It’s good news that the business community continues to elevate the importance of PR and marketing. On the other hand, this recognition can bring unintended consequences. An example is the suit Massachusetts brought against Publicis Health for its alleged role in helping Purdue Pharma sell opioids.
While TV shows and novels tend to focus on the glamorous side of PR, it’s important to remember that in reality communication also is necessary to raise awareness of topics some may find uncomfortable.
Information warfare is no longer a problem just for governments. Increasingly, companies find themselves targeted. Few have adequate defenses. As the threat expands, developing the capability to counter disinformation needs to be at the top of your to-do list.
Gone are the days when companies could comfortably stay out of the U.S. socio-political morass. The old strategy of remaining silent or neutral quickly riles customers and other stakeholders in today’s charged, social media-savvy culture. For most brands, it is hard to imagine how taking a stand on a political hot potato won’t alienate customers. Yet, when done correctly, taking a political stand can build brand and employee loyalty.
Along with what you say, how you say it, or tone of voice, helps establish a public perception. Tone can be critical during a PR crisis.
There’s one thing you can say about social media–sometimes it helps remove doubt. It goes to a principle that communicators know well: Nothing disappears once it’s posted on social media.
Can brands continue to stay out of the political spotlight, or have we reached a point of no return? Recent developments in the Southeast seem to point to the latter. Over the last week, two household names in the U.S., Amazon and Publix, have been forced to respond directly to comments made by elected officials.
Some view Dr. Deborah Birx as the previous administration’s medical enabler. Indeed, during a March 28 CNN interview she admitted the substantial numbers of deaths could have been reduced had the White House adopted better policies and communicated them correctly. Her admission provides little solace to mourning families. And it might not help salvage her image.
It’s fitting that today, March 24, 2021, is both Equal Pay Day and the birthday of PRNEWS’s founder, the inestimable Denora “Denny” Griswold (1908-2001). Griswold’s birthday is special this year, though. Just one week ago, a large package arrived at the Museum of Public Relations. It’s sort of a birthday gift for PR historians worldwide.