Confessions of a PR Man

Confessions of a PR Man

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Wood, Robert J. | Gunther, Max New American Library, 1989
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IN THIS SUMMARY

Wood recounts his first foray into major PR activity when he was in the U.S. Air Force in 1945. The story shows why he became interested in PR and illustrates three important characteristics of the profession: 1) the "sheer fun", 2) the risks that can enhance the fun, and 3) its effectiveness. When all is said and done, it is the people and their skills that make for successful PR. It is particularly important that all job applicants be thoroughly screened for requisite skills, including writing skills and some form of media experience. If not done, this negligence can come back to haunt you, as it did for Byoir when handling an account for Arthur Andersen and Company. The scope and effectiveness of PR is the focus of this chapter. The lead story is about successfully overcoming "the mightiest of opponents"-in this case, AT&T's bid to reestablish a monopoly in the mid-1970s. Wood also suggests that there are times when PR can be cheaper and more effective than advertising. He illustrates this with stories about promoting Jane Russell's first movie and the campaign to make people aware of aspirin's record in helping to prevent heart attacks.