How can you not like a guy who puts in his official bio:
As an entrepreneur, he has founded dozens of companies, most of which failed.
Seth Godin brings many dimensions to the marketing discipline not the least being levity.
A believer in the art of storytelling, he penned the book “All Marketers Are Liars: The Power of Telling Authentic Stories in a Low-Trust World.”
In fact, one of his blog posts from 2009 zeroed in on the intersection of storytelling and public relations.
I connected with Seth last week who was kind enough to give me the OK to dust off the post and republish.
The difference between PR and publicity
By Seth Godin
Most PR firms do publicity, not PR.
Publicity is the act of getting ink. Publicity is getting unpaid media to pay attention, write you up, point to you, run a picture, make a commotion. Sometimes publicity is helpful, and good publicity is always good for your ego.
But it’s not PR.
PR is the strategic crafting of your story. It’s the focused examination of your interactions and tactics and products and pricing that, when combined, determine what and how people talk about you.
Regis McKenna was great at PR. Yes, he got Steve Jobs and the Mac on the cover of more than 30 magazines in the year it launched. That was just publicity. The real insight was crafting the story of the Mac (and yes, the story of Steve Jobs).
If you send out a boring press release, your publicity effort will probably fail, but your PR already has.
A publicity firm will tell you stories of how they got a client ink. A PR firm will talk about storytelling and being remarkable and spreading the word. They might even suggest you don’t bother getting ink or issuing press releases.
Here’s one more point.
Sure, you can apply storytelling techniques to a news release.
But I would argue that great storytelling doesn’t easily scale.
How many times can Steve Job’s attention to minutia and black mock turtleneck carry the narrative?
Instead, finding and developing stories should be a never-ending process.