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Thursday 11.20: Real Public Relations
 

Thursday 11.20: Real Public Relations

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Kevin Taylor

Kevin Taylor

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  • I’m a career-long PR man… I’ve spent sometime writing for various publications, but PR is my thing…. And I am a big fan of this simple definition… And what I don’t understand is…. When did this become a bad thing…. Every organisation has people that are important to it… in recent years we have changed that word “publics” to more sophisticated terms such as audiences and stakeholders… But I am not the president of the chartered institute of stakeholder relations…. And as president of the chartered institute of public relations… I like the terms publics. They can be customers, rate payers, voters, suppliers, staff, shareholders and other investors, retail distributors, and of course – analysts, opinion formers and the media… Too many people in public relations, including those that buy our services - concentrate on that last element – the media. They do themselves and our industry a dis-service.
  • Let’s look at what public relations is concerned with… reputation Love this definition of reputation – what you do what you say and what others say about you… Our industry’s fixation with media relations results in an unhealthy obsession for some in our industry with the “what others say about you” part of this definition…. And that in itself helps lead to the poor reputation that PR itself enjoys…
  • SPINWATCH is a web site that reports on PR and SPIN… It has plenty of descriptions of PR… not many of them complementary… here’s a particularly poor one… The issue is that the more some elements of our profession try to exert control by limiting access… the less we are trusted… Look at the words here – Control and Limit. Not Inform and Engage… the basis of my preferred definition We, and the organisations we serve, need to engender trust…because a lack of trust manifests itself in many ways…. And look where a lack of trust can take you…
  • Look at this headline and story from The Guardian. Notice how it is less the arguments that any such group might assemble to tell their story that captures the paper’s attention – The Guardian’s concern is centred on cutting off support. It sees the role of PR here as entirely negative. Here’s another quote from Spinwatch….
  • Sadly… both this description of PR and the campaign being outlined against Obama… were well rounded campaigns that did not just deal with media relations… But many of the elements discussed are outside the CIPR code of conduct and are at best unethical and at worst illegal… Fake grassroots support – also known as astroturfing is unethical… the donations discussed to key politicians in the Guardian piece border of bribery and are obviously unlawful. After three slides like this… I need to remind myself of the strength of real PR…
  • There is nothing negative in these definitions…. No desire to restrict, limit or prevent. Much better to inform and engage and seek to build positive relationships with the people that influence your operation. Every business and organisation engages in this form of PR… the question it needs to ask itself, is how well it is managing that communication. Let’s look more closely at reputation…

Thursday 11.20: Real Public Relations Thursday 11.20: Real Public Relations Presentation Transcript

  • Real Public Relations Kevin Taylor, 2009 President, CIPR Director, CCgroup Surviving and Thriving Public Sector Conference Edinburgh, October 15
  • What is real public relations?
    • The planned and consistent programme of communication between an organisation and its publics
  • What is real public relations?
    • The planned and consistent programme of communication between an organisation and its publics
    • Public relations is about reputation: An organisation’s reputation is the result of what you say, what you do, and what others say about you
  • How some of our critics describe PR
    • Public relations works to control and limit the public's access to information about the rich and powerful
  • Barack Obama's key climate bill hit by $45m PR campaign Surge in oil, gas and coal industry lobbying against Democratic leadership on 'cap and trade' legislation America's oil , gas and coal industry has increased its lobbying budget by 50%, with key players spending $44.5m in the first three months of this year in an intense effort to cut off support for Barack Obama's plan to build a clean energy economy. The spoiler campaign runs to hundreds of millions of dollars and involves industry front groups, lobbying firms, television, print and radio advertising, and donations to pivotal members of Congress. Its intention is to water down or kill off plans by the Democratic leadership to pass "cap and trade" legislation this year, which would place limits on greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Sophisticated media manipulation, fake grassroots campaigns, using third parties to separate the message from the self-interested messenger, delaying action with voluntary measures, co-opting possible critics; these are all commonly used tools and tactics of the lobbying and PR industry. They are employed by industries from car makers to energy companies, retailers to food manufacturers.
  • What is real public relations?
    • The planned and consistent programme of communication between an organisation and its publics
    • Public relations is about reputation: An organisation’s reputation is the result of what you say, what you do, and what others say about you
  • What you do… and what you say
    • Involve PR in the decision-making
      • Understand how business decisions will be seen
      • Think of the reaction as well as the action
      • Will this improve or build relationships
    • How to announce
      • What do we say
      • Who should we talk to
      • Does anyone need a heads-up
    Plan your communications strategically PR as a window on the world
  • What others say about you…
    • Get the first two right and….
      • Word of mouth works in your favour
      • Comment and opinion can move in your favour
      • Staff, partners and suppliers understand their role and become supportive
    “ I’m hearing good things about you…”
  • Getting the message right
    • Consistency is key across all audiences
    • Underpinned by your core values
    • Relevant to the audience you are addressing
    • Remember the “Who, what, why, where, when rule
    • Context is as important as content
    • Own the message – devolve the delivery
  • It’s all about relationships
  • It’s all about channels
  • Raising standards
    • Changing the reputation of PR
    • Increasing understanding of what we do
    • Education and qualifications
    • Ongoing development – life long learning
    • PR the benefits of PR
    • Improve our standards
    • Media relations can be good
    • Digital era opportunity
  • The CIPR
    • Qualifications awarding body
    • CIPR Diploma
    • Leading training provider
    • Code of conduct and ethical standards
    • Continuous Professional Development
    • Individual Chartered Practitioner status
  • Real Public Relations Kevin Taylor President, CIPR Director, CCgroup PR Surviving and Thriving Public Sector Conference Edinburgh, October 15 Thank You!