10 Mistakes to Ensure your PR Campaign Fails

by | Jun 30, 2023 | B2B PR Blog, Opinion, PR Campaign Planning

Some behaviours foster greatness while others smother potential. In this blog we take a light hearted look at some behaviours that will accelerate the failure of your public relations team.

We’ve been very fortunate enough to have very rarely come across these attributes – certainly never all in one place, could you imagine!

So, if you’re sitting comfortably, let’s look at our bad batch of B2B PR banana skins:

1 Cultivate a Blame Game Culture:

The blame game is an underrated gem when it comes to ensuring PR failures. As a leader, deflect responsibility at every turn. Attribute every setback to external factors, imaginary foes, or even the alignment of the planets. Avoid accountability like it’s the plague and watch as your team becomes disenchanted, your reputation crumbles, and your PR endeavors turn into a never-ending circus act.

2 Embrace the “Ostrich Approach”

Picture this: you’re a leader responsible for PR success, and the most foolproof strategy is to bury your head in the sand like a curious ostrich. Ignore customer feedback, social media conversations, and industry trends. After all, who needs external input when you can single-handedly determine what your target audience wants, right? Embrace this approach and watch as your PR efforts crumble like a stale cookie.

3 Adopt the “Doomsday Prophecies” Narrative:

To truly ensure PR fails spectacularly, be the harbinger of doom and gloom. Paint a bleak picture of your brand, constantly highlighting worst-case scenarios. Inspire despair in your team and customers alike, leaving them wondering why they ever supported your business in the first place. Remember, nothing says “public relations disaster” like a leader who constantly predicts the imminent collapse of their own company.

4 Ignore Stakeholder Communication:

In the magical land of PR failures, effective communication with stakeholders is an archaic practice. Disregard the opinions, concerns, and expectations of your investors, employees, and customers. Treat their voices like pesky little gnats buzzing around your head. Show them how irrelevant they truly are and watch as your PR efforts crumble faster than a sandcastle at high tide.

5 Master the Art of Inconsistency:

Consistency is overrated! Be a leader who changes your brand’s messaging on a whim, confusing even the most loyal customers. Keep them on their toes, never knowing what to expect. One day, you’re a quirky startup catering to millennials; the next day, you’re a stuffy corporation with a focus on the elderly. With this approach, you’ll witness your PR strategy collapse into a whirlwind of confusion and disappointment.

6 Communicate in Riddles and Rhymes:

To ensure your public relations agency stumbles into the depths of confusion, master the art of communication in riddles and rhymes. Speak in cryptic messages that require an ancient map and a decoder ring to decipher. This way, your agency will spend more time scratching their heads than crafting strategic campaigns. After all, who needs clarity when you can have a puzzle party?

7 Embrace the Micro-Management Monster:

What better way to ensure your PR agency fails than by unleashing the dreaded micro-management monster? Breathe down your team’s necks, scrutinise every word in their press releases, and demand hourly updates on their coffee breaks. Remember, trust is overrated! The key is to suffocate creativity and squash the agency’s morale like a pancake on a hot griddle.

8 Make Scope Creep a Team Pursuit:

Who needs a clear project scope when you can embrace the wild ride of scope creep. Keep changing the project requirements, add new objectives on a whim, and expect your PR agency to magically deliver on unrealistic expectations. With this approach, you’ll witness deadlines slipping away and confusion reigning supreme. It’s like a never-ending game of “Chase the Moving Target.”

9 Pay in Monopoly Money:

… or pay late if you want to guarantee your PR agency’s demise. Watch their disbelief and frustration grow as they try to deposit colorful fake bills at the bank. Show them how money can’t buy happiness, but it can surely buy failure. Remember, you want them chasing overdue invoices not press coverage, right?

10 Keep Secrets like a Pro Spy:

The best leaders know how to keep their PR agency in the dark. Share important information on a “need-to-know” basis, where no one ever needs to know. Leave your agency guessing, stumbling in the dark like blindfolded trapeze artists. After all, why have a well-informed team when you can have a team of secret agents in disconnected silos?

Eliminate PR Errors with Effective Leadership

I hope you’ve enjoyed our lighthearted detour into the world of leadership-driven PR disasters and how to sabotage your PR agency. Although this whimsical adventure was partly for entertainment – it puts into sharp focus the importance of effective leadership and ensuring your relationship with your PR agency succeeds.

True leaders empower their teams, encourage open communication, and foster a culture of accountability. They listen to their stakeholders, adapt to market trends, and ensure consistent messaging that resonates with their target audience.

Effective leadership is also about nurturing strong relationships, fostering trust, and empowering your PR agency to succeed. Embrace these principles and you’ll build a strong and enduring relationship with your PR agency and a robust foundation for PR triumphs while bolstering your brand’s reputation.

So, let’s focus on cultivating leadership practices that uplift our organisations. Remember, stay inspired, stay authentic, and let’s use our instinct to be distinct.

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