Oil goes up. Oil goes down. Despite the importance of these moves to the health of the economy, eyes often glaze over.
There are loads of commentators talking oil every day so the instinct to tune out 'til something big happens is understandable. But there is a less obvious factor at work -- many business journalists don’t fully understand what drives oil price volatility, or how the changes affect them personally. That's a PR opportunity.
Oil is a commodity of course so supply and demand play their part. But its not the whole story — not by a long shot.
Everything from war to weather influences how much we pay for petrol. A slowdown in the construction sector can sink demand and therefore price, while a strike in the oil industry can cause prices to shoot up. A dip in the Pound can make crude imports more expensive. Political instability in oil-producing countries like Iraq can throttle supply, while Iran’s gradual return to major export markets opens up the faucets. A Polar Vortex slams the US east coast, with knock-on effects across the energy value chain. All these things go hand in hand with oil price volatility.
So — if you aren’t an established energy sector pundit or high-profile commodities analyst, how do grab media attention for your company's take on the complex story of oil price ups & downs?
Visually. This great infographic from Jones Oil gathers up the myriad of factors that affect the price of crude, cutting through huge complexity to tell a sophisticated story.
Quickly, scan-ably, share-ably.