Life’s a pitch! National Publicist Day is observed annually on October 30, but at South Florida-based boutique public relations agency, Durée & Company, we think publicists should be celebrated every day.
So, why is October 30 the day that publicists around the world are celebrated? Here’s a little history lesson. On October 30, 1906, the very first press release, written by the “father of modern PR” Ivy Lee, was published by The New York Times. It was written in response to the tragic October 28, 1906 accident that occurred along the Pennsylvania Railroad.
In full crisis communication mode, Ivy Lee drafted the first press release on behalf of his client, and not only convinced the railroad to distribute the public statement, but also convinced them to provide a train to get reporters to the scene of the accident. The New York Times was so impressed with this groundbreaking approach to communication that it printed Lee’s press release verbatim, on Oct. 30, 1906, as the “Statement from the Road.” Talk about crisis communications!
In celebration of National Publicist Day, and on a much lighter note, we’re commemorating our favorite fictional publicists from some of our favorite TV shows and movies. How publicists are portrayed in pop culture may not always resemble real life, but that doesn’t mean we didn’t learn a thing or two from these actor’s on-air careers. Lights, camera, action!
- Sex and the City: At Durée & Company, shamelessly, we’re all die-hard SATC fans! While PR isn’t all about planning and attending fabulous events like character Samantha Jones (Kim Cattrall) portrays it to be, the fictional NYC publicist teaches us one of the most important PR lessons, “your network is your net worth.” If Samantha doesn’t know someone, she knows someone who knows someone. Samantha leverages her copious communication skills to build her clients’ reputations (and get them into the best parties). Building relationships with journalists is the key to getting media coverage and no one knows that better than Samantha Jones!
- Jerry Maguire: The unforgettable catchphrase “Show Me the Money” comes from this classic Tom Cruise movie. From the hilarious lines to the battles with other agents attempting to steal his clients, Jerry Maguire is one of our all-time favorites! Although not a publicist by trade, Jerry puts so many PR skills to practice from his dedication to his clients to utilizing pitching strategies, marketing tactics and negotiating skills.
- Scandal: There’s no better fictional publicist to learn crisis communication from than Oliva Pope (Kerry Washington). Oliva plays the role of a crisis manager based in Washington D.C, who owns her own firm, Pope & Associates, and focuses on managing political crises. Like most publicists, Olivia will do anything and everything to fix a crisis and protect her clients, from hiding bodies to rigging presidential elections. Pope & Associates is made up of a dream team of “gladiators” who each bring unique attributes to the agency. And like any good PR team, Olivia is always in the know!
- Mad Men: While based on an advertising agency, PR is just as high pressure as the advertising world on NYC’s renowned Madison Avenue. Don Draper (Jon Hamm), Roger Sterling (John Slattery) and the Mad Men team offer many relevant real-world scenarios that publicists encounter every day including client interaction, strategy planning, content creation, new business pitches and agency dynamics. We especially love partner of the firm Joan Holloway, (Christina Hendricks) who utilizes her innate PR talents to counsel clients, advise the other partners and smooth over any wrinkles at a moment’s notice.
- Entourage: Shauna Roberts (Debi Mazar) plays the role of a sassy and brutally honest Los Angeles publicist who represents actor Vincent Chase (Adrian Grenier). Though Vincent doesn’t seem to care about his image, Shauna is shown throughout the TV series using her connections and sharp tongue to help him make huge media appearances, land celebrity endorsements and further his acting career.
About Durée & Company
Durée & Company, Inc. is an award-winning full-service public relations, marketing and special events firm with offices in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Aspen, Colorado. The firm serves the corporate, agency and non-profit arenas for local, national and international clients focusing on public relations for real estate, public relations for restaurants, public relations for law firms, public relations for charities, public relations for healthcare, and many more. Durée & Company services include Public Relations, Social Media, Marketing, Advertising, Special Events, and Radio Promotions and Outreach.