The PRV Report Card: This Week’s Winners & Losers

 The PRV Report Card: This Weeks Winners & LosersPR WINNER OF THE WEEK: “A” (PR PERFECT) to the International Association to Save Tyre, a charitable organization that came up with a most innovative fundraiser: a raffle to win a Picasso. Sotheby’s Paris will host the drawing, in which one lucky ticket holder will win Picasso’s “Man With Opera Hat,” a cubist illustration valued at $1 million dollars. Tickets are available online, worldwide, for $135/€100. After the publicity the raffle received, it’s a cinch the ceiling of 50,000 available tickets will be met, bringing in a raft of donations and awareness in this artfully crafted fundraiser.

 The PRV Report Card: This Weeks Winners & LosersPR LOSER OF THE WEEK: “F” (FULL FIASCO) to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who committed an uncharacteristic PR misstep this week. Christie told The Record, a NJ newspaper, that a “low-level manager” at NJ Transit was responsible for deciding to move more than 300 trains to a facility that wound up flooding during Hurricane Sandy last year, causing more than $100 million in damage. The governor suggested that the manager went rogue and didn’t properly vet his decision within the transportation agency. The call-out alone would have been bad enough, but it turns out that The Record has emails showing that this poor unfortunate’s decision was, indeed, approved by more than a dozen supervisors, including the agency director. Bad intel and poor form, governor.

kochs The PRV Report Card: This Weeks Winners & Losers

THE PRV “THERE’S NO ‘THERE’ THERE” AWARD to Charles and David Koch, for denying any role in the anti-Obamacare government shutdown but not disavowing the Republican-led effort. The conservative billionaire brothers, who bankroll numerous right-wing causes, figured prominently in a Sunday New York Times article  that traced how Koch-funded conservative groups and politicians plotted the shutdown strategy to block the Affordable Care Act. On Wednesday, in a blanket letter to US Senators, the Kochs said although they oppose Obamacare, they had “not taken a position” on the shutdown strategy nor lobbied Congress to defund the program. So in other words, they’re not to blame for a shutdown, which they have no opinion on, anyway.

 

 

P

Photos Well Worth a Thousand Words

This week, as we prepare to break for the holidays, we ‘re taking a look at the PR moments that made a difference in 2012. The power of one strong picture is underestimated in the PR world; sometimes one visual is all that’s needed to convey a message. If a picture can say a thousand words, a photo can also shape a thousand words.

Here are three photos that proved the point.

Chrischristie obamajpg 150x150 Photos Well Worth a Thousand WordsBoth President Barack Obama and Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey have their stalwart fans and detractors. But this photo, taken immediately following Hurricane Sandy, helped change the conversation about the need for bipartisanship. The American electorate paused; maybe respectful discussion and co-operation is possible after all? There were lessons in this photo for both parties, and its importance resurfaces as the fiscal cliff deadline approaches.

 

 

katieholeselle 150x150 Photos Well Worth a Thousand WordsNo slinking around in the shadows for Katie Holmes as she announced her divorce from Tom Cruise. Gracing the cover of Elle Magazine while simultaneously announcing her divorce from Tom Cruise, this cover girl made it clear it she was not the victim in the divorce. Clever strategy, or a happy coincidence? In the end, it doesn’t matter. The tone was set: Holmes one point, Cruise none.

 

 

 

QueenOO71 150x136 Photos Well Worth a Thousand WordsHard to believe, but only a decade ago the Queen was having her own PR Problems. Out of touch, cold, frosty, and humorless were the persistent complaints. How things have changed! Jumping out of helicopter with James Bond served her well during the opening ceremony of the Olympics. The stunt caught the headlines; some even asked, Was it really her? In the end, not only did royal PR benefit but the helicopter shot also served as a welcome distraction to a puzzling and eccentric Opening Olympic Ceremony that had many scratching their heads.

 

 

 

A Serious Storm, A Simple (and Effective) Message

OB VD264 obamaf G 20121028145952 150x150 A Serious Storm, A Simple (and Effective) Message

The PR Verdict: “B” (Good Show) for a President’s speech that reassured and activated.

Hurricane Sandy has managed to do the unthinkable in terms of media coverage: moved the last ten days of electioneering off the front page and turned national attention toward disaster recovery. President Obama joined the conversation on Monday morning, and with a coupe of clearly honed messages at a hastily-convened press conference, he made the transition from electioneering President to President in Charge.

Obama’s short speech is worth watching for anyone wanting to know how to craft a simple message. What started off with a slightly wordy and lengthy introduction soon became clear. Yes, preparations were in place and the East Coast was as ready as it could be, but the main takeaway? “Listen to what officials are saying – this is a serious storm.”

Obama’s speech was designed to reassure, and to manage expectations. He flagged the  inevitable issues that will arise post-storm, including long-running power outages and transportation delays. But the main lesson from the speech is that reassuring the public that everything’s under control is not enough; a call to action is needed and grabs attention. Getting the public directly involved takes the conversation to a higher level of engagement.

The PR Verdict: “B” (Good Show) for a President’s speech that reassured and activated.

The PR Takeaway: To get the public’s attention, give the public something to do. President Obama’s speech included a roll call of what was intended to reassure a nervous public. What made the difference was clear instruction. Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani made a similar speech following September 11, when he asked New Yorkers to go back to their lives, the streets, and shopping. A call to action from someone in authority got attention then, as it does now.