The Bankwatch

Tracking the consumer evolution of financial services

MESH07 | Richard Edelman

First keynote conversation, was with Richard Edelman. No surprise, but he is very quotable, and he also struck me as quite pragmatic in his views.

His biggest hate is for spin. He talked a lot about the importance of transparency. he spoke frankly about the Walmart fiasco, when, if i remember right, Edelman staff were found to be ghost blogging supposed Walmart customers. He sees the HQ role as one of standards and training, and encourages all 2,500 staff to be engaged in social media.

One of his main points, was to encourage companies not to leave the social media to the “anti’s”. Get engaged in the conversations, challenge where you think the “anti’s” are wrong and support them when you believe they are right. But recognise this will require changes inside your company, and be prepared for those.

His three takeaways to PR folks in the audience:
– make your stories visual
– dont let yourself become defeatist
– don’t let clients force you into a box

Some quotes:

– “Public Relations is about telling a story well”
– “runway of trust’
– “get companies to give up control of the message”
– “trade-off between control and credibity”; example “Dove campaign”

Written by Colin Henderson

May 31, 2007 at 09:47

Posted in Marketing

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