Read THIS!!! 11/21/11

22 Nov
Definitions of Public Relations:
  • PRSA: “Public relations helps an organization and its publics adapt mutually to each other.”
  • Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS): “Public relations is the strategic management of relationships between an organization and its diverse publics, through the use of communication, to achieve mutual understanding, realize organizational goals, and serve the public interest.” (Flynn, Gregory & Valin, 2008)
  • Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR): “Public relations is about reputation — the result of what you do, what you say and what others say about you. Public relations is the discipline which looks after reputation, with the aim of earning understanding and support and influencing opinion and behaviour. It is the planned and sustained effort to establish and maintain goodwill and mutual understanding between an organisation and its publics.”
  • “Effective Public Relations” (Cutlip, Center and Broom): “Public relations is a management function that establishes and maintains mutually beneficial relationships between an organization and the publics on whom its success or failure depends.”
  • Paul Holmes/Holmes Report: “Public relations is the business of helping organizations create policies, craft messages, and engage in conversations that enhance the relationships between the organization and its key stakeholders in order to maximize the benefits of those relationships to both parties.”
  • “The actions of a corporation, store, government, individual, etc., in promoting goodwill between itself and the public, the community, employees, customers, etc.”
  • Merriam-Webster: “The business of inducing the public to have understanding for and goodwill toward a person, firm, or institution.”

Sample Industry and Mainstream Media Commentary

  • From Jayme Soulati’s “Help PRSA Define Public Relations”: “Sadly, the current Public Relations Society of America website adopted a definition of PR in 1982, and it has never changed! (Do you realize this definition below pre-dates the fax machine?) In my post, I called upon PRSA to update the definition (others agreed), and here’s what the highly confusing explanation states: ‘Public relations helps an organization and its publics adapt mutually to each other.’”
  • From’s “31 Definitions of Public Relations”: “Say PR, as in public relations, particularly during a conversation about marketing and/or social media, and participants are liable to have vastly different perspectives on the topic.”
  • From The Economist (“Rise of the Image Men,” Dec. 16, 2010): “After a century of spinning, PR Man remains uncertain of his proper role. Is he a master manipulator? Is he the devil’s advocate (as long as Satan pays his fees)? Or is he a benign bridge-builder between the corporate world and the public?”
  • From Jack Shafer at (May 13, 2011): “Most PR campaigns are ‘smear campaigns.’ … “Every reporter approached by PR firms knows that the primary focus of PR firms is to push lies. If PR people were being paid to push the truth, they’d be called reporters.”
  • Advertising creates awareness
  • Marketing is the bridge between strategy and sales
  • PR is about influence and advocacy
  • Branding is definitive and asperational
  • Sales sells stuff directly

Work for hire – Get paid once for a creation not based on use

With a TM or registration you can keep rights

The professional process for creating a message

1. Bench-marking – internal – competitive – best practices — Learning how they all define themselves

2. Assessment – internal constituents – customers (who you work for) – influencers

3. Analysis – Establish attributes – Messages

4. Put it all together

Morality – elements of

  1. Harm
  2. Fairness
  3. Community
  4. Authority
  5. Purity

Tribalism is what it all comes down to

Situational Ethics & Moral Relativism


Quote of the day “The world is complicated; and we all have to eat.” -David Cundy


Books to read

Brave New World


Looking Backward



Amusing Ourselves to Death


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