When PR Has Its Head Up Its Ass

 

pr talking out its assI read a post over at Mom Blog Magazine that left me shaking my head the further I read, and reinforced why so many bloggers don’t like PR agencies.

Entitled Why PR People Get Paid And You Don’t, it was a post by an anonymous PR professional (“Sarah”) who, in her own words, is “an actual employee at an actual PR company; one you’ve heard of if you’ve heard of any.”

Basically, the post was an “explanation” of why bloggers shouldn’t get too full of themselves and expect cushy blog promotions with companies that are represented by PR agencies.

Some of the gems of wisdom from Sarah include:

But you also aren’t getting hired. You’re writing a blog post. Let’s stop pretending your blog is a world-changing event and recognize it for what it is–something transient that may be gone tomorrow if you flake out or change your mind or your Uncle Vinny finds your blog and you realize you don’t really want him to know where you live because you still owe him money.

You don’t promise to say nice things about the company. The PR person does. They have to sell a product no matter what that product is, and they sell it with a smile even if it kicks puppies and makes babies cry. You don’t have this obligation. You have the freedom that comes with NOT having a paycheck to answer to.

You are not expected to show up at 8 a.m. dressed business casual and go to countless meetings.  You get to do and say whatever you want as long as you plop a disclaimer at the end.

Inspiring stuff, huh? It doesn’t stop there – in the comments, Sarah continues to dismiss a lot of valid responses that question her logic (she does also answer politely as well, to keep the balance). She also implies that the post was humorous in some of her comment replies, but I’m not too convinced.

But humour aside, Sarah does absolutely nothing for the case of PR understanding the importance of bloggers, and a lot for the mindset that PR sees bloggers as second-class media.

Bloggers Are Your Marketers

In Sarah’s post, she’s specifically writing about mommy bloggers, but it could be about any blogger from any niche. And Sarah’s implication – which, by default, is indicative of he employer – is that bloggers aren’t really meant to be taken seriously when it comes to PR needs.

So bloggers don’t have to say nice things about a client or their products? Bloggers are fairweather transients? Bloggers get to say and do whatever they want as long as they plop a disclaimer at the end?

Bullcrap.

It’s exactly because bloggers don’t have to be all fairy dust that they’re so valuable to brands (and the PR agencies that represent these brands). The problem with too many businesses is that they have PR Yes people crawling up their butt saying everything’s great, when it so clearly isn’t. And then they wonder why new Product A failed so miserably on launch.

Getting feedback – honest feedback – from bloggers and their readers is the best focus group a company can ever have, because it is so honest. Want to improve your product? Listen to the folks that matter – the people that use it.

leaving pr industryAs for being transient? It’s a well-known fact that the PR industry is one of those that has a particularly high turnover rate when it comes to jobs.

One-off projects and cutthroat practices mean a lot of people are left high and dry at the end of a project. Or burned out, from demands of the industry itself.

The saving grace for PR professionals is that this leads to a lot of job hopping, with agencies looking to fill spaces left by previous owners. Bloggers, on the other hand, don’t have the luxury of being able to job hop. The closest they come is getting a new Mac or PC, and possibly a new chair.

And Sarah’s point about not having to go to countless meetings? Perhaps not physically, but that view discounts all the Skype meetings, conference calls, email exchanges and IM chats that regularly happen as part of a blogger outreach program. And I guarantee you that many bloggers would LOVE to be able to sit in on client meetings to offer some more insights and gain a better understanding.

If you don’t like going to meetings, don’t work in a service-related industry.

Open Up and Smell the Bloggers

I look at the whole blogger and PR relationship from both sides. I have a PR background, and Bonsai Interactive offers PR services. Part of that is blogger relations and who should be used for individual campaigns.

I’m also a blogger, and I work with PR agencies now and again to promote their clients (always disclosed) so I get to see firsthand how bloggers are viewed by PR people.

Sarah’s viewpoint is disappointing. In one blog post, she’s basically implying that bloggers should be grateful for anything PR throws their way and that they should also know their place in the pecking order (again, Sarah’s words).

I don’t know if this is just her personal viewpoint, or reflective of the agency she works at, but either way it’s disheartening to see. I know a ton of amazing PR folks that truly value all that a blogger – any blogger – can bring to the promotional table.

People like Gini Dietrich, Shonali Burke, Dave Fleet, Rachel Kay, Arik Hanson and many more. These guys are bringing great successes for both their agencies and clients – all because they treat bloggers with respect and as a key part of any communications strategy.

Perhaps Sarah’s post was meant to be humorous. If so, she missed the funny boat. She also didn’t paint her employers in a great light, as the readers of Mom Blog Magazine made clear in a lot of their replies.

Perhaps bloggers don’t get paid the same way PR professionals do. But the minute a blogger is contracted to write a review of a product, or promote a new book for a PR agency’s client, that’s being hired. As such, you should extend the professional courtesy and dealings you give clients to the blogger.

After all, they’re the ones making you look sexy to the client when they get the jump in brand awareness or sales that a respected blogger can offer.

And that’s got to be worth more than some outdated PR view that “it’s not a proper job”, no?

image: Whyatt
image: Zen Optic

 
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198 comments
JGoldsborough
JGoldsborough

@BeckyCortino @Shonali Pretty simple, really, IMO. If Sarah believed in what she said, she's a coward for not owning her comments. We are all adults here. If she wrote the post to spark heat, she's pathetic/smarter than we give her credit for. Either way, she comes off looking ignorant. And I'd direct that comment at her if I knew who she was :).

Shonali
Shonali

@BeckyCortino I'd agree with you in terms of lauding her free expression, except that she did it anonymously. That seems a little cowardly to me; and if the reason they kept her identity secret was so as not to have repercussions on her agency or work... well, then that's a whole other story. If one has something to say, one should have the guts to say so openly. Just my $0.02.

JamesDBurrell2
JamesDBurrell2

I run the marketing department for a family owned, small business. My education was in finance and international trade, and most of what I apply toward our PR & Marketing strategies is what I've learned by the age old method of guess and check(and more recently from listening to the voices on this and other blogs). However, reading her post, I can't help but see similarities between her stance and that of many naysayers in trades of all industries and areas of life. "Because it's not how I do it, it must not be right." "You'll never get that idea to succeed." "Stop being a dreamer, and get a real job." I blog about my business because it reinforces my belief in our mission and products - whether a single sale is generated from a follower or not (obviously a blog that drives sales is preferable). I remember sitting in an interview 4 years ago discussing my career ambitions with the interviewer. I said that I wanted to set foot on multiple continents in a business capacity before I was 25. He told me that it took years of paying my dues to reach that goal citing his lack of doing so as evidence. Well chief, I made it with 6 months to spare. I'd rather 'stay up till 3AM' as you guys have put it writing from my bed than toil away in a cube any day of the week. Cheers to all. Apologies for the length.

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

@BeckyCortino Maybe her goal was to spark heat? If so, fair play, she achieved it. Although, with the comments over at the Mom Magazine blog as well as here (and some other places), I wonder if the negative take from the post was worth it?

BeckyCortino
BeckyCortino

As a longtime indie PR professional (with international agency experience) and also a blogger, Sarah's comments sound unplugged and agenda-driven. The reality of communication today is the variety of available vehicles, associated paradigm shift, and environment within which we now operate.

BeckyCortino
BeckyCortino

As a longtime indie PR professional (with international agency experience) and also a blogger, Sarah's comments sound unplugged and agenda-driven. The reality of communication today is the variety of available vehicles, the associated paradigm shift, and environment within which we now operate.

Shonali
Shonali

I planned to comment yesterday, @dannybrown , but a migraine took care of that. Now I have to see if I can add any value other than thanking you again for the kind mention.

I read through as many of the comments as I could on the original post without being in danger of a cardiac event. I wish "Sarah's" original comment that drew so much ire hadn't been deleted, because now I'll never know what it was. Oh well.

A couple of things struck me: first, we all tend to generalize. We can't help it; it's human nature. So props to you and all those who've pointed out that we all need to try to be aware of not doing that.

Second, so much of how we react to things is governed by our experiences, and I was never more struck by this than when I saw "Wicked" last week in London (actually, I was struck by that when I read the book when it first came out, but it was reinforced by seeing the show). I'm not trying to make excuses for "Sarah" or anyone else, but more than likely she has been on the receiving end of what might have been excessive "demands." Could she have written a less arrogant post? Sure. But there's rarely smoke without fire. However, this again speaks to the dangers of generalization, and had she thought of that while writing, her post may have been slightly less harsh and more positively educational in its expression.

Finally, and I'm echoing what many have already said, but I do feel it bears repeating, there are good and bad apples on both sides of the aisle; in any industry, in fact. There are those who clock out at 5 pm (or whatever time they're officially allowed to), and there are those who will stay up and/or work around the clock to make sure work is taken care of.

Your reply to @Marie about needing an ombudsman is something our industry - and note I'm saying "our" industry, because we are all swimming in the "communication" pond now - desperately needs. I do think some organizations like PRSA in the US are trying to bridge the divide by reaching out more to folks who would not ordinarily have been considered "PR" to participate in their events; the recent International Conference in DC was testament to that. I don't know if similar organizations that have evolved from the online/tech/blogging world are doing that as well, but perhaps that could be a baby step.

Shonali
Shonali

I planned to comment yesterday, dannybrown , but a migraine took care of that. Now I have to see if I can add any value other than thanking you again for the kind mention. I read through as many of the comments as I could on the original post without being in danger of a cardiac event. I wish "Sarah's" original comment that drew so much ire hadn't been deleted, because now I'll never know what it was. Oh well. A couple of things struck me: first, we all tend to generalize. We can't help it; it's human nature. So props to you and all those who've pointed out that we all need to try to be aware of not doing that. Second, so much of how we react to things is governed by our experiences, and I was never more struck by this than when I saw "Wicked" last week in London (actually, I was struck by that when I read the book when it first came out, but it was reinforced by seeing the show). I'm not trying to make excuses for "Sarah" or anyone else, but more than likely she has been on the receiving end of what might have been excessive "demands." Could she have written a less arrogant post? Sure. But there's rarely smoke without fire. However, this again speaks to the dangers of generalization, and had she thought of that while writing, her post may have been slightly less harsh and more positively educational in its expression. Finally, and I'm echoing what many have already said, but I do feel it bears repeating, there are good and bad apples on both sides of the aisle; in any industry, in fact. There are those who clock out at 5 pm (or whatever time they're officially allowed to), and there are those who will stay up and/or work around the clock to make sure work is taken care of. Your reply to @Marie about needing an ombudsman is something our industry - and note I'm saying "our" industry, because we are all swimming in the "communication" pond now - desperately needs. I do think some organizations like PRSA in the US are trying to bridge the divide by reaching out more to folks who would not ordinarily have been considered "PR" to participate in their events; the recent International Conference in DC was testament to that. I don't know if similar organizations that have evolved from the online/tech/blogging world are doing that as well, but perhaps that could be a baby step.

MommaCupcake
MommaCupcake

Also I doubt very much that PR stay up till 3 in the morning writing a quality post. Taking pictures, ediiting, proofing, marketing. Kiss my pink ass PR.

MommaCupcake
MommaCupcake

Also I doubt very much that PR stay up till 3 in the morning writing a quality post. Taking pictures, ediiting, proofing, marketing. Kiss my pink ass PR.

MommaCupcake
MommaCupcake

We are the social media stars. Stars can make or break a brand. HFCS anyone? Nestle????? Hmm. Exactly why HFCS people had to take out national tv prime time ads to try to keep the damage from spreading. Too late.

MommaCupcake
MommaCupcake

We are the social media stars. Stars can make or break a brand. HFCS anyone? Nestle????? Hmm. Exactly why HFCS people had to take out national tv prime time ads to try to keep the damage from spreading. Too late.

Marie
Marie

Danny, I like your post especially because if I google “PR” and “ass,” your post will probably show up. I would go through point by point but my head hurts. Maybe because it’s Friday or maybe it’s just that I never sleep any more with a newborn.

I rarely comment on blog posts; however it’s lunch so I thought I would chime in.
When I read Sarah’s post yesterday, I didn’t need a crystal ball to know what was going to happen down in that comment section. I just wish she didn’t hide behind anonymity, but I guess sometimes controversy is scary.

I’ve worked with bloggers for a long time. I’m also a blogger. I love public relations. I love social media. I love other bloggers. The reality is (sadly) is that there are always going to be bad pitches and PR mistakes. On the same note, there will probably always be bloggers out there giving other bloggers a bad name. I wish I were a glass-half-full kinda gal, but I’m not.

One of the main issues here is there is just such an over-generalization of the term “blogger” and the term “publicist” – and everyone gets caught up in the terminologies and nothing ever gets accomplished.

There are some bloggers that want to get paid. There are some bloggers that don’t. The definition of “payment” differs from blogger to blogger. There are some amazing PR people and there are some really crappy PR people too. This is an ever-changing space, and there will never be one opinion that will be crowned the overriding opinion that all bloggers and publicists must adhere to. In my fantasy world, I can only trust that new people stumble upon these conversations and learn something, comment, interact and spark real conversation that does something. That’s the hope.

I’ve been working with bloggers for a long time. Newsflash: there have always been terrible PR pitches. I can tell you there have always been complaints about PR people– they just used to be housed on private message boards. There have also always been not-so-great bloggers. For example, when I used to work in music, some bloggers would sell their advance copies of CDs on ebay. That caused a lot of drama back in the day.

The truth of the matter is that now traditional media is downsizing at a rapid rate, and PR pros are scrambling looking for new places to get their clients visibility. That’s their job. The result: blogger bombardment. Bloggers are getting just slammed, and sometimes too much of something is not always a good thing.

Blogging is work. Public Relations is work. Now we just need to find a way to work together so that everyone wins.

Okay, lunch is over!

Marie
Marie

Danny, I like your post especially because if I google “PR” and “ass,” your post will probably show up. I would go through point by point but my head hurts. Maybe because it’s Friday or maybe it’s just that I never sleep any more with a newborn. I rarely comment on blog posts; however it’s lunch so I thought I would chime in. When I read Sarah’s post yesterday, I didn’t need a crystal ball to know what was going to happen down in that comment section. I just wish she didn’t hide behind anonymity, but I guess sometimes controversy is scary. I’ve worked with bloggers for a long time. I’m also a blogger. I love public relations. I love social media. I love other bloggers. The reality is (sadly) is that there are always going to be bad pitches and PR mistakes. On the same note, there will probably always be bloggers out there giving other bloggers a bad name. I wish I were a glass-half-full kinda gal, but I’m not. One of the main issues here is there is just such an over-generalization of the term “blogger” and the term “publicist” – and everyone gets caught up in the terminologies and nothing ever gets accomplished. There are some bloggers that want to get paid. There are some bloggers that don’t. The definition of “payment” differs from blogger to blogger. There are some amazing PR people and there are some really crappy PR people too. This is an ever-changing space, and there will never be one opinion that will be crowned the overriding opinion that all bloggers and publicists must adhere to. In my fantasy world, I can only trust that new people stumble upon these conversations and learn something, comment, interact and spark real conversation that does something. That’s the hope. I’ve been working with bloggers for a long time. Newsflash: there have always been terrible PR pitches. I can tell you there have always been complaints about PR people– they just used to be housed on private message boards. There have also always been not-so-great bloggers. For example, when I used to work in music, some bloggers would sell their advance copies of CDs on ebay. That caused a lot of drama back in the day. The truth of the matter is that now traditional media is downsizing at a rapid rate, and PR pros are scrambling looking for new places to get their clients visibility. That’s their job. The result: blogger bombardment. Bloggers are getting just slammed, and sometimes too much of something is not always a good thing. Blogging is work. Public Relations is work. Now we just need to find a way to work together so that everyone wins. Okay, lunch is over!

JamesDBurrell2
JamesDBurrell2

@Dannybrown I may be reaching here, but her post could be the symptom of fear. I'm sure there will always be the need for PR Firms, but the relevance and functions of traditional PR has certainly changed (outsider's perspective - i'm not PR whiz). Let us remember, carriage makers scoffed at & belittled the importance of auto mobiles. Thanks for the kind reply Danny.

Dannybrown
Dannybrown

@JamesDBurrell2 Hey there James, Love your story, sir, and thanks for sharing it with us. Just goes to show - there will always be those that want it; those that say they want it; and those that actually do it. Nothing wrong with any of them - but don't be bitter because you wanted one and didn't make it happen. Like you say, perhaps Sarah is bitter about "having" to do something she doesn't want to. Writing about it doesn't seem the greatest way out ;-)

BeckyCortino
BeckyCortino

@JGoldsborough @Shonali ..again I say I definitely agree with you RE: expression with full disclosure, if someone means what they say, of course. For sure I never said I agreed with her comments...

BeckyCortino
BeckyCortino

@JGoldsborough @Shonali ...again I say I definitely agree with you RE: expression with full disclosure, if someone means what they say, of course. For sure I never said I agreed...

JGoldsborough
JGoldsborough

@BeckyCortino @Shonali Pretty simple, really, IMO. If Sarah believed in what she said, she's a coward for not owning her comments. We are all adults here. If she wrote the post to spark heat, she's pathetic/smarter than we give her credit for. Either way, she comes off looking ignorant. And I'd direct that comment at her if I knew who she was :).

BeckyCortino
BeckyCortino

@Shonali Guess I just took it as from "Sarah's" viewpoint, and didn't look at it as anonymous revelations... I definitely agree with you RE: expression with full disclosure, if you mean what you say, of course. As Danny said, perhaps to spark heat? My thought -- maybe to spark discussion. Guess so... lol

Shonali
Shonali

@BeckyCortino I'd agree with you in terms of lauding her free expression, except that she did it anonymously. That seems a little cowardly to me; and if the reason they kept her identity secret was so as not to have repercussions on her agency or work... well, then that's a whole other story. If one has something to say, one should have the guts to say so openly. Just my $0.02.

BeckyCortino
BeckyCortino

@Dannybrown I guess we can never really know for sure what the intended agenda was. It's her take and if she is willing to put it out there, then I laud her for her free expression albeit in the face of a firestorm. That is her choice -- and those are her words. Her comments sound unplugged to me inasmuch as it doesn't sound like she has a full understanding of powerful tools now available outside the traditional realm. Essential to stay current ;) It's a New Day.

BeckyCortino
BeckyCortino

@Dannybrown I guess we can never really know for sure what the intended agenda was. If her take and she is willing to put it out there, then I laud her for her free expression albeit in the face of a firestorm. That is her choice -- and those are her words. Her comments sound unplugged to me inasmuch as it doesn't sound like she has a full understanding of powerful tools now available outside the traditional realm. Essential to stay current ;) It's a New Day.

Dannybrown
Dannybrown

@BeckyCortino Maybe her goal was to spark heat? If so, fair play, she achieved it. Although, with the comments over at the Mom Magazine blog as well as here (and some other places), I wonder if the negative take from the post was worth it?

Shonali
Shonali

@3hatscomm I think you're spot on with how a bad day can be fodder for a good post, Davina. It's just that sometimes those emotions one feels in the heat of the moment can cool down, and then, when one looks at what one wrote, one goes, "Oh, I need to tone it down a bit." (Lot of "ones" there, I know). The heat of the moment is all very well, but I think looking at one's post in a more rational frame of mind can make it even stronger.

3HatsComm
3HatsComm

@Danny Brown @Shonali The bad day does work, as I like a good rant now and then. It's the emotion and passion that sometimes spark that "AHA!" post or comment. But it's the stereotyping, the generalizations like Shonali said.. this post lumped all bloggers into one category, a misguided and derisive one at that, as if it were fact beyond just this one person's experience with one blogger.

Shonali
Shonali

@Danny Brown Yes, I completely agree. I've been guilty of knee-jerk reactions myself and am trying to learn not to do that so much. Sleeping on one's irritation is always a good thing, though maybe it doesn't make for as provocative blog posts, which I'm sure she (and possibly her editor) were trying to go for as well.

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

@Shonali Oh, for sure, Shonali, no doubt Sarah has had some intresting days and experiences, and that can grate (we've all had them, and will continue to do so). But that's where she maybe should have taken a deep breath, count to ten, and ask if there was in value in what she was writing (especially as someone in PR).

Having a bad day can work on blogs - it makes you focused and often gets a great message out. But havng a bad day, and then basically attacking the folks that can make your day better? Not so smart ;-)

Shonali
Shonali

3hatscomm I think you're spot on with how a bad day can be fodder for a good post, Davina. It's just that sometimes those emotions one feels in the heat of the moment can cool down, and then, when one looks at what one wrote, one goes, "Oh, I need to tone it down a bit." (Lot of "ones" there, I know). The heat of the moment is all very well, but I think looking at one's post in a more rational frame of mind can make it even stronger.

3HatsComm
3HatsComm

@Dannybrown @Shonali The bad day does work, as I like a good rant now and then. It's the emotion and passion that sometimes spark that "AHA!" post or comment. But it's the stereotyping, the generalizations like Shonali said.. this post lumped all bloggers into one category, a misguided and derisive one at that, as if it were fact beyond just this one person's experience with one blogger.

Shonali
Shonali

@Dannybrown Yes, I completely agree. I've been guilty of knee-jerk reactions myself and am trying to learn not to do that so much. Sleeping on one's irritation is always a good thing, though maybe it doesn't make for as provocative blog posts, which I'm sure she (and possibly her editor) were trying to go for as well.

Dannybrown
Dannybrown

@Shonali Oh, for sure, Shonali, no doubt Sarah has had some intresting days and experiences, and that can grate (we've all had them, and will continue to do so). But that's where she maybe should have taken a deep breath, count to ten, and ask if there was in value in what she was writing (especially as someone in PR). Having a bad day can work on blogs - it makes you focused and often gets a great message out. But havng a bad day, and then basically attacking the folks that can make your day better? Not so smart ;-)

Dannybrown
Dannybrown

@MommaCupcake Oh, I do that all the time so we're in good company ;-)

MommaCupcake
MommaCupcake

@Dannybrown completely true. i was a little out of line there. :P

Dannybrown
Dannybrown

@MommaCupcake True. Although I do know there are a ton of PR folks that will stay up to that time getting presentations "just so", and perfecting a news release, or reacting to a client crisis to keep stakeholders happy. Everyone works differently but that doesn't mean there aren't a ton of hard-working people in PR that do the equivalent of a blog post that's been pored over until ready. :)

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

@MommaCupcake True. Although I do know there are a ton of PR folks that will stay up to that time getting presentations "just so", and perfecting a news release, or reacting to a client crisis to keep stakeholders happy. Everyone works differently but that doesn't mean there aren't a ton of hard-working people in PR that do the equivalent of a blog post that's been pored over until ready. :)

MommaCupcake
MommaCupcake

@ginidietrich meh lol. it just means we're insane or at least I am. nothing like passion eh?

ginidietrich
ginidietrich

@MommaCupcake Coming from the big agency world I can guarantee they're not up at 3 a.m. writing blog posts.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich

@MommaCupcake Coming from the big agency world I can guarantee they're not up at 3 a.m. writing blog posts.

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

@Marie "Blogger bombardment" - love that phrase, that should be a new mantra somewhere. :)

Great points, and having been in the trenches like you have, it would appear that (unfortunately) the same issues will continue to appear until we perhaps get an ombudsman that brings bloggers and PR together to try and work a best practices solution for all. I know some have tried, but it's clear it hasn't worked so far.

Time to revisit and provide suggestions and ideas?

Marie
Marie

@ginidietrich @3HatsComm Hey, at least you are preaching to someone. The good thing about putting it out there for it's there for those that are interested. I'm sure that the bad apples might not realize that they are bad apples which may be one of the problems. I also highly doubt those that are "doing it wrong" are saying "Wow, I suck at doing this I should really find out how to do it the right way." This is actually pretty depressing to think about, right?

ginidietrich
ginidietrich

@Marie @3HatsComm When we created Spin Sucks almost five years ago, it was with the sole purpose of discussing the poor ethics in our business. It took until about a year to really have an effect on the industry, but you're right...the good apples are the ones reading so we're still only preaching to the choir.

Marie
Marie

@3HatsComm Unfortunately, I doubt it. I tend to see the same folks commenting and discussing the issue. Rarely there are any new folks. It could be because bad apples just don't care, so it's left up to us good apples to keep the conversation going - even if it's just amongst ourselves.

3HatsComm
3HatsComm

@Marie This is it exactly, there will always be bad apples on BOTH sides of the aisle. PR will need bloggers, and bloggers will need PR, so yeah.. working together is what it takes. Blogging about it may help address these issues, but then.. are the bad apples really reading these blogs?

Dannybrown
Dannybrown

@Marie @ginidietrich @3HatsComm The last ones to "learn" are the ones that need the "teaching" the most.

Dannybrown
Dannybrown

@Marie "Blogger bombardment" - love that phrase, that should be a new mantra somewhere. :) Great points, and having been in the trenches like you have, it would appear that (unfortunately) the same issues will continue to appear until we perhaps get an ombudsman that brings bloggers and PR together to try and work a best practices solution for all. I know some have tried, but it's clear it hasn't worked so far. Time to revisit and provide suggestions and ideas?

Marie
Marie

@ginidietrich @3HatsComm Hey, at least you are preaching to someone. The good thing about putting it out there for it's there for those that are interested. I'm sure that the bad apples might not realize that they are bad apples which may be one of the problems. I also highly doubt those that are "doing it wrong" are saying "Wow, I suck at doing this I should really find out how to do it the right way." This is actually pretty depressing to think about, right?

ginidietrich
ginidietrich

@Marie @3HatsComm When we created Spin Sucks almost five years ago, it was with the sole purpose of discussing the poor ethics in our business. It took until about a year to really have an effect on the industry, but you're right...the good apples are the ones reading so we're still only preaching to the choir.

Marie
Marie

@3HatsComm Unfortunately, I doubt it. I tend to see the same folks commenting and discussing the issue. Rarely there are any new folks. It could be because bad apples just don't care, so it's left up to us good apples to keep the conversation going - even if it's just amongst ourselves.

3HatsComm
3HatsComm

@Marie This is it exactly, there will always be bad apples on BOTH sides of the aisle. PR will need bloggers, and bloggers will need PR, so yeah.. working together is what it takes. Blogging about it may help address these issues, but then.. are the bad apples really reading these blogs?

Trackbacks

  1. [...] The difference? In PR, they’re getting paid to do nothing but spew over-the-top praise for your product or service, even if it’s not something they’d personally use. Bloggers (the good ones) are honest. Open. That’s what makes them good and reliable to their readers. Bloggers get to say what they think; that might not necessarily be the case with PR folks. That also what might be stemming from the recent PR agency vs. bloggers battle. [...]

  2. [...] The difference? In PR, they’re getting paid to do nothing but spew over-the-top praise for your product or service, even if it’s not something they’d personally use. Bloggers (the good ones) are honest. Open. That’s what makes them good and reliable to their readers. Bloggers get to say what they think; that might not necessarily be the case with PR folks. That also what might be stemming from the recent PR agency vs. bloggers battle. [...]