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Origins of Public Relations


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Origins of Public Relations

  1. 1. PR’s Origins and Evolution
  2. 2. Influence of Edward Bernays <ul><li>First to call himself public relations counsel </li></ul><ul><li>Wrote first PR book, “Crystallizing Public Opinion” </li></ul>
  3. 3. Clients of Edward Bernays <ul><li>P&G: Ivory soap </li></ul><ul><li>Beech-Nut Packing Company: encouraged consumers to eat bacon for breakfast </li></ul><ul><li>Electric Light: Golden jubilee, Edison re-enacted </li></ul><ul><li>Russian Ballet </li></ul><ul><li>President Coolidge: Aloof image, breakfast with movie stars </li></ul>
  4. 4. Influence of Ivy Lee <ul><li>First practitioner of modern PR </li></ul><ul><li>Invented the press release </li></ul><ul><li>Crisis communication for Penn RR </li></ul><ul><li>Clients included John D. Rockefeller and Adolf Hitler (indirectly) </li></ul>
  5. 5. PR’s Uses Throughout History <ul><li>Promote wars </li></ul><ul><li>Lobby for political causes </li></ul><ul><li>Support political parties </li></ul><ul><li>Promote religion </li></ul><ul><li>Sell products </li></ul><ul><li>Raise money </li></ul><ul><li>Publicize events and people </li></ul>
  6. 6. First Stage of PR in the USA <ul><li>Preliminary (1600-1799, Initial colonization and American Revolution) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Development of channels of communication </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Development of PR tactics such as publicity, promotion, press agentry </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>PR used to sell real estate (50 acres free to anyone who brought a new settler to America) and raise $ in colonies (colleges used brochures, press releases, sponsorships) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>PR used to promote American Revolution (heroes, slogans, newsletters, parades, songs, publicity), Constitution and Bill of Rights. </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Second Stage of PR in the USA <ul><li>Communicating/initiating (1800-1899 Civil War, Western expansion, Industrial Revolution) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Government: first press secretary, PR used in presidential campaigns, activist groups </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Development: Land promoted by making Daniel Boone a legendary figure, Greeley editorial in NY Tribune (“Go west, young man, and grow up with the country”) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Entertainment: P.T. Barnum, hoax by Washington Irving </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Education: Yale had PR and alumni office </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Second Stage of PR in the USA <ul><li>Communicating/initiating (1800-1899 Civil War, Western expansion, Industrial Revolution) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Business: Newspapers became a true mass medium with Linotype invention, companies realized they had to care about public (“The public be damned”—W.H. Vanderbilt), financial reports issued, companies creating press departments, department stores </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Press agents: had a talent for making news, exploited freaks for circuses, invented legends for politicians, told lies to get attention </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Publicists: Tried to plant stories in newspapers, hiding source </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Third Stage of PR in the USA <ul><li>Reacting/responding (1900 – 1939: Progressive Era, Muckrakers, WW I, Depression) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Publicists as spokespeople </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Muckrakers: Upton Sinclair’s depiction of meat-packing industry in The Jungle </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Founding of national consumer groups </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Industry had to respond. Could not ignore public and press. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>First PR specialists came from newspapers. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>First publicity firm (Publicity Bureau) founded in Boston in 1900. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Publicity valuable for public service orgs like YMCA, American Red Cross, Marine Corps. </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Third Stage of PR in the USA <ul><li>Reacting/responding (1900 – 1939: Progressive Era, Muckrakers, WW I, Depression) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>WWI: British urged U.S. to get involved, U.S. entered war with massive PR effort, newspapers gave free ad space, college professors were “four-minute men,” citizens encouraged to conserve food </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Third Stage of PR in the USA <ul><li>Reacting/responding (1900 – 1939: Progressive Era, Muckrakers, WW I, Depression) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1920s: scientific interest in public opinion, companies wanted to know what publics wanted </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Depression/New Deal: PR suffered, had to convince people that prosperity was around the corne </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Presidents used the press: Coolidge’s photo op, Wilson’s press conferences </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Fourth Stage of PR in the USA <ul><li>Planning/preventing (1940 – 1979) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>WW II: More sophisticated PR effort, War Advertising Council for support and $, use of film for PR (by gov’t and Hollywood) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Maturing of public relations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>First full School of Public Relations established at BU in 1947, PR associations developed </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>1950s: Booming economy, PR grew too, women entered field, business encouraged to reinvest in society, TV impacted growth of PR </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Fourth Stage of PR in the USA <ul><li>Planning/preventing (1940 – 1979) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1960s and 1970s: More responsibility for PR in corporate structure, time of great crisis and change (civil rights, nukes, space program, Vietnam, women’s rights, Watergate), MLK Jr. used PR techniques that produced social change in the 1960s, activists used PR </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consumerism: advanced rights and interests of consumers, business was the enemy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Texas Gulf Sulphur case (1973) required immediate disclosure of info that might affect market value of stock. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mobil sponsored Masterpiece Theatre and launched aggressive ad program. </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Fifth Stage of PR in the USA <ul><li>Professionalism (1980 – Present) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reagan: great communicator, Teflon president, permanent campaign, controlled, photo ops </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Integrated communication: mergers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Global: Technology, cultural awareness, need for coordination and consistency </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>AIDS awareness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Challenger explosion on Jan. 28, 1986 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Development of a Body of Knowledge, code of ethics, PR education </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Desktop computers: improved look of in-house materials </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WWW: new medium for PR, changed media relations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Downsizing created more freelancers, Growth in ethnic PR orgs </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. PR Outlook for the Future <ul><li>Employment of PR specialists expected to increase faster than the average for all occupations through 2012 </li></ul><ul><li>Increasingly diverse nation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Growth of minorities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“Baby Boomers” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Natural disasters </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Increasing use of technology </li></ul><ul><li>Global economy </li></ul>