Geez, we should be flattered, not annoyed. PR, says the Center for Public Integrity, is a craft that works all too well. But that’s only if it’s practiced well. PR is a method of getting a message across. If the message is worthy, it will likely gain followers; if it isn’t, despite the “best PR,” it probably won’t.
The Center apparently is upset that public relations and advertising involve “going to the public.” As though humans weren’t born, and meant, to communicate. Also to use their heads, do their homework and make choices. If we don’t do that well, and make poor choices, it will catch up with us. That happens, but we’re not supposed to communicate in the first place?
PR is for packaging. But, any respectable PR person will tell you, you’ve got to have something worth packaging in the first place. Sure, manipulators may be able to play games for a while, but that’s not the best PR. That’s gamesmanship; it doesn’t last. And, we need to constantly remind folks, there’s a difference between PR and advertising. PR has greater depth, it invites people to use their heads as well as their eyes.
Yet, thanks to the Center for Public Integrity, we’re in the dock (again) today. Be proud to give to prospective clients and the public a true accounting of what PR can accomplish, when it’s practiced well for worthy ends.