Jonah Bloom starts out well in this Ad Age article. He talks about how PR and marketing groups in many companies are starting to have many areas where responsibilities overlap, particularly in content creation for web sites etc. He mentions that he spoke to Richard Edelman about the convergence and Richard references how Edelman is interacting more and more with CMO’s…..then…BOOM! He’s back in the standard Ad Age perspective where advertising is doing everything right and PR is stuck in the stone ages.
Take a look at the two snippets from below and then please go read the full article.
Jonah, yes, defense is important in PR but anyone who is always playing defense is going to find themselves backed into a corner. The PR folks who are playing the game right are on offense and actively looking for new members of the team by engaging in conversations with their customers.
“It’s also interesting to note that the two departments are moving in opposite directions when it comes to the issue of consumer control. While marketers are all talking about giving up some degree of control of their messages, PR teams are becoming ever more officious controllers of the message. They seem frequently unable to countenance anyone — internally or externally — saying any thing they construe as off-message, and often employ techniques honed in the political arena to undermine the reputations of people or media they perceive as having crossed them.”
“In fact, arguably the biggest divide between the two departments in most corporations is cultural. Marketing executives are typically offense-minded: “How can we sell more or improve margins?” PR executives, on the other hand, often seem to be reactive and defense-minded: “How do we stop this potential horror story from ever reaching the outside world?” On several occasions I’ve heard top corporate-communications execs say their best work is the stuff you’ll never hear about.”