We could tell you (but then we’d have to kill you)
What is public relations, other than the careful management of a company’s reputation? Well, very little, especially in an age when consumers own your brand.
It’s a mantra we live by, with plenty of organisations and individuals calling on our expertise to put out proverbial fires. To maintain the veil of secrecy we can’t reveal their names, but rest assured serious players trust our talent in this arena.
Take a leading British digital business that was working on a high-profile release for a global distributor. With intellectual property a multi-million pound legal minefield there’s no accounting for the damage that can be done when details are leaked.
And that’s exactly what happened when samples of said product began appearing on some of the internet’s most visited video and image hosting sites. So, how do you pull in the reins when nobody owns the web, with content turning viral and going global in a matter of hours? In this case it takes round the clock monitoring, and close communication with You Tube et al to highlight copyright infringement and have potentially damaging work removed, and fast.
Monitoring allows a true measure of the scale of the leak but also offers an insight into potentially powerful influencers in any given sector that could then be harnessed in a positive manner going forwards. If that’s done properly the result is a firm pat on the back, a successful release, and three happy parties.
Case number two would be a unique business that fell foul of an aggressive social media campaign. Stakeholders were bearing the brunt of abusive postings that stopped short of defamation, preventing any legal action, and direct responses to contest negative statements are an outright web 2.0 no-no. That means this is a difficult place to be. But with intelligent counter campaigns and experienced professionals advising on how to diffuse the situation all was put right.
We could go on, though as it’s impossible to give details that might be quite dull. And you probably get the point by now. In 2011 no amount of marketing and feature placement can reverse the negative effects impacted when the online world shows its teeth. As clients X &Y prove above, the saving grace is a PR firm that specialises in digital communication, and can be trusted to take said secrets to the grave, because nothing spreads quite like scandal.