Public Relations – a lesson from Boris Johnson

Borisbicycle Lovely story in the papers yesterday. Woman is being mugged by 3 teenagers. With an iron bar (tabloids bound to love that bit of detail). When Boris Johnson passing on his bicycle came to her rescue they fled – hotly pursued by the Mayor of London till they disappeared into a nearby housing estate.  The story communicated 3 interesting messages

Citizens should come to each others rescue – look even the Mayor of London does it

Its OK to ride around London on a bicycle – look even the Mayor does it

Boris Johnson's staff knew nothing about it till they read it in the papers.

As I said Lovely work. And my favourite bit is the incident not being turned immediately into a press briefing. Either Boris Johnson is a good man or a clever man – probably a mixture of both. Public relations is not what you say about yourself but what others say about you. Most so called PR agencies are really media relations agencies who are waking up to the realisation that its less about what journalists are writing but about what people are saying – the two aren't necessarily connected.  I had a great morning yesterday at measurementcamp where among other groups PR professionals are learning how to follow the herd and to stop pretending that they are leading it. Nice one Boris

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