Journalista is on the hunt for a Senior Account Executive:
“I would have written a shorter letter,” the 17th century mathematician Blaise Pacal famously explained, “but I did not have the time.” Using similar reasoning then, many might have expected something a little more distilled to emerge from the 14 months that passed between the final hearing into the collapse of NHS care at Mid Staffordshire and the publication of Robert Francis QC’s report last week.
Diminishing advertising rates, plummeting circulations and shrinking newsrooms – we’re well aware of the problems facing newspapers in the UK. But how can the industry work together to streamline operations and protect scarce sources of revenue?
At last week’s Gorkana briefing (where PRs like us go to discover how not to irritate journalists) business hack James Ashton touched on the sort of collaboration that is helping to drive efficiency on the titles he works across – Evening Standard, Independent, Independent on Sunday and i.
When well executed, publicity stunts are a great way to create excitement around your brand and show that you can do something fun as well. They can be feats of creative genius that engage the public and add a little colour to the news cycle.
From FHM projecting a naked Gail Porter onto the Houses of Parliament to Prince changing his name to an unpronounceable symbol, the PR industry has found some truly ingenious ways to get people talking.
However, PR teams have occasionally strayed from headline-grabbing creativity towards sheer fabrication and are rightly exposed by the media outlets they are trying to court. Here’s my list of the top three not-so-subtle stunts that test the old adage that ‘all publicity is good publicity’.
As we enter the third week of the News International’s domination of the nation’s front pages I find myself reaching an unprecedented level of media saturation.
At this stage I should insert the disclaimer that of course phone hacking is a completely abhorrent practice, police corruption must be fully investigated and Murdoch’s grip on the British media should be the subject of a thorough national debate. This is a gravely serious matter. But in the meantime, the worst droughts in a generation struck East Africa and Southern Cross left 31,000 care home residents in the lurch.
As with any major political event, the death of the world’s most wanted man marked a PR operation of unimaginable scale.
Far from being a vanity project, the way that such incidents are communicated to the rest of the world has greater bearing than almost any other PR campaign. Inter-governmental and interfaith relations are just a few of the things at stake.
Here’s what we learned:
Transforming deeply entrenched public perceptions can be one of the greatest challenges facing any established organisation. Coupled with a not-for-profit budget, such campaigns rely on a creative and proactive approach.
Last week’s PRCA campaign masterclass examined the transformation of an organisation that was defined by an outdated public image – the Girl Guides. Traditionally conjuring images of white, middle class Christian girls cooking marshmallows and singing Kumbaya, the Guides were in need of a huge image makeover.
After an entire two months in professional wilderness, the most infamous PR figure of the year is back in business.
Andy ‘definitely innocent, but I’m still resigning’ Coulson left number 10 claiming “when the spokesman needs a spokesman it’s time to move on”. He clearly didn’t move on that far, as the Guardian today reports that the former News of the World editor is taking the role of consultant for a global conference for future world leaders.