Stories by Matthew Schwartz

The Deadening Consequences of An Overreliance on Data

November 13th, 2013 by

One of the more insidious aspects of living in a digital age is not having enough time to read full-length articles as much as I like.

Sure, I make a valiant effort to read that wholly absorbing, 20,000-word piece in The New Yorker or a wonderful essay in Harper’s.
But then the distractions kick in, most of them self-inflicted

Reflections on the State of PR, Via the PRSA Annual Meeting

October 31st, 2013 by

I attended the Public Relations Society of America’s annual meeting this week in Philly, and as so often happens when you get out into the field to listen, think and discuss things with your peers, I came back to the office with some valuable new perspectives. The event itself left few stones unturned regarding the… Continued

Yucky Comments Can Sometimes Be a Beautiful Thing

October 1st, 2013 by

PR execs are not supposed to parrot the boss. At least on paper. Despite the tremendous changes throughout the PR field, one thing remains a constant: The ability of PR managers to take an alternative (if not contrarian) view of the party line and say to the top brass, “That may not be the best… Continued

PR Industry Missed an Opportunity During the Putin/Ketchum Op-Ed Episode to Talk About the Role of PR

September 18th, 2013 by

Last week’s episode in which Ketchum helped place an op-ed piece by Russian President Vladimir Putin in The New York Times has shined a less-than-flattering spotlight on the PR profession. In the Putin article, titled, “A Plea For Caution From Russia,” Putin seeks a solution to the violence in Syria. “Recent events have prompted me… Continued

Privacy is an Anachronism in PR and Elsewhere: Act Accordingly

September 11th, 2013 by

In an episode of “Family Guy,” Stewie is hobnobbing at a party when he announces that “you’re going to love this” as a prelude to a politically incorrect joke. But before he says anything, he goes outside the door to see if the coast is clear. Then he runs out to the street to see… Continued

In a Media Age Where Most Everything Is a Gamble, CSR Remains a Safe Bet

August 14th, 2013 by

Amidst the turbulence in marketing communications, one area seems a fairly safe harbor for PR professionals: corporate social responsibility (CSR).

Chuck E. Cheese Needs to Take Fisticuffs Off The Menu

July 31st, 2013 by

A 20-person brawl at a Chuck E. Cheese outlet in Wisconsin is just the latest episode of violence at the fast-food chain that caters to kids. Earlier this week a dad and his young son both had to be treated for injuries after an attempted robbery outside of a Chuck E. Cheese outlet in New… Continued

Playin’ in the Sand: PR Beach Reading

July 9th, 2013 by

As any PR pro can tell you, it’s all in the timing. Whether it’s when you reach a reporter just as he’s in the thick of a story for which your brand can provide some much-needed insight or launch a PR campaign that attaches itself to the zeitgeist, timing is everything. This applies to both… Continued

Firing of Zimmer Doesn’t Exactly Suit a Social Media Age

June 25th, 2013 by

In abruptly firing Men’s Wearhouse founder and executive chairman George Zimmer, the men’s clothing company has sent a few messages to the marketplace, none of which are likely to help the brand’s reputation or its PR efforts.

Media Inquiries Into PR Departments Should Not Be an Exercise in Frustration

May 20th, 2013 by

You’re a busy journalist. You’re on deadline. You’re trying to round up sources and interviews for a story you need to crank out today. One of your most promising sources is not responding, gone off the grid. But you’re still hopeful, especially because she and her company have PR representation. So you go to the… Continued