Noise, noise, noise. It’s hard to get attention these days for your ideas or product. But not all attention is worthwhile…
I found a story in this morning’s news that describes using a well-timed illusion to raise awareness about driving with caution in school zones. Officials have apparently considered whether the tactic might itself distract drivers enough to cause an accident. But in the interest of protecting children and changing driver behaviour, they have decided to go ahead with it and have taken at least a few measures to reduce that risk.
PR tactics and stunts go wrong for one of three reasons:
1) Poor understanding of the goal
2) Lack of planning
3) Taking unnecessary risks
So, if the goal is to sell something or build brand awareness, would a similar tactic still be OK? It’s easy to get wrapped up in our own hype, so remember to ask what could go wrong before you launch your next campaign. It might still be fine to go ahead, but it’s prudent to plan for the worst and think about what could happen to your image if it backfires.