The Information Systems and Media Relations Team (iSMaRT), the official PR team of Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, Pune, proudly hosted PRoelio 8.0, India’s Biggest PR Face-off from the 20th of October to the 18th of November 2022. The one-of-a-kind PR-based case competition saw a record 700+ registrations from premier B-schools across the country, including IIM-Ahmedabad, IIM-Bengaluru, IIM-Calcutta, IIM-Indore, IIM Kozhikode, IIM-Rohtak, SPJIMR, MDI Gurgaon, NITIE Mumbai, NMIMS Mumbai, XLRI Jamshedpur, IIFT Delhi, SCMHRD and SIMC among others.
With increasing focus on the correlation between PR and public perception of reality, the theme for PRoelio 8.0 was centred around ‘Pride. Prejudice. Paparazzi.’ The case was centred around a fictional production house Miranda Studios and an ensuing conflict between the two co-founders Aftaab Ahmad and Gaurav ‘Shylock’ Sarkar regarding a departure from traditional beliefs and an attempt to commercialize their company. This eventually snowballed into a significant PR crisis for Miranda Studios and NetFilms, an OTT platform acquired by Miranda Studios.
Replete with interesting infographics, detailed KPI analysis and succinct press releases, the submissions had the evaluation panel stunned as the participants hit the perfect balance between creativity and analytics. After hours of soul-searching and nerve-wracking judging, the evaluation panel zeroed in on the top 6 teams who were required to present their proposed solutions before the esteemed panel of judges in the National Finals, conducted in the lush Lavale Hilltop campus of SIBM Pune, aptly titled ‘Hilltop Heaven’ on the 18th of November 2022.
The National Finals of PRoelio 8.0 lived up to the pomp, grandeur and insightful brilliance that has come to characterise PRoelio through the years. As the 6 teams fought tooth and nail with insightful solutions and unreal presentations, they only went on to exemplify the analytical and critical mindset and problem-solving abilities of the leaders of tomorrow.
The highlight of the National Finals was an exciting mock press conference, wherein a panel of 6 home-grown journalists, guided by a Senior Journalist, bombarded the teams with rapid-fire questions on their proposed media and PR strategies. The teams were addressed by the judges, who asked questions on the feasibility of their solutions and proposed extensions and provided valuable feedback for their improvement.
The esteemed judges’ panel comprised Mr. Avinash Gawai, Founder of Media4U and National Vice-Chairman of Public Relations Council of India and YCC, Ms. Aditi Ramdas, Founder of Good Relations India and Ms. Khushboo Kansal, City CEO – Pune, Blinkit and an alumna of SIBM Pune.
After tantalizingly narrow margins among the teams, Team Arnab Goswami, comprising Kshitiz Agarwal, Archit Gupta and Abhishek Jha from SIBM Pune, were crowned as National Winners of PRoelio 8.0, as the audience and their fellow finalists applauded in unison.
Team Sterling from Symbiosis Institute of Media and Communication, Pune, comprising Ashly Ann, Aashay Lalwani and Aadri Vishal, emerged as National Runner-up, with a unique presentation, replete with press release elements. To add icing to the cake, Gurbani Kaur Bhasin was crowned Best Journalist of the event.
The event left an indelible mark on all those involved and saw smiling faces and intrigued minds trudge back at the end of the day as PRoelio 8.0, yet again, rose to the occasion and set the gold standard for PR Case Competitions. Truly, Stuart Ewen’s quote was perhaps best exemplified by the event, “The history of PR is a history of a battle for what is reality and how people will see and understand reality.”