Here is an ad that a Ukrainian firm mails to prospective clients. It’s self-explanatory, really.
SmartManager company offers:
1. Placing PR-materials in the elite pool of publications that usually decline to publish paid-for materials without marking them as advertising.
2. Placing stories in Ukrainian media (television, Internet, press, radio) on the most attractive terms.
3. Producing high quality PR texts effectively forming the public opinion without being identified as paid-for. We write with a deep knowledge of the specifics of the Ukrainian market and the local mentality.
4. Securing comments from Ukraine’s leading economists and political experts in the format required by the client.
5. Possibility of purchasing comments from leading Ukrainian politicians
6. Mitigating the effect of negative PR stories. Intercepting negative stories.
7. Monitoring the effectiveness of the impact the paid-for stories have on the position of the media.
N.B. We can publish a paid-for story without marking it as advertising in every single media outlet registered in Ukraine at very attractive prices.
Our partners include:
State government bodies
Political parties of Ukraine
No, I really must say that this generated a genuine outrage among Ukrainian PR practitioners. A lively discussion ensued in blogs and forums. I sincerely hope this is some sort of a hoax devised to disclose the unethical practices. Otherwise, I don’t really understand what is happening to the world if in 2007 people openly advertise these “services” and call them “public relations.”