art cable TV distribution network in the state of Kerela.

The R. Raheja Group also has its presence in various other industries like:

Petrochemicals - Investment interests in the petrochemical sector has led to the formation of Supreme Petrochem Limited in association with Supreme Industries Limited.

Asset Management – The group has a stake in Templeton Asset Management Co. Pvt. Ltd., a joint venture with Franklin Templeton Group, which manages over US$220 billion worldwide.

Software - A significant investor in Sonata Software, a company which today has the distinction of being among the top software companies in India .

Hospitality - The Group has entered into a joint venture with The Oberoi Group to have a chain of hotels across India under the brand name Trident.


LOCATION

Mumbai: Corporate Office
‘Rahejas', 4th Floor, Main Avenue Santacruz, West, Mumbai- 400054

Trade World, "B" Wing, 10th floor, Kamala Mills Compound, Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel (W), Mumbai- 400 013.


CORPORATE OVERVIEW

Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited is the largest Cable TV service in India. Hathway is guided by a vision - "To be a single point access provider bringing into the home and work place, the converged world of information, entertainment and services."

Being one of the largest Cable TV services company of India, spurs them to be the best in whatever they do. Established in 1995, Hathway provides quality Cable TV services in ten cities across the nation. With fiber optic backbone across its networks and state-of-the-art distribution set ups, Hathway brings the digital age through Cable transforming the way viewers receive information and entertainment.

Currently Hathway has three broad service areas.

· Cable TV- Hathway currently provides cable TV services in the following 10 cities: Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune, Nashik, Ludhiana, Jalandhar and Vijaywada.

· Digital Cable TV - Hathway becomes the largest Cable TV service provider to roll out Digital Cable TV services in 3 metros- Mumbai, Delhi & Chennai.

· Hathway Cable Internet - "Pioneers in Cable Internet technology in India." Hathway Cable Internet is the largest Cable ISP providing Cable Internet services in 8 cities across the nation:
Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune, Nashik and Ludhiana.

Hathway also has under its umbrella - Cine Channel (CCC), a movie based entertainment channel, C-News, a local centric news capsule, I TV, a unique dial in interactive music channel and various local channels like WIN Delhi, C-Hyderabad, C-Bangalore.

HATHWAY STAR STRATEGIC ALLIANCE



In September 2000 Hathway entered into a strategic alliance with one of the largest content providers in the world, STAR. This alliance will see the launch of enhanced and digital interactive TV all across the country, enabling the subscriber to access world-class broadband services on their TV sets.

AWARDS

Hathway is Winner of Best Cable TV service provider of the Year consecutively for 2002 & 2003 for its quality Cable TV and broadband Cable Internet services.







DIGITAL CABLE TV

Hathway Digital Cable TV services brings a fantastic selection of entertainment and services with quality, choice and control.

Through world-class technological support, a fully upgraded digital infrastructure and a commitment to increasing choice and value for their customers, Hathway brings the digital age transforming the way the customers want to receive information and entertainment.



CABLE NETWORKS

Hathway is one of the largest and fastest growing Cable TV networks in the country bringing more than 90 quality channels to your home.

Hathway's provides its cable TV services in 10 cities across the nation, namely, Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune, Nasik, Ludhiana, Jalandhar and Vijaywada.

Hathway has been bringing non-stop entertainment and information to your home by providing you more than 90 channels 24-hours a day seven-days a week.

Hathway distributes its signals through a world-class infrastructure backed with state-of-the art head-ends and hybrid fiber optic network.

BROADBAND

Hathway Cable Internet, the first Cable ISP in India, is seeking to revolutionize the way people access the web. The high bandwidth advantage of the cable infrastructure of Hathway brings the true broadband Internet experience through cable.

Hathway provides this service through its cable network on a subscriber's PC/ Corporate LAN using a cable modem/router. Hathway's fiber-optic backbone and its state-of-the-art Internet Node and Data Center makes the network capable of reliable Internet service as well as digital TV transmission.

HATHWAY AND QUALITY INFRASTRUCTURE

Reliability and quality are two pillars that make this possible. Hathway boasts of infrastructure that is top of the line in terms of quality as well as very reliable.

To increase bandwidth capabilities, Hathway has laid a fiber optic backbone in major cities, replacing co-axial cables which will power Internet with other limitless possibilities like, video-on-demand & VPN.

Hathway has also tied up with leading network companies to distribute its signals through underground fibre optic cable in Mumbai, Delhi & Hyderabad by locating optic fibre nodes at various points in the network making it’s cable Internet service more reliable.

HATHWAY STANDARDS

Hathway Cable Internet Service is based on DOCSIS (Data Over Cable Services Interface Specifications) protocol. DOCSIS has been developed by Cable Labs, a Research & Development consortium of Cable Service Providers in North & South America. It is now the de facto standard for all Cable Internet deployments across the world.
DOCSIS provides a level of security equal to or better than that provided by dedicated-line network access services, like the telephone, ISDN or DSL.





DEDICATED 24/7 CUSTOMER SERVICE

Hathway’s world-class customer service is local for each city and is available whenever the customer needs it. The customer can call their helpdesk anytime and they’ll be glad to assist them.


HOSTING / COLLOCATION

Hathway has infrastructure, technology and resources to provide the customers with value-added services. They have a well-equipped data center to support their requirements for Hosting or Co-locating the customer servers with them. They offer excellent facilities, internet bandwidth and suite of managed services. Their competent support team will be available to the customers to ensure smooth operations.

They will also provide the customers with excellent packages for their hosting and co-location requirement. They can cater to the hosting requirements of a wide range, starting from regular static website to dynamic business solutions. Hathway delivers high-end services to enterprise customers as well as turnkey packages to small and mid-sized businesses.




CONTINUOUS LEARNING

Hathway's commitment to continuous personal and professional development keeps us at the forefront in a fast-changing entertainment and information industry. Our continuous learning process is built around a number of focused employee development, personal improvement programmes along with job related trainings for an overall growth of our employees.

“While we work hard, we have fun too. We keep the fun alive within our employees by organizing Annual Sports Day, Kid's Day for the employees' children and various intra departmental meets. We also believe to give a generous amount of independency to the employee to have a free hand in their respective work.”











ESTABLISHMENT AND STRUCTURE OF THE PUBLIC RELATIONS DEPARTMENT

The public relations department in Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited was established in 1997. The reason for the establishment of the public relation department was to cater to the needs of the increasing number of customers.

There are 10 – 15 people working in the public relations department. There is the Public Relations Officer who is the head of the public relations department. He is the one who reports the issues relating to the organization to the C.E.O. There are other people who work under him. There is also a press officer who works under the Pubic Relation Officer.






PUBLICS

The main publics of Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited are students, office going people, people doing technical work as they require internet services to work for their respective profession. As this company has also many entertainment channels, it also creates many publics like housewives, children.










METHODS AND STRATEGIES ADOPTED BY THE PUBLIC RELATIONS DEPARTMENT

The following are the methods and strategies that are adopted by the public relations department of Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited.

· Press relation
Press relations are probably the most important single part of public relations in Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited. It is mostly misunderstood as both public relations and press relations are referred as PR. Press relations is essentially a two – way operation. It is the link between the organization and the press, radio and television news.

Confidence and respect between an organization and the press are the necessary basis for good press relations.

The best policy according to them is to take the press into your confidence at all times. They tell the press as much as possible, even the confidential matters and then tell them which items must not be published.
A press relation officer plays an important role here. A press officer in this company has to do the following things:

v Issuing news and initiating articles, features and reports.

v Answering press inquiries and providing a comprehensive information service.

v Monitoring the press, radio and television and evaluating the results; taking steps where appropriate to correct misstatements or to initiate counter – publicity.

In the company, it is not essential for a press officer to have been a journalist himself, but if he has not had personal experience of being a working journalist he is expected to have taken the trouble of visiting one or more newspaper offices and study the conditions under which the press operates.

Information is issued by Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited to a press by writing of a press release. This is sent by post or by hand to various newspapers and periodicals and to radio and television and news offices.

· Printed Word
The printed word is considered to be the most important medium of communication by this company. It is a medium between an organization and the outside world. The printed word includes office forms, invoices, letter headings and items of this nature which have little relevance to public relations, except that there is a great deal to be said for adopting a uniform image for the firm. Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited has a stationary department to order the various kinds of office printing, but the public relations staff is given the opportunity of making suggestions on the style and design of all these printed items.

The organization has adopted a house style which has become so well known that their products or advertisements are recognized instantly. The house style consists of a logo.



The organization also has a well established media which is the house journals. The house journals is important in promoting good public relations both internally and externally.

Leaflets, pamphlets, broadsheets, letters and telegrams are often used to have a profound effect on the people.





· Exhibitions and Trade Fairs
Modern exhibitions and trade fairs have become an accepted medium of public relations and trade promotion by the Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited.

The following things are taken into consideration for exhibitions:

v Deciding which exhibitions to support and to what degree.

v Preparing a brief and organizing the construction of the stand.

v Staffing and controlling the stand during the duration of the exhibition. This will include the period prior to the opening and during the dismantling.



· Advertising
Advertising is logically a part of public relations since it affects the relationship between the organization and the public and that in future it may become common for the person incharge of public relations to be responsible also for advertising.

According to the company, it is not enough to make a good product, to market it, distribute it and promote and sell it efficiently. Even a good product or a service may not succeed if the policies are weak and misunderstood by the public. Hence it is very important for Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited to advertise.

Prestige advertising is the type of advertising which is adopted by this company. The public relation department is competent enough to advice on the effectiveness or otherwise of the particular types of advertising.

Advertising is necessary for any company. Without the public relations department it sometimes becomes difficult to advertise effectively.



· Research
Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited finds that there is a need for research before a public relations programme is planned. There is also desirability of measuring results as the campaign gathers momentum.

Public relations is essentially an art of persuasion and in order to influence people it is obviously helpful to know as much as possible about the way in which people think and the manner in which they react to certain circumstance. Experience and intuition will provide an answer, but where it is desirable to obtain more factual or statistical data it is necessary to employ the techniques of motivation research, opinion research and market research which have been evolved to answer the problems of this kind. The company carries out motivation research, opinion research and market research.

Motivation research concerns itself with the investigation of the way in which people react to given circumstances or conditions. This depends on the psychology and on the environment and social pattern of their life. These factors all lend themselves to measurement, but it calls for expert skill and where motivation research is likely to be helpful in the preparation of a public relations programme, it is essential to seek expert help. Hence the company seeks experts help to carry out motivation research.

Opinion research techniques are much easier. It involves the mathematical basis of sampling, the preparation of quotas and the evaluation of results. This again is the province of the experts. It is important to know something of the way in which opinion surveys are carried out and their limitations.

One more method that is used for investigating public opinion is by using the ‘panel’ technique. A number of persons are asked to serve as a panel and to express their views on various questions which are put to them.

Research in public relations is not a separate subject but it is the very essence of successful public relations activity.


· Conferences
Conferences in Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited is a very important media of public relations. A conference is not a medium of mass
Communication, but its effect can be most profound.

Conferences are usually held to discuss policies or to debate manners of mutual interest, but their value lies as much in the opportunity they provide for people to meet and to get to know one another.

There are various types of conferences that are held. But the most important of all is the press conference. The holding of a press conference has become an accepted means of issuing the information to the press and it is very effective if used with discretion. A company like Hathway never misses an excuse for calling the press conference or holding a reception for the press.
The press conference is never called merely to hand out a document or information which could be issued equally by a press release. The main justification for holding a press conference is that subject as an important one likely to elicit plenty of questions from the journalist present.

· Hospitality
The art of hospitality in business should be exactly the same as it is in private life. According to this company, true hospitality does not seek to buy friendship; it is the background to the establishment of cordial and lasting relationships.

One of the assets of the public relation practitioner is his contacts and it is necessary to maintain contact with people by meeting them, having a drink together, inviting them to lunch occasionally and taking the trouble to keep the friendship alive.

For the company, public relations is not mainly entertaining, but in the course of a year a public relations practitioner may be called upon to organize a wide variety of social functions and meetings.
















OBJECTIVES OF PR DEPARTMENT

CUSTOMER RELATIONS

Relations with the customers depends very much on quality, price and delivery times, but also very directly on the reputation of the company. Public relations department in Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited plays a vital role in safeguarding the reputation or building up a new public image. It does valuable things to improve methods of communication with the existing potential customers. ‘Communication’ is used in its widest sense.

STOCKHOLDER RELATIONS

In the past, the sending out of the annual accounts and balance sheets was often the only contact between a company and its stockholders. Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited makes it a point to keep in touch with their stockholders by inviting them to film shows, or to open days at factories, sending them copies of house journal, etc.

EMPLOYEE RELATIONS

The public relation department contributes to the creation of an atmosphere in which people work more effectively and willingly and therefore produce better products and services at lower costs.

The public relations department in Hathway Cables and Datacom Private Limited cannot guarantee to prevent strikes, but a well conceived public relations programme plays a useful part in eliminating misunderstanding and lack of information which often leads to industrial action.






BIBLIOGRAPHY

For the completion of our project I have taken help of the following books and sites

· www.google.com ( Search Engine )
· www.businessweek.com
· www.indiainfoline.com ( Search Engine )
· www.hathway.com
· www.yahoo.com ( Search Engine )

· Public relations by Sam Black.
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