Many home pages for search engines will have their “top” lists. For example. Yahoo.com has “Today’s Top Searches.” At the bottom of this posting is a listing for their top searches for the week when Wall Street melted down.
First, I look at this list and can’t say that I understand the logic of what made the list. First of all, Holly Madison is a well, how do you say it, a porn star. Perhaps all the men whose financial portfolios are down needed a lift and searched for Holly.
Second, while I’m glad that mortgage rates made the list, it’s at the bottom. Perhaps people believe that mortgages are still possible for the unfortunate souls who were taken advantage of when given mortgages they could not afford once they were adjusted.
My point is that the “top story” or “search” in someones mind is very subjective. Right now my wife and I are looking for a home, so Holly Madison or Christie Brinkley are the names I would be searching for. And besides my wife would not approve.
Over the years, many top lists are made to help sway public opinion on what’s “the best” and what’s “number one.” The bottom line for public relations is what’s most important for the audiences that you are targeting with an important message that will mean something personal to them.
On, I think I know what law schools made this list. With new lawyers in Chicago starting at $160,000 right out of school, it’s a great career to consider for everyone who has lost money in the stock market this week.
When I was a child there was the expression from bullies, “Your ass is grass.” I never quite understood the logic. I assume it meant that the other person would mow you down. For a while it seemed that the New York Stock Exchange was about to mow down it’s former CEO.
I was reading a story in PR Week about Richard Grasso (former CEO of the New York Stock Exchange) and his public relations strategy. A plan that included saying almost nothing to the media as he was being sued to return his $139.5 million retirement package. (Note to NYSE, I’d be happy with just the $ .5 million part, so consider me for CEO down the road).
His only major “comment” to the media during the case was providing an op-ed piece that was published in the Wall Street Journal. His publicist, Eric Starkman, felt that with the wave of negative publicity against his Grasso, there was no way to turn the tide…until the case was played out in court, and not the court of public opinion.
It worked. Grasso kept the money and get the last laugh with that piggy bank breaking retirement plan (my dad got a nice pin after 35 years at the American Can Company and a reasonable retirement package).
This makes me smile because, while agencies like ours love to help our legal clients win in the court of public opinion, sometimes you can win by keeping your mouth shut.