Diary of an Insurance PR: Full Circle’s Ant Gould

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Ant Gould, director of Full Circle Communications, ghost-writes, pens press releases, reviews award entries and even puts on his tie to moderate an industry conference.

Ant Gould fullcirclecomms

Monday

I woke up – which is always a relief, especially now I am rushing headlong towards 60 – and after a cup of Rooibos, headed down to my laptop in the lounge (yes, I know, saying lounge not front room, dining room or reading room exposes my roots) and dived into my emails from the weekend.

After a brief interruption to take in the Sainsbury’s shop (it’s a glamorous life) and record a quick “congrats on 25 years” video for my former colleague Insurance Post content director Jonathan Swift, it was down to work.

First off, writing a blog for an MGA following a call last week, then reviewing another client’s industry report to look for news angles and narratives that could resonate with risk managers, and then, finally, lunch – well, cheese and biscuits.

The afternoon was mainly reviewing insurance industry award categories, a series of online client meetings discussing PR opportunities, some press monitoring and reporting plus a bit of end of month accounts administration to round off the day.

Tuesday

cycling-london

Woke again. Phew. Sent out a press release about an acquisition and then onto the bike to cycle into the City.

This morning was all about, well, us, as a business: where are we going, why, will we need to recruit again as we grow… you know the sort of thing.

Also including the usual SWOT, PEST, etc, with the top team of Kirsty Plank and Matt Beasley.

Then back on the bike to the home office. Quick press coverage search and report and onto ghost writing an article for an international insurance client, followed by various Teams meetings until about 6pm before I close my laptop.

Wednesday

The 20th British Insurance Awards were held at the Royal Albert Hall

Still here. A quick cup of tea and then sent out another press release, this time on senior hires, followed by back-to-back planning meetings with clients on future activity, including an annual report news release and press briefing.

Another cuppa, and then onto an onboarding and company narrative defining session with senior management at a new marine sector client, followed by a rough draft strategic release.

Carved out some time for a social media – well, LinkedIn – market review, adding a bit of commentary here and there.

There were certainly a lot of #BIA2023 posts, and while I was not due to be there – I think my invite must have got lost in the post – I did reflect on my fond memories of hosting the awards and treading the boards of the Royal Albert Hall stage many moons back.

Later that night I was sent a last-minute press release request, and then monitored social media for the BIA winners to be able to send congratulations and commiseration emails to relevant clients.

Thursday

Ant Gould chairing

Arrghh. Early morning alarm. Got up earlier than usual to send out a last-minute press release, iron a shirt, find my tie, and brush the dust off of my suit as it was Managing General Agents’​ Association’s annual conference, and they are one of our clients.

Other than helping orchestrate press meetings I also had the honour of chairing the annual head-to-head debate for the third year running.

So, a quick review of the topic, speakers and potential questions, and it is was on the bike and off we go – dusting down my shoes on route.

A long day but got to catch up with clients that were either exhibiting or visiting, and natter to a few old contacts, colleagues, and journalists.

Hung around for the MGAA Awards and quick drink where another client picked up an award, and then pedalled off home.

Friday

Ant Gould fullcirclecomms

Arise, fresh as a daisy that has been picked and left scrunched up in someone’s pocket. Conferences are always far more tiring than you think.

First job was to catch up on the deluge of emails and messages from yesterday, pen (well, keyboard) a few article submissions on subjects as diverse as artificial intelligence and diversity, and write up the action points from yesterday’s ad hoc meetings.

I then squeezed in my so-called daily lunchtime walk – the first time this week – to the local park and back via a latte stop – and back to the laptop, sheltering from the blistering sun and clamouring heat.

A client planning call, a bit more writing, and then the end of week team catch up call at 4pm.

After which it was wine and crisps o’clock and time to write this Diary of an Insurance PR article – before finally closing the lap top lid for the weekend. Thanks for your attention.

Ant Gould is director of Full Circle Communications

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