Friday, October 31, 2008

Morgan PR reveals the Seven Deadly PR Sins in Newbury Business Group 10 Minutes Masterclass

No sooner do I become chairman of the Newbury Business Group than I find myself in the hot seat for the 10 Minute Masterclass! Having spent many of my previous presentations explaining tips and tricks to boost your PR it really did seem about time to explain where it can go wrong.

You see, for all the marvellous advice on the best ways to get good publicity, there are some things that you should never do, or at least not without careful consideration. These are the bear traps for PR prima donnas where journalists with sharpened pens await the unwary. These are our Seven Deadly PR Sins that the PR professional knows to resist.


Lusting after journalists is generally not a good way to go about getting something published, nor is any covetous approach to a story. For instance, pursuing a single publication with wild-eyed abandon rarely works and depending on your story and the background you can often achieve great exposure by having a story published locally first.


You should know when enough is enough in PR. You may be on to a good thing but do not outstay your welcome. Anyone who gorges themselves on a PR opportunity without considering how this will be interpreted runs the risk of the journalists being turned off and the next story you have will be ignored, however good it might be.


If Gluttony is over indulging in PR, then Greed is about hungering after that feckless feast without regard for a balanced diet. This greed is not good. Journalists rarely respond to desperation and they actually find those repeated calls irritating. So do not be greedy. Ensure that the story is worthy of coverage and accept what it gets. Learn and provide a better story the next time. Or become known as greedy and see how many column inches that translates into.


There really is no excuse for any kind of behaviour that either sees you blithely ignoring a PR opportunity or worse still, not helping a journalist once they are writing a story. I can recall times as a journalist where a good news story died on the vine because calls went unreturned. Very rarely is doing nothing the best option. Sloth is a very good way to destroy your PR reputation, though!


‘Do you know how much we spend on advertising?!’ No, they don’t and they really do not care. Journalists do not sell advertising and very rarely will they cower at the threat of you pulling advertising. Take a deep breath and work out how to make right the slight that prompted you to think of foolishly threatening to withdraw advertising.


You may see stories that competitors have succeeded in getting published and wished that you had thought of whatever has claimed them the headlines. Be inspired, but do not dwell. What can you learn and do better next time. Certainly do not be tempted to brief against your rival. That is the advanced class and needs careful consideration.


Be humble in victory. Certainly there may be times when you are entitled to puff out your chest and bask in glory, but let the media pour on the pride, you should be modest and even slightly embarrassed and your PR will have far greater impact than trading on vanity. Richard Branson, anyone?

What do you think?

If you have fallen foul of any of these sins they may not be deadly if properly addressed. They can however leave any PR strategy starting from a disadvantage. If you think you have suffered for committing a public relations sin we can help you repent! Seriously, with a little tender loving care and a deft bit of remedial PR, Morgan PR can help you back on to the right path.

No comments: