How to use your loaf to banish Sunday night blues and super-charge your PR


Would you like to feel more excited about going to work on Monday morning?

According to new research published in the Journal of Positive Psychology one way to achieve this is by baking the night before.

A study of the diaries of 658 university students revealed that following creative activities like cooking, participants reported higher levels of enthusiasm and flourishing.

Who wouldn’t want to be flourishing? Apparently it’s a psychological term that refers to increased personal growth within oneself.

Dr Tamlin Conner, psychologist and lead author of the study from the University of Otago in New Zealand said the research suggests a positive ‘morning after effect’ whereby creative activity on the previous day predicts wellbeing the next.

This explains stories like this one from the Telegraph “Why home baking is about much more than a loaf of bread – it’s therapeutic, too” and why groups such as The Cotswold Flour Baking Club launched by our client Matthews Cotswold Flour are well, flourishing.

What has this to do with super-charging your PR?

Research is the bedrock of PR. Used well it really can super-charge your PR and give you a competitive edge. It’s used to identify, amplify and illustrate hundreds of stories every day.  It’s why my years at The Guardian and Observer Newspaper as Research Manager are so relevant today.

Many organisations have a wealth of research or data available to them which could provide valuable PR or marketing collateral if used in the right way.  Take a look at the headlines in your favourite news channel and see how many stories are based on a new piece of research or data.

So, if you’re looking for a way to achieve more effective PR, start with a good baking session one evening. Then the next day get in touch with us at Twelve PR.

With thanks to Mark at Mark’s Cotswold Bakery for this photo of his amazing artisan bread.

Are you asking the wrong questions?

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It was “Brexit plus plus” wasn’t it?  Trump was right. He confounded the media and the pollsters, just as the Brexit vote did.  So why did the pollsters get it wrong?

There are two different factors at play here:

  • Honestly answering the wrong question
  • Dishonestly answering the right question

The survey below which asks ‘What won the election for Donald Trump’ illustrates how this can happen.

Survey from CIPR asking people how come Trump won the election and we didnt predict it













Look at Q2.  Like most people I ticked  ‘because Trumps message resounded with people who weren’t accurately polled’. I don’t actually believe that, it was just the closest option to my views.

Yes his message must have resounded with people – they voted, he won.

But is it because people weren’t accurately polled?  No, I don’t think so.

Accurate polling means sampling a representative cross section of the population and asking them which way they are going to vote.

What can you do if people lie? It wasn’t politically correct to say you’d vote for Trump. As Paul McNamee wrote in the Big Issue: ‘his distasteful dog-whistle remarks rose like warts during the campaign’.

Not telling the truth and answering the wrong question honestly can happen all the time in market research if you’re not careful.

Here’s an example of how to overcome this problem.

I once ran a series of focus groups for an education client where, after the ‘official’ focus group was over, we stood around outside and chatted informally about the topics we’d discussed.   In these informal discussions, we gathered a completely different set of answers – which were the answers we used to correctly develop the product.

Lessons learned?  It was silly to ask the question “Will you vote for Trump?’ given how un PC he was, so the pollsters got a silly answer.

You have to ask different questions in different ways to get the right answer.

Don’t let your brand decisions be based on the wrong questions or approach.