The fastest way to light up the blogosphere? Write about the pain of being extremely beautiful. Guaranteed to elicit rage and vitriol, that is exactly what happened to columnist Samantha Brick who published an article in London’s Daily Mail entitled, “‘There are downsides to looking this pretty’: Why women hate me for being beautiful.” And hate they certainly do.
In her column she talked of the pain of being blessed with extraordinary looks. Samantha wrote of her gilded life as a beautiful woman, being routinely gifted free champagne, flirting with male bosses while at the same time annoying female friends and co-workers.
The Daily Mail’s website, received more than 3,000 comments in response to Brick’s cri de coeur, the vast bulk wondering out aloud if she really is as pretty as she claims. Coverage followed in multiple UK and US publications. “If you’re a woman reading this, I’d hazard that you’ve already formed your own opinion about me and it won’t be very flattering” she wrote insightfully. Sometimes any publicity is not good publicity.
The PR Verdict: “F” for “Samantha The Beautiful”. Her column, read largely by women, annoyed and upset readers. Is this any way to build a following?
First principle of PR is that it is ALWAYS better to avoid talking oneself up and instead have someone do it for you. It always has more gravitas and is less disputed. How different might the article have been if Samantha’s beauty had been verified by independent endorsement from friends and colleagues. From there Samantha and her heartbreaking story of life among the mean girls might have carried more weight. This time however she never got past first base.
What’s your PR verdict on Samantha Brick’s claim to fame?