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Can You Handle the Truth…

I firmly believe that we can look at PR and the media through a different lense – we can do it differently  – it is not about the numbers – it is about speaking the truth, building connections through being authentic, and trusting that if the story you are communicating is meant to be shared […]

I firmly believe that we can look at PR and the media through a different lense – we can do it differently  – it is not about the numbers – it is about speaking the truth, building connections through being authentic, and trusting that if the story you are communicating is meant to be shared ‘THAT is the Strategy’ – then it will be shared at the right time, in the right way and to the right people.

When a client is 100% engaged in their truth, and are sharing their story, in an authentic way the coverage and opportunities do come – when the time is right.

I’ve always been like it – I always just knew when someone was trying to pull over my eyes – when some one had told me a white lie or a whopper. I just felt it in my bones. I used to confront people at first – then I’d get ‘gaslighted’ by friends, family, partners.  I also felt it when I worked in corporate communications – I’d know when ‘stuff was afoot’ doors would shut and the energy would change. I’d know when a team mate was spinning their response to suit the boss, or when I’d chase up a colleague to see if they had done something I had asked them to do, I’d know they where feeding me a line or fake smiling.

You see that’s the trouble (!) with being intuitive, the niggle in the gut that was telling me loud and clear – not to date that guy, not to swallow the line, not to believe that I was ‘mental’ or ‘off my rocker’.  And then when you stop listening to the niggle… tune it out if you will, you end up believing the bullshit. You buy into it… the marketers dream – you want to become thinner, younger, have the latest ‘thing’. Ever figured out that they don’t want you to listen to the niggle…

So, something happened. I woke up. I realised that the world was full of it – Bullshit. 

Which is pretty hard for someone who works in public relations and the media.

I’ve been in the business for half my life – we are known as dolly birds, those that play with glitter and drink copious amounts of champagne. Sure. I am not afraid to say it I was one of the worst for playing to the crowd.

So, PR’s – Pretty little spin doctors at best, liars at worst?

We dress it up as ‘strategy’.

We come in and fight the fires – when products f*** up and nearly kill people – with clever holding statements.

And when it becomes painful – you no longer believe in the product; the perks outweigh the day job or you are just in it to pay the mortgage. Worst still when the ‘truth’ comes out… well that’s just the end of the world isn’t it.

What if the media were interested in the truth – and by that – I mean in its purest form?

Skeletons in the closet, finding out where the bodies are buried, and our shadow side is generally more appealing sadly – it makes for a better story – one that’s fuelled with gossip and ego. We hype up the atrocities – you can’t scroll or watch the news with out misery and fear spewing from within.

People like me – super sensitivities – can’t actually watch this stuff without getting emotional, and as for our children when watching adverts that sell them the ideal is it any wonder we grow up ‘wanting’ all the time. The energy is all consuming and whether it is known or not it is consciously keeping us in fear.  In fear of not being perfect, not being authentic, not being true, not being enough.

There are  some influencers and celebs who are starting to notice this and are quietly blazing the trail to change our world – they use the press as a mouthpiece to communicate their message effectively, as and when they need to – they make noises about the truth – gagging orders are becoming a thing of the past, #metoo is making sure of that. But its not enough.

We should all be searching for the truth – listening to the feeling in the pit of our stomachs – tuning into what we react and see on social media, the television or consume in print form.

If we are all spinning shit – whether it’s about the latest piece of technology or a beauty product that will make you young – when will we ever get to the truth?

I love the NETFLIX show ‘The Good Place’ – without spoiling too much it raised an interesting point. That the world has become too complicated. If you wanted to live your best life, then there where always unseen factors that could prevent you from being a ‘good’ person – which essentially means no one is getting in to the good place.

How many unseen factors do you think we come across in the media? Or even marketing?

It’s not just the media either, I get so frustrated with coaches promoting and teaching stuff they only learnt five minutes ago, promising you that you are going to earn a 6-figure salary in 5 minutes. Of course, it didn’t take them 5 minutes to do that – it is most likely it took a lot of hard graft, late nights and coaches who have helped them. Why can’t we just come clean about that – there is no shame in that really! And I’d like to point out I am not coming from a place of ego, here I am genuinely concerned for the clients that sign up to this stuff believing they’ll get what has been promised in the Facebook ad.   

I am no doubt ruffling plenty of feathers amongst my PR/Media/Marketing comrades – who I happen know to be the hardest working people I know – always on the hamster wheel, 24/7, fixing, repairing, hustling, cutting through red tape, pushing, proving themselves, and then moving on to the next.

Another way?

I firmly believe that we can look at PR and the media through a different lense –- we can do it differently  – it is not about the numbers – it is not about AVE – it is about speaking the truth, building connections through being authentic, and trusting that if the story you are communicating is meant to be shared ‘THAT is the Strategy’ – then it will be shared at the right time, in the right way and to the right people.

I am proof that this method does work.

When a client is 100% engaged in their truth, and are sharing their story, in an authentic way the coverage and opportunities do come – when the time is right.

One of my authors appeared in a national newspaper telling her story, not once but twice. The first time was at the beginning of her book journey, the second piece came exactly a year after the first piece in a national newspaper again – which reignited interest and helped to sell more of her books – the timing worked out perfectly because she was in the right head space to talk about her book, she was ready so the opportunities appeared.

I have noticed, if clients are not invested at a soul level or even engaged the opportunities disappear, go on hold, or get quieter – where the energy is refocused on something else – once we refocus and reset the intention, then opportunities flow again. It really is very interesting to witness… I often sit and tune into each client to see where I should focus my efforts. I find this is gives me actual results and I make several calls that result in positive feedback over wasting days of chasing people that don’t want to engage. 

Everything else is just too hard. If you are finding yourself pushing, then stop. Find another way.

Listen and refocus.

The same is true in life as in PR.

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