Flack on Friday: Gin o'clock, karma 'comedian', PR in a Car, trust vs truth

In Flack this week: a lesson in schadenfreude, a measure of gin, PRrrr in a Carrr and mummy bloggers get lyrical lashing.

Flack on Friday: Gin o'clock, karma 'comedian', PR in a Car, trust vs truth

Gin o'clock?

PRWeek's inaugural Measurement Conference this week offered many fascinating insights - thanks to everyone involved for making it such a success. However, Flack can't help thinking some people's minds were drifting towards the festive party season.

Take this tweet from one attendee on seeing a couple of innocent looking bottles of water:

Later, in a session about brand and reputation objectives, panelists were asked what's on their Christmas list regarding measurement. Citypress director of research & analysis Marianne Morgan revealed that at a recent training event, she asked 20 PRs what proportion of their time each month is spent thinking about measurement.

"The answer was about one per cent. I wouldn't mind them thinking two per cent of their time about measurement - and I wouldn't mind a bottle of gin as well."

Let's hope Santa gets the memo.

PRrrr in a carrr

One of the highlights of Flack’s week was stumbling across PR in a Car (only ever to be said in a West Country accent) – a new idea from Radioactive PR founder and owner Rich Leigh.

Less James Cordon in Carpool Karaoke, more Tom Hardy in Locke (you can thank us later, Rich), the format is a podcast-style video recorded while Leigh clocks up the miles required to meet London clients when your agency is based in Gloucester.

As Radioactive reaches its 5th anniversary, Leigh opens up candidly about the highs and lows of starting and running a business from scratch, touching on the agency’s innovative four-day week policy and stressing the importance of a mental reset – hence the ‘Day Zero’ title of the first episode. He also covers what he learned from playing and coaching rugby, employee happiness, some exciting plans for the next five years, and plenty more.

He ends by musing that "maybe this is a really fucking stupid idea" – well Flack doesn’t think so, Rich, so please keep going!

Poetic license in the world of influencers

Influencers: love them or loathe them, they are now firmly part of the campaigning mix, from consumer comms through to public affairs.

What was an industry buzzword has, inevitably, become part of the mainstream.

While scanning the social-media landscape this week, Flack discovered a poet who had taken influencers as her subject, or perhaps target, and the result was 13 scathing stanzas on how the ‘mummy-blogger’ brigade had sold out:

"Feel free to unfollow (translation: Fuck off). Lets sever the affiliated links betwen us like an umbilical cord" Ouch!

Truth vs trust

Flack has been told that Manifest held an interesting talk by behavioural scientists Steve Martin and Joseph Marks about whether messengers are more important than message – which is timely in the run up to a general election.

Aside from one annoying hack – fuelled by cava from a kettle, no doubt – asking far too many questions, Flack understands the event was 'thought-provoking', and drinks afterwards 'thought-numbing'.

The scientists discussed a study in which one of the conclusions was that trust is often more important than truth. 

For example, Trump supporters trust he will build a fence on the border with Mexico and that he represents their anti-establishment world view, which is more important to them than the fact that he lies like a trooper. 

Martin and Marks have a new book out called Messengers: Who We Listen To, Who we Don’t and Why.

Pride comes before...

Flack had a moment of premature schadenfreude this week.

Attending the launch of the PRCA Digital PR and Communications Report in London, the individual (who shall remain nameless) giving the introduction appeared to accidentally knock over a microphone on approach to the lectern, causing it to fall to the floor.

"You're supposed to drop the mic at the end of your speech," blurted out this uncaring hack, shamefully.

Two days later, at the PRWeek Measurement Conference, an admin slip (for which Flack takes blame) meant the panelists on a session about influencer marketing were left outside the room when called onto the stage, leaving panel chair and PRWeek UK editor John Harrington awkwardly trying to fill time before their arrival.

Karma can be cruel.


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