A short leap from good PR into the fire

I started getting phone calls from a certain BI bigshot’s public relations firm after I mentioned his firm in a story. The woman who called every few weeks seemed too sweet for the job, but some days any friendly voice gets in. I always talked to her but always held her off.

Then someone else took over who wasn’t so sweet, and somehow she got through to an editor who asked if I could deal with her.

Her winning ploy was email that promised a “surprising prediction” about the mid-market.

The hour for our chat arrived. After 10 minutes of get-to-know-you chatter, I tried to pull us onto the subject. I thoguht the prediction might gush forth, but he had nothing.

He hadn’t even read the email sent on his behalf. I had to read it to him.

Finally, he said something interesting. He said Microsoft would provide the BI mid-market with its version of a BI Google. It would be simple like Google and just as revolutionary.

Really?, I said. Are we talking about Microsoft? I’ve only seen it imitate. Can they innovate? Google has established a culture of innovation, and Microsoft has shown no sign of any.

Well, said the expert, obviously thinking as he spoke… if they can imitate they can imitate Google’s culture of innovation.

What’s a PR rep to do? Send the client to PR boot camp? Have a heart to heart chat? Tell the client to take his unworthy ass somewhere else? Or was this the PR rep’s failure? Hard to tell.

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