Blogger Relations IV: the doctor’s Real Problem with PR

As my regular readers know, I’m not a big fan of PR. (See Blogger Relations I, II, and III.) Most PR people just waste my time, sending me invitations to blog about charity events, the Miss America contest, or the latest self help book by the guru of the day. And those are the better ones. Others offer to schedule meetings the week after I’ve left the city, or schedule meetings without checking if the person they’re scheduling can actually make it, and then don’t tell me the meeting isn’t happening until the call doesn’t happen, or, in a few cases, I show up to an office and no one’s there. And while I will admit that there are a few acute professionals who defy the norm and deserve all the respect we can muster, it seems that I have the bad luck of getting, more often than not, the attention of those who were, obviously, last in their class.

But I’ve had a hard time putting my figure on what really bugs me about most PR professionals, until I stumbled across this article on 48 Guerrilla Marketing Tips from Top PR Pros. The article, which summarized the advice of 48 PR professionals, went something like this:

  1. PR Pro #01: Form relationships with businesses that sell to your customers and ask them to offer your customers discounts.
  2. PR Pro #02: Twitter
  3. PR Pro #03: Twitter
  4. PR Pro #04: Twitter
  5. PR Pro #05: Twitter
  6. PR Pro #06: Twitter
  7. PR Pro #07: Twitter
  8. PR Pro #08: Twitter
  9. PR Pro #09: Blogs
  10. PR Pro #10: Unique Voice
  11. PR Pro #11: Twitter
  12. PR Pro #12: Google
  13. PR Pro #13: Twitter
  14. PR Pro #14: Twitter
  15. PR Pro #15: SEO
  16. PR Pro #16: Twitter
  17. PR Pro #17: Twitter
  18. PR Pro #18: Facebook
  19. PR Pro #19: Google Analytics
  20. PR Pro #20: Be a “working study” for a University Class.
  21. PR Pro #21: Twitter
  22. PR Pro #22: Twitter
  23. PR Pro #23: MeetUp
  24. PR Pro #24: Twitter
  25. PR Pro #25: Twitter
  26. PR Pro #26: Twitter
  27. PR Pro #27: Twitter
  28. PR Pro #28: Think before you post. Sell thought-leadership.
  29. PR Pro #29: Twitter
  30. PR Pro #30: Twitter
  31. PR Pro #31: Twitter
  32. PR Pro #32: Twitter
  33. PR Pro #33: Twitter
  34. PR Pro #34: Twitter
  35. PR Pro #35: Twitter
  36. PR Pro #36: Twitter
  37. PR Pro #37: Twitter
  38. PR Pro #38: Twitter
  39. PR Pro #39: Link-share
  40. PR Pro #40: Twitter
  41. PR Pro #41: Online Marketing through Social Media
  42. PR Pro #42: Real Value
  43. PR Pro #43: Twitter
  44. PR Pro #44: Twitter
  45. PR Pro #45: Twitter
  46. PR Pro #46: Twitter
  47. PR Pro #47: Twitter
  48. PR Pro #48: Twitter

In short, an astonishing 73% think Twitter, which will make a twit out of you, is a PR strategy — and they think it’s a good one at that! Of the remaining 27%, 17% are promoting social media and/or SEO. Of the remaining 10%, 2% are recommending you convince someone else to offer value to your customers and 2% are recommending you appeal to University students (who may or may not graduate and get good paying jobs, and, therefore, may or may not be able to afford your products). This leaves a mere 6% who offer, at least in my view, worthwhile advice of having a unique voice, providing value, and thinking before you speak. However, not a single PR professional said the one, and only one, thing I want to hear. Good content. How can you have good copy without good content? I just don’t get it.

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