Photo courtesy of City of Vancouver archives

Working in PR we are big fans of the written word, and appreciate a clever turn of phrase. We know how important it is for anything we write to be accessible to a wide audience, be it a blog, press release or even a 140 character Tweet.

As such we have a great appreciation for one of Scotland’s most beloved sons, Robert Burns. By writing not only in his native Scots, but also in English and a lighter Scots dialect, he ensured his poems, sonnets and even political commentaries reached the whole of the United Kingdom and beyond.

This innovative approach to his work gained the Ayrshire farmer a global following, and earned him a permanent place in the history books.

Clearly, Scotland has long been considered a global leader in creativity and inspiration, across many sectors. Here are some more Scottish innovators that have helped shape the modern media, and even how we do PR.

Newspapers. Print stereotyping was invented by Edinburgh goldsmith William Ged in 1725. Ultimately this process led to the mass production of printing plates, enabling larger numbers of newspapers to be made, faster and cheaper than ever before.

Today newspapers remain an important medium for us. By working with both national and regional titles, we help our clients share their news across the country, engaging with their target audiences to promote their brand effectively on a large scale.

Colour photography. We understand that a great photograph can make or break a story in both print and digital. As such, we are indebted to James Clerk Maxwell, also from Edinburgh, whose three-colour method is the foundation of colour photography. The first colour photograph was in fact taken in 1861 during a lecture of his – not in photography however, but physics and physiology!

Radio. James Clerk Maxwell was a busy man. In 1864 he successfully proved mathematically that electromagnetic waves could transmit through free space. This led to the invention of radio, and eventually commercial broadcasting became a vital mass medium for entertainment and news.

National radio shows still consistently attract large numbers of listeners. Additionally, local stations provide a great way to engage with regional audiences. Whether our client is mentioned throughout the day in the news bulletins, or is given the opportunity to present their news in a more in-depth discussion, radio is the ideal medium to reach people in their homes, cars and even places of work.

Telephone. Another of our most well known innovators, Alexander Graham Bell, famously invented the telephone in 1876, revolutionising the way we communicate today.

At Hot Tin Roof, the phone is an invaluable tool in our work. We use it to contact the press directly, selling in stories and finding opportunities for our clients. We don’t give up, and keep going until we’ve pitched the story to all our targets.

This means the reporter gets the press release, rather than just emailing it over and hoping for the best, and that we can discuss any queries they might have directly to get our clients the best results.

Scottish innovators today. Scotland remains a creative hotbed and the calibre of Scottish innovation has certainly not dwindled over time. We’re lucky to work with many incredible companies, whose clever ideas and fearless ambition keeps us busy. Keep up the good work! Go Scotland!

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