Only a few days ago in Rome Kevin Roberts, the global Ceo of Saatchi, addressing a professionally mature corporate audience, said something like ‘ the most dramatic change which is disrupting the advertising markets is that we are now required to develop relationships with customers’.
Sir Martin Sorrell , Ceo of WPP, said more or less the same about one year ago in New York.
Yet, a few public relators professionals and scholars -although conceding that the communicating-with mode might be more effective than the communicating-to one when dealing with corporate related issues- claim, in what they define as integrated marketing communication, that the at or to modes prevail because they are more effective.
This, in my view, is a sign of miopia or, at the very least, simple stubborness in not conceding to reality.
In any public relations program -be it corporate or marketing oriented- there are always phases which require outreach activities (i.e communicating-to).
Similarly, the framework and mid term aims which guide any organization’s communicative activities -be it corporate or marketing oriented- need today to be relationship driven for all the good reasons (and more) that this blog has been arguing over these years.
I have much curiosity in better understanding the motives of all those colleagues out there who refuse to accept this fact of life, beyond the ‘we have always done it this way’ and the ‘we have never done it this other way’ syndrome acutely posted here by Bill Brody
You can dance around words, bury the gurus, overhype their presumed abstractness, invent new contraptions…. but when even the least likely of advertising thinkers and doers say now what some public relators have been saying for 120 years, many others repeatedly for the last 25 years, and some of the younger ones for only a few years, but simply because they seem to believe the world was created by the digitalization of society…. even the die hards should embrace the frontier which is now wide open to us:
that of gsrg (global stakeholder relationship governance)….and this is new draft of gsrg….at least for the time being….
Take every single one of Bill Huey’s roles for the public relator he ironically derives from the confusion he claims public relations thinkers have been producing in what instead (I believe..) is the most fruitful and dynamic period of enrichment of our body of knowledge coming from all continents… and if you analyse the required skills and competencies needed for each…you will find ,first, significant overlappings as well as, secondly, striking similarities with those which were discussed here some time ago and to which Bill also contributed.
Of course if you compare those required skills and competencies with the curricula of studies which are going on just about everywhere…but this is yet another argument…or is it?