Here comes the second half.
The communications industry has wakened to the fact that news releases alone will not build a media footprint much less shape a brand. Instead, the not-so-new shiny objective is thought leadership. Being a language geek, I’d like to break it down starting with that first word, “thought.” I believe I’m on safe ground in concluding that all organizations have thoughts. So far so good. But things begin to go sideways when we add that pesky second word, “leadership.” It’s not enough to just have thoughts.
I try to avoid picking on other communications consultancies since we essentially “live” in a glass house ourselves. Still, I couldn’t help myself after reading a NY Times article on Edelman pursuing, winning and ultimately parting ways with a private prison company called The GEO Group. While I don’t know the chronology of the events that led to Edelman landing the business, one would think the largest PR firm on the planet would do its homework and at least plug “the GEO Group” into Google.
The communications profession tends to undervalue the expertise that goes into this form of discovery — the interviewing techniques, research, dot-connecting logic and that scientific quality called persistence. This leads to our mantra for 2019: “The story is always there.” I’m not calling this a theme or a branding campaign because such labels short change the value of knowing how to go from point A to point B to point C, which ultimately gets you to Point D where the good stuff resides.
Most high-ranking execs value control. They want to control their products. They want to control their work force. They want to control the ratio of marshmallows to cereal in their Lucky Charms. This mentality explains why some haven’t come to terms with social media. To explore in more detail, we turn to U.S. Patent No. 1,242,872 also known as the Piggly Wiggly patent.
The final season of Game of Thrones played out this year. Rather than focus on the Iron Throne, I decided to explore the show’s persuasive language, specifically Season 5, Episode 8 when Tyrion tries to land the trusted advisor role in Daenerys’ inner circle. His delivery of the “You’ve got a bad-guy problem, Sistah, and it’s only getting worse” message is a work of art. With everything on the line, he shows the pure power of oration without any slides or props.
Thank you for spending time here with me in 2019.
I wish everyone a fun and healthy 2020.