Saturday, December 17, 2011

What others say about you

The final guest post from my grad students at NYU is by Emilie Fetterley, who, like Gov. Rick Perry, is no shrinking violet when it comes to expressing her political views.

by Emilie Fetterly

In a Forbes article a few weeks ago, Denise Suttman cites my favorite definition of what it is we do as public relations professionals: “Advertising is what you say about yourself. PR is what you get others to say about you.”

This may be true, but what then qualifies as "good PR" and what qualifies as "bad?"

Rick Perry's campaign video in which he slanders homosexuals and condemns Obama for his "war on religion" has been viewed by over 5 million people around the world. Now, most of the impressions of his ad are coming from mocking rebuttals like this:

Ok, humor aside, what publicist allowed this video to be made? A genius or an idiot? This video is offensive, horribly written and instigating. He may have just lost himself an election, but he did instigate. Isn't that the end goal of any public relations campaign? To succeed in the ever elusive call to action?

My lack of respect for this candidate has fallen no lower than its already subterranean level, but I have spent far more time than I should admit enjoying the responses. Am I one of the many who fell victim to a brilliant attention ploy or on the bandwagon of those laughing at a celebrity's stupidity?

Emilie hails from Seattle and though now a two-year New Yorker maintains her fierce loyalty to all things Starbucks in the land of Dunkin Donuts and Delis. Emilie began her career in London and now works in the healthcare practice of a large public relations firm.


Anonymous said...

Setting one's political views aside, is this really a badly written ad? It starts with a provocative statement, "I'm not ashamed to be a Christian," which sets up a clear paradox between Obama's liberation of Gay identification in a particular context and his (and others') suppression of religious identification in another. Isn't that very clear? And doesn't it immediately elicit sympathy from his intended base, the Christian Right and "silent Christians" who feel that they will suffer humiliation if they were to "out" themselves at work or school?

brandsinger said...

Thanks for the comment, o anonymous one.
I like your positive spin on the Perry ad: He's helping other Christians come out, just as gays have been urged to do. Nice irony there.

And thanks to Emilie for tackling such a hot topic without turning down the heat.


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