Rant: How you can showcase how you don’t understand the basics of online PR or web 2.0


Now you may know that I can be something of a contrarian when it comes to all the unbridled excitement you often find associated with “Web 2.0” but let’s park that for the moment. 

If you’re thinking about starting a blog then it’s probably a good idea to do a quick search and discover some useful tips on how to start it, sustain it, promote it.

The basics are pretty easy.  You should probably write about something that you’re interested in, you should be aware that it requires an investment of time, and if you want to get connected then jump in, read other blogs, link to them, comment on things that you find interesting etc. etc..

It does take time, but it’s really not terribly hard.

Of course there is an alternative. 

Start a blog and then pretend that you are far too important to bother wasting your time with the other little bloggers, so rather than getting in touch with them yourself, you get one of your minions to promote your blog for you.

This is the opening of an e-mail I received today:

This blog (the blog his boss writes) is an amazing resource for anyone who works in public relations, who is interested in learning more about developments in this field, or who wants to benefit from the entrepreneurial and aggressive spirit of –name deleted- and –agency name deleted-.  For someone like yourself who maintains a blog about the public relations industry and communications and media trends, –name deleted-‘s blog would offer your readers an insider’s perspective that they undoubtedly would appreciate.

It continues:

The rapid growth of –agency name deleted- was made possible by –name deleted-’s aggressive, results focused orientation and his close relationships with members of the media, key influencers, decision makers, politicians and celebrities.  Under –name deleted-‘s leadership, –agency name deleted- has used its aggressive and committed talent to represent clients including –poor distressed client list deleted-.  These client experiences, combined with –agency name deleted-’s status as a full-service public relation firm maintaining practice areas in consumer, technology, health and wellness, entertainment, lifestyle, fashion and corporate communications, make –name deleted-’s blog an excellent resource.

–name deleted- is so busy with “his aggressive, results focused orientation”, that he couldn’t be bothered actually taking a few minutes to understand how this internet thingy works. He clearly doesn’t understand the very basics of engaging with people online and I wouldn’t link to his site at risk of death.

Interestingly I did visit his blog to have a look and you’ll be relieved to know that I didn’t see any “insider’s perspective that you undoubtedly would appreciate”.

You won’t be surprised to hear that the poor intern tasked with hyping the blog doesn’t understand the whole blog relations thing either.

(Aside: I wonder is this task the 21st century equivalent of being forced by your boss to ring and ask a journalist had they received the press release, like we were in the old days?)

Thanks for the spam.

Tell your boss thanks for his time.

And I won’t be linking to him.