My top favorite pastime is being a professional mentor of high school robotics team where I live, just a short ferry ride from downtown Seattle on Bainbridge Island. It’s a FIRST Robotics Team (4915 Spartronics) that I helped found six years ago. I’m the lead marketing mentor.
One of the mantra’s we have taught each student on the team as they go through the program is “Everyone’s a marketer.”
That quote really captures the importance of the business side of the robotics team. Marketing impacts everyone on the team. It is vital to the team’s success and sustainability for many reasons, the biggest one is the team is self-funding.
Each season requires as much as $50,000 in fundraising. When the team goes to the Worlds Competition, which it has done three of its first five years, funding needs and go even higher.
But new students who are on the programming, electrical and mechanical teams are dubious of our mantra. Until they realize it is what literally what puts the team shirt on their backs, food in their bellies (we often meet in the evening and feed them dinner), the tools in their hands and pays for the parts to build that robot.
This past week I was involved with a couple of terrific announcements with clients that both were an enormous success. It reminded me of how awesome and powerful great Public Relations and the publicity it generates can be.
And I have been doing professional Public Relations for more than a couple of decades. Yet still once and a while I am taken aback at how incredibly powerful PR can be. So, if I can still be surprised at what PR can do, it made me realize how many people in our industry forget, or neglect, to incorporate PR into their Marketing plans and programs
With the new year upon the horizon, don’t take my word for it. People a lot smarter than me have made some very acute observations about my profession.
Here are some quotes about the PR profession, to help you reflect on what PR is, does and the importance of PR:
“The counsel on public relations is not an advertising man but he advocates for advertising where that is indicated. Very often he is called in by an advertising agency to supplement its work on behalf of a client. His work and that of the advertising agency do not conflict with or duplicate each other.” – Edward Bernays, known as the “Father of Public Relations”
“If I was down to the last dollar of my marketing budget, I’d spend it on PR.” – Bill Gates
“Publicity is absolutely critical. A good PR story is inﬁnitely more effective than a front page ad.” – Richard Branson
“Advertising is saying you’re good. PR is getting someone else to say you’re good.” Jean-Louis Grassee, Founder BeOS
“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and 5 minutes to ruin it.” – Warren Buffett“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing about.” – Ben Franklin
“Publicity, publicity, publicity is the greatest moral factor and force in our public life.” – Joseph Pulitzer
“What kills a skunk is the publicity it gives itself.” – Abraham Lincoln
“If you don’t tell your story, someone else will.” – Michael Sitrick, Author & Crisis PR expert
“Next to doing the right thing, the most important thing is to let people know you are doing the right thing.” – John D. Rockefeller
“There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that’s not being talked about.” -Oscar Wilde
“In a downturn, aggressive PR and communications strategy is key.” – Doug Leone, VC, Sequoia Capital – Silicon Alley Insider
“Nobody counts the number of ads you run; they just remember the impression you make.” – Bill Bernbach, advertising pioneer and founder of DDB
“Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some hire public relations officers.” – Daniel J. Boorstin, Historian
“If a young man tells his date how handsome, smart and successful he is – that’s advertising. If the young man tells his date she’s intelligent, looks lovely, and is a great conversationalist, he’s saying the right things to the right person and that’s marketing. If someone else tells the young woman how handsome, smart and successful her date is – that’s PR.” – S. H. Simmons
“Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.” – Rudyard Kipling
A Final Thought for 2019
If you need to add PR to your Marketing planning next year or want WAV Group Communications to audit the effectiveness of your current external communications program, reach out to us. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Let’s talk.