Monday, March 21, 2011

Is All Publicity Good Publicity?


So like I said in my last post, I’m from Christchurch, New Zealand, and unfortunately there was a fairly significant quake there recently (sure, it’s not much on Japan but it’s safe to say it’s still fairly significant). While I no longer live in NZ, many of my family and friends do, they’re all physically safe but the rebuild is going to suck.

Anyway, throughout all the 24 hour news programs I watched during the following few days (and all the phone calls home!) I noticed, with little exaggeration, nearly a million messages to donate to relief funds. I doubt that any of these messages were paid for, the ticker tape at the bottom of screen constantly pointing to www.redcross.org.nz, and on that note, I just did the same (go me)!

Within 6 hours of the earthquake, an edit by the original crew of my favourite parody on the kiwi accent appeared on YouTube with an appeal to donate (with the Red Cross link on the YouTube page)


This is a lot of free publicity, and it is even nicer to see that it’s for a great cause, and has generated a lot of additional resources for the rebuild, but is all publicity good publicity?

Well we can see from the above example, an earthquake demolishing a significant part of the city, that this publicity is not going to do much good for the city, particularly from a tourism point of view (tourism marketing being my previous profession). Short term the city gets a bit of a boost to it’s coffers for the rebuild, but anyone who previously had a holiday/vacation planned there has likely cancelled and it will be removed from most everyone’s potential list of destinations.

This is made that little bit worse for the fact that Christchurch Stadium is no longer a viable stadium for the Rugby World Cup, which would have been a great kick-start to the flow of tourists.

Now you know the next time someone says that all publicity is good publicity, for the sake of educating the world one stupid thing at a time, do me a favour and explain at length why they are wrong.

Rise up Christchurch.

18 comments:

  1. A lot of publicity is good publicity, it's all about exposure so people can make their own informed decision..

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  2. always depends on whats being publicized ;D

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  3. I wouldn't say all publicity is good publicity - what about that racist chick going on a rant about asians lol. totally bad publicity

    Good read though!

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  4. Completely agree with you there Merkin, I'm all for informing people and you have to take the good with the bad.

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  5. only the good publicity is good :D

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  6. True enough. Bad publicity can equal bad reputation. Of course, some don't care, as long as there is a reputation to be had (ie, attention whores).

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  7. Wait a minute. The quake sure did damage and it sure isn't good for Christchurch (unless, you know, its inhabitants really hated it there), but the damage itself is enough for people not to come there. If the hotel they booked thair stay in lies in ruins, then obviously they won't come. If the stadium is destroyed, no games can played there. So all the harm is made already, and publicity doesn't cause them. In fact, I think it could help. In a few years people might want to see the rebuilt city, maybe some ruins. So I think that the the saying about publicity remains correct.

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  8. Gotta agree - If I had the money for the Rugby World Cup, I'd be there regardless of how much damage was done.

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  9. even negative publicity leads to an increased profile.

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  10. I think it's good because any publicity in a time like this will raise awareness and can end up being a good thing, whether or not it's in good nature to begin with.

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  11. It is good publicity so long as you can argue for your product/service/situation and believe what you are saying.

    If there is negative publicity for a truly bad thing, it is good publicity as in it raises awareness and promotes positive change.

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