I was on a plane for a couple of hours this morning, so I spent the time reading through all the PR statements of the last quarter (03/11). I then compared those statements with the ones which dropped into my inbox this week. Honestly, if you find the time to do this please do. It is an eye-opener to say the least and underlines my campaign for an agreement to be put in place right across the industry on how numbers should be presented in PR terms.
This morning, I was chuckling so much that I nearly spilt my hugely expensive Easyjet coffee over the guy next to me. I read how just three months ago a certain breakfast jock was a hero, this time around he was not even mentioned. Could it be because they had gone down? We were then talking about share, this time share has disappeared. It’s all about reach. Oh hang on, that’s down too, but as we are up by 0.1% in hours, we have won. You have to hand it to these PR professionals because they are nothing short of brilliant. I also played this game myself so I am equally guilty for past transgressions but like everything else, we have to move on. It is not what people say, it is what they leave out that is confusing to so many. Today, for the first time in years, I read that we have a stunning afternoon show somewhere in our midst. Let’s be honest, when did you last read a story about how good the afternoon show was doing? What have we missed?
If this was TV you would see me now standing with my big hand up to the Lord almighty and the other on my blue peter badge. I promise from next quarter that I will ask a small team of smart, hardnosed, totally fair, unbiased individuals to a cheap lunch where we will read through all of the PR releases, review the numbers in reality while looking at everything in the round. Then we will award the UK RADIO PR BULLSHIT AWARD to the station or group that deserves it. I am all for being positive, but it is now positively ridiculous. We have a world best radio product that attracts the love and loyalty of 92% of the population. We don’t need to spin, we just need to be open and honest.
Be brave. When it’s good tell the world it’s good, but when it’s bad, just say so. We get it, we understand, we know you will come back strongly the next time. It’s not your fault. We only look at Year on Year anyway – right?