Can you buy your way to PR fame?…Take time out to read this article by Gavin O’Malley of Adage.com.
The article covers the recent survey results released by PRWeek and PR agency Manning Selvage & Lee which revealed a startling amount of marketing executives who have purchased editorial brand content. What that means in the most simplest terms is that in some publications or broadcast outlets, marketers have been able to secure what a reader might perceive as an article, when really it’s commercial content for the product and it’s been purchased by the marketer.
Here’s an excerpt from the O’Malley’s article –
“Survey: 48.9% of Marketing Execs Have Paid for Placement in Content
Half of Those Who Haven’t Say They Would If Given the Chance
By Gavin O’Malley
Published: June 14, 2006
NEW YORK (AdAge.com) — Something’s rotten with the state of media. Nearly half — 48.9% — of senior marketing executives admit to paying for editorial or broadcast brand placement, according to an industrywide survey just released by PRWeek and PR agency Manning Selvage & Lee.”
These results underscore the challenge to keeping editorial and marketing separate in publications and broadcast, and the ever-increasing pressure to capitulate to the highest bidder. I can tell you that I know of no reputable journalists or editors who would let a marketing executive dictate their content or article.
Most of us journalists balk when an interviewee or marketer or PR person asks to review an article prior to print, let alone to try to help you “craft” the content.
My advice in response to this survey, is for companies to keep in mind that the key to long-term respect and longevity as well as garnering good coverage is to take what more and more seems to be the “road less traveled.”
To quote Robert Frost:
“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.”
So I urge you to make your way in the business forest by taking the road less traveled and building your credibility one REAL news item at a time. It’s the road less traveled, but it’s well worth the trip!