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Archive for the ‘Pure PR’ Category

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soundbite journalisim

Warren Buffett’s letter to shareholders nails the idea of "sound-bite journalism".

Last year we saw, in one instance, how sound-bite reporting can go wrong. Among the 12,830 words in the annual letter was this sentence: “We are certain, for example, that the economy will be in shambles throughout 2009 – and probably well beyond – but that conclusion does not tell us whether the market will rise or fall.” Many news organizations reported – indeed, blared – the first part of the sentence while making no mention whatsoever of its ending. I regard this as terrible journalism: Misinformed readers or viewers may well have thought that Charlie and I were forecasting bad things for the stock market, though we had not only in that sentence, but also elsewhere, made it clear we weren’t predicting the market at all. Any investors who were misled by the sensationalists paid a big price: The Dow closed the day of the letter at 7,063 and finished the year at 10,428.

Blogs, tweets, and the social world can fix this. By participating in the stream, the like of Buffet don’t need to wait for an annual letter to disable misrepresentation, they can do it in real-time. Their brand affords them a platform at least equal to that of any media outlet.

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THe New Communications Playbook

Having been in communications for much of my career it is rare to see any company communicate with courage. So often intent is made opaque by murky language and hyperbole. Corporate word bingo can be played off most announcements. But not Google’s yesterday.

Google’s move last night ushers in a new order in communications. Protocols and the business-as-usual approach to government and business get replaced with transparency and honesty. The first priority, it would seem, is their shareholder and users.

From over at the Merc:

"In a world in which we are so used to public relations massaging of messages, this stands out as a direct declaration. It’s amazing," said Jonathan Zittrain, professor of Internet law at Harvard Law School and co-director of Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society. 

Imagethief beats me to the punch on this one… but it is dead-on.

Google has taken the China corporate communications playbook, wrapped it in oily rags, doused it in gasoline and dropped a lit match on it. In China, foreign companies tend to be deferential to the authorities to the point of obsequiousness, in a way that you would almost certainly never encounter in the United States or Europe. Scan any foreign company’s China press releases and count the number of times you see the phrase, "commitment to China". Demonstrating "alignment with the Chinese government’s agenda" is an accepted tenet of corporate positioning and corporate social responsibility work in China. This is testament to the degree of direct power that the Chinese authorities wield over the fortunes of foreign businesses in China. Even when foreign companies are in dispute with the Chinese government they tend to offer criticism obliquely as long as they have a business stake or operations in the country. Note, for example, the scrupulous diplomacy of Rio Tinto’s communications concerning the detention of its employees last summer, a far more serious situation than anything Google has encountered (although also with far more money at stake).

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NZ Govt Targets PR Jobs…

Purely a PR move? Lets see how well these functions function without communicators… What seems to have been overlooked here is whether the PR jobs have increased or decreased proportionally to other roles…

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PR 101 Rule #1

When a crisis occurs, your CEO or Chairman needs to show-up. Really. Continental crashed at Denver last night. Their Chairman was on the replacement flight. Good Move.

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You Moofer

Are you a moofer?

moofer – a mobile out of office worker – ie. someone who works away from a fixed workplace, via Blackberry/laptop/wi-fi etc. (also verbal noun, moofing)…

Some other great words here… Personally, I’d love more topless meetings…

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