Dev Patnaik on PR and partial credit
Last night I attended the West Coast launch party for Dev Patnaik’s new book Wired to Care. In the book, Patnaik, CEO of growth...
Last night I attended the West Coast launch party for Dev Patnaik’s new book Wired to Care. In the book, Patnaik, CEO of growth strategy firm Jump Associates, argues the secret to connecting with customers is to be empathetic. By this his means rely less on power points and market research data. Instead companies should use intuition and gut instincts to get a sense for what their customers want. It sounds like what PR – at its best – should be able to do. When I asked Patnaik, who is working with Peppercom to promote the book, about this he said, the problem is so many companies don’t trust their gut.
“It’s like when you’re in college and you don’t know the right answer on the essay question,” he said. “You write for pages and pages in the blue book hoping to at least score partial credit. But the smart guy who knows the answer, comes in writes one page and is done. Too often PR puts out so many messages hoping to get partial credit, hoping that maybe one of those messages will stick.”
He also contends, empathy helps companies move their bottom lines. Shouldn’t this help communications have a proverbial seat at the c-suite?
“Absolutely,” he said. “Most CEOs feel so powerless and chained to [Wall street]. So they need a PR person – or a communications professional – to come in and help them with resonance.”
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