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August 8, 2013
Should the 'Golden Years' Tarnish...
What's likely to be a huge market for public relations counsel as baby boomers age — retirement communities — is illustrated by the "Damage Control..." news release issued by Senior Marketing.com President Kevin Williams in the wake of a PBS Frontline report on an assisted living center. The report focused on the death of onetime pro football star George McAfee at an Emeritus Senior Living center. Williams offers some strictures to retirement center managers.

An unfortunate aspect of retirement center communication is that it's an area in which PR and marketing can be all too readily confused. Marketing, of course, is aggressive, then defensive should something go wrong. PR needs to be enlightened about avoiding mess-ups in the first place, then effective should one occur anyway. After all, that's why PR is a "relational" craft. 

It's interesting, therefore, that Kevin Williams highlights "common sense steps" that assisted living centers should take to mitigate risk. Of course they should.

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Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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