Niamh Anderson

Senior Publicity Manager - Little, Brown Book Group

What is your proudest professional achievement? 

The two years I spent co-chairing an internal staff network, Hachette UK's Gender Balance Network. I used this platform to initiate policy change and host events with tangible outcomes for colleagues, including bespoke career workshops and open-discussion panels on professional development delivered by senior leaders. This work closely supported Hachette UK's corporate communications, and our company has now been a Times Top 50 Employers for Gender Equality for four consecutive years. Our CEO invited me to speak at our parent company's 2023 LagardĂ©re Conference in Paris about this work, and representing the network and our committee in that way was a career highlight. I was so proud. But being included on the PRWeek 30 Under 30 is also up there! 

In your view, how can PR employers better retain talent? 

I have gained experience and progressed quickly by taking secondments and fixed-term contracts, benefitting from the unique corporate structure of Hachette UK. I have moved between divisions to develop a variety of communications skills by working across a wider range of projects, authors and stakeholders. Encouraging PR talent to take initiative and to orchestrate unique opportunities for their own professional growth outside an 'ordinary' route for development can only help retain talent. Being a big company, there's naturally more opportunity for movement, but I am also indebted to mentoring schemes and brilliant communications managers who, from early in my career, encouraged me to work and think outside the box. If you work with a talented, ambitious junior publicist, say yes to their ideas as much as you can. Encouraging your colleagues to think originally and creatively will only benefit your company, and make everyone's job more fun. 

What's the secret to good client/agency relationships? 

Three things: transparency, speed, and bespoke care. Every author I work with has different needs, but a trusting relationship is the foundation of all good communications work. I approach all campaigns bearing the importance of a few core client principles in mind: believing in their potential and showing that belief and commitment to their success from the outset, being honest, available and communicative, managing expectations, maintaining support, exploring strategic and varied outlets for publicity, and when relevant, delivering media training. And always being ready to adapt! 

Which social media platform do you use more than others, and why? 

The publishing world is firmly a Twitter/X world. It's a fantastic networking tool, it's a source of gossip, and it's the place to hear the latest books news, including book prizes, publisher acquisitions, career moves. But above all, publishing professionals inevitably have the best book recommendations‚ X is the place to get these directly from authors, fellow PRs and journalists. TikTok and Instagram are useful too (the potential dangers of sinking hours into BookTok aside), but X remains a leader.