Tom Murphy – Murphy's Law

Tom Murphy blogging about PR and other things since 2002…

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Waking up to find your career is gone…

December 11th, 2007 · 7 Comments · Public Relations

I’ve been a little busy recently, which has meant that poor FeedDemon is bursting at the seams [and causing me "Unread RSS-feed stress disorder" or UNRED].

However, far more distressing than unread RSS feeds, it appears that in the couple of weeks I have been less than attentive to the blogosphere, my career has disappeared.

Apparently PR is dead or dying.

Gasp.

Hold on… something about that theme is familiar. 

Oh yes, now I know. People have been saying it over and over and over again for years and years and years. [Here's a post from three years ago.]

You know what though?

To everyone’s disgust, we’re still here.

Hello world. 

I work in Public Relations and myself and my colleagues aren’t dead.  In fact I don’t think we’re even feeling unwell.

I think I will write a press release, print it off, put it in an envelope and send it by post.  Then to round off the day I’ll go and talk to someone in person. I am so old-worlde…

New meme

I’ve tried to avoid the dead word but it simply won’t die, so in the interest of going with the flow, my new meme is:

"Bloggers talking off the top of their heads are Dead"

Unfortunately life is never that simple (or enjoyable) but one must fight fire with fire.

Anyhow hopefully I’ll have a job until Christmas, but if the bloggers are right it’ll be touch and go. [Apologies to my family in advance]

Some links to "PR is Dead" meme:

 

My favourite:

 

Now that’s the Christmas spirit….

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7 Comments so far ↓

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  • Paddy

    I had a really interesting debate with two guys in Marketing the other day, they were saying simular things to what you raised.

    I dont think they believe PR is dying, just that it will never be more than a small part of the greater marketing mix. Being a student at Leeds Met studing PR, it seems neally ever semester there are different books damming PR, Advertising, Markting that come around.

    If you watched that documentary on channel 4 the other night about the cult who predict that the world ends at midnight this sunday then there’s no real point of panicking – were all dead anyway.

  • Tom Murphy

    Paddy,

    That’s great news (I realize, should Channel 4 be right you won’t actually read this!).

    PR is part of the marketing mix, there’s nothing wrong with that. As long as PR continues to add value (online or offline) there’s a strong future for PR – in fact it could be argued that the rise in online actually presents greater opportunities than ever before.

    However, I also believe that the most successful PR campaigns are those that are supported by great marketing. It’s a combination rather than an either/or discussion – IMHO.

    Thanks
    Tom (7 hours and 15 minutes away from Armegeddon)

  • Tim Hoang

    What i think most people are saying is that ‘tradional’ Pr is dying (the quote was from Borkowski himself and i chose it by the title for a bit of dramatic effect – spin is still alive) – i.e. calling a journo, pitching him, arselicking him then sending him (or it could be a her) over a pitch, following up, arselicking a bit more and crossing your fingers and hoping it gets in to the publication. PR has always been a seperate function in most companies when really it be central to the overall marketing strategy. The blogosphere and disintermediation (see Will McInes’ blog) will change the whole relationship between organisation and audience with the middle man (the journo and therefore PR)’s role diminished. PR agencies and PROs should take note and evolve or be prepared to tread water

  • Tom Murphy

    Tim,

    I think my biggest issue with this old “traditional PR is dead” mumbo jumbo is that:
    1) At the very least it takes a myopic view of what PUBLIC Relations is – in this case media relations
    2) The assumption is made that bits and bytes are going to be the only media – and the most effective – and that change is immediate
    3) Traditional PR skills – writing, strategy, messaging, communications etc. – are not transferrable to new online channels.

    The “new” online world is a set of new tools and channels.

    Yes some demand new skills, but I believe – and nothing I’ve read to date changes my mind – that PR people will still be incredibly important – maybe even more so given the growing importance of good communication.

    And furthermore traditional media will continue to be important in the delivery of news and views to the broader population.

    This is about evolution not revolution – change not death.

    Of course I am the first to admit I don’t have all the answers – but then neither do the naysayers. At this moment in time its just opinions.

    It’ll be interesting to see how it plays out.

    Thanks
    Tom

  • Tim Hoang

    Definately Tom, and i have just started to realise that perhaps i should spend more time re reading what i write because you can’t tell context on posts – it really looks like i think i know what i’m talking about and my views are absolute to me. Hell, I’ve only been in Pr for a couple of years and this whole digital media thing i’ve only been interested for only about the same time.

    I’m a strong advocate that PR is changing hugely because if it doesn’t i’ll be just the same as every other PRO trying to cut it in PR jobs and the hours i’ve spent at night (and sunday morning before i get the train back to the big smoke) reading yours and everyone else’s blog will be wasted.

    Like I said, the orginal story was what Borkowski said in a talk, I just used it for the story i was writing because it was a good quote.

    One thing that i hope changes though is that Public Relations itself gets better PR. As communications becomes more integral in a connected world, PR will have to change the way it positions itself in order to get a seat at the ‘big table’ – to be the communications expert, not a tool used by the marketing team.

    Have a good new year Tom

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