Modern public relations people often don’t understand how the media works. Many don’t get journalism.
This wasn’t a problem in the past when most PR people were ex-journalists. Today, many publicists have never seen the inside of an editorial office.
Or if they have, they haven’t seen how editors and journalist work. They know little about what makes journalists tick. What motivates and drives reporters and editors.
Harmful PR failures
As a result many PR people end up harming their client’s chances of getting publicity. Or at least the right publicity. Instead they get in the way of journalists and annoy editors.
Which is where Dan Kaufman’s Dealing with grumpy editors gets its name. To public relations people journalists often appear grumpy, rude and obstructive.
This should not surprise anyone. You wouldn’t believe some of the nonsense editors have to put up with from PR people. Some of that nonsense passes for wisdom or craft in the PR industry.
Rubbish public relations
After 17 years before the editorial masthead Kaufman has seen some rubbish PR. He has also seen some sharp operators. In this book he provides practical advice for communications workers wanting to get an editor’s attention.
If you work in PR, you may not agree with everything Kaufman says. He tells it like it is in straightforward language. It is a valuable work, worth every cent of the ridiculously low $4.99 he is charging for the PDF version.
I can come to your offices – or meet you in a fancy restaurant – and give you the same advice for $150 an hour. So on second thoughts, don’t buy the book. Hire me instead.
In the spirit of good journalism, I should disclose my connection with Kaufman. I hired him as a junior journalist some 17 years or so ago. Hopefully he wasn’t thinking of me when he gave his book its title.