Friday, February 13, 2009

The Ugly Side of Publicity

I've had a fast and early education into the darker spectrums of human fraility and psychosis as a publicist. I had no grandiose expectations when I considered representing a friend who's now a client.

My job is to create or help create a marketable brand, field and secure radio, TV, and print interview requests, and promote my clients to their ideal demographic.

I didn't expect to deal with prim donas, would-be divas, people who'd never qualify as a diva, or people better suited an insane asylum.

My new job as a publicist is one that I embrace and know that I will be successful because I get to incorporate my background in theatre, writing, and editing. Most successful publicists and marketers have the gift of gab are are social butterflies. How else can we place our clients in venues and on radio and talk shows if we're not liked, or at least respected?

I've no patience and time for people who think they can take advantage of me or anyone else because they were once a corporate executive, physically attractive, or accustomed to delegating to subordinates.

Every third person is clamoring for fifteen minutes of fame and notoriety, but two out of three people don't understand what's involved in creating a public identity. It requires hard work and daily maintenance to sustain a reputable career. This isn't to say that one-trick or one-shot ponies have no place in life; they are the ones who amuse and teach us what not to do.

The ugly side of publicity shines a floodlight on the darker reaches of human greed, insecurity and stupidity. Too many are outraged or shocked during the early stages of contract negotiations. Don't be. Compromises have to be made to ensure both sides get the best deal at the time. Still others want to threaten legal for verbal agreements after they've watched a few episodes of Law & Order or Boston Legal. These are the ones who will probably never be successful, and will do whatever they feel necessary to have an audience.

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