Edelman got something right this week. The firm announced the findings of a survey that were actually meaningful in an ironic kinda way. Apparently, the UK tops the "cynicism league."
By way of background, Edelman, one of the largest PR firms in the world, puts out an annual sales promotion piece – a global “survey” wink wink – with the hokey title, "The Edelman Trust Barometer." It’s a pseudo-scientific study basically that, sales aside, gives Richard Edelman, the firm's CEO, something to sound smart and talk about at Davos. First blush, one has to be impressed with all the numbers in it. In the world of PR, it's very powerful.
Anyway, this is the eighth annual Edelman Trust Barometer. This year they claim that their survey of "opinion leaders" (whatever that means) showed that “the UK’s trust in government, business and non-governmental organizations has dropped dramatically.”
Stuart Smith, CEO Edelman London, said: “This year we have seen significant declines in trust across all sectors: business, NGOs, media and government. When compared with other countries we seem to be a national of skeptics.”
Turns out, THAT’S GOOD!!
Turns out that Edelman’s real motive according to Smith is this: “If companies want to build trust in the UK, they must engage their audiences more effectively than ever before, using a range of traditional and new media.” Translation: buy Edelman’s PR spin to increase your trust factor. Turns out, that's complete crap!
Thank God somebody is pointing out that these "publicity polls" -- that's what they're called in the PR biz! -- are bullshit. Then, again, the rest of the media -- except whoring junk trade pubs like PRWeek -- just ignore them.
Amen brother Jeremy. Any PR firm issuing a "Trust Barometer" is taking itself way too seriously while nobody else is. Yet Richard gets big play in Financial Times for this nonsense. Can we start a "Bullshit Barometer"?