For f*k sake, why do PR companies get it so wrong?

{I have been wanting to post this for some time, but I keep thinking that one of the rules of media is not to alienate all the potential advertisers and PR companies.  Surely.  I have however come to the conclusion that I really am not dependent on advertisers, and PR companies .. .. or their products. So, with that in mind, here is me throwing caution to the wind ……}

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I am not exactly the darling of the media industry.

I really do not care much for free give-aways.  I don’t really want to punt your product on my blog, and I automatically delete press releases that have been spammed on to me.

I have very little interest in trying to make a living through my blog.

I like to blog.  I like to blog when I want.  About what I want.  When I want.

Nothing makes me less likely to blog than feeling forced to blog about something or someone.

I do not really want to watch my P’s and Q’s when it comes to whether I am going to have a bit of a shit fit at a later stage that may or may not involve your product or your client’s company.

I really just could not be arsed.

The last Blog Meetup I went to – there was quite a bit of talk about Bloggers and PR Companies and how we can work together.

I have had very limited experience with PR companies other than the odd SPAM.  I get really frustrated when I get press release, after press release, after fucking press release.  {though I do ask to be removed from the mailing list …. politely}

I have not posted a press release on my blog.  Ever.  I am not likely to start now.

I do try to be as courteous as I can – if you think Reluctant Mom and your client can do something together, then contact me directly with something that sort of interests me, and will appeal to my readers.

The problem is I get invited to events.  In Johannesburg.  I AM IN CAPE TOWN.

I get notified about products that have ABSOLUTELY no relevance to my life.

In get sent the same thing that almost ever blogger is sent.  So even though I MIGHT be vaguely interested in your product, when I see the same thing pop up on 5 other bloggers pages, then I am not going to be posting it on mine.

I get press releases.  I DO NOT POST PRESS RELEASES.

I get asked by PR companies about my visits/hits/pap smear results.  NO, YOU CANNOT HAVE MY NUMBERS, NOW GO AWAY!

I am sure there are lovely, bright, clever and some very talented PR people out there.

I am almost sure of it, though the evidence that I am presented with leads me to believe otherwise.

Why do PR people not work harder at forging relationships with specific bloggers, rather than spamming all of them?

Or is this a numbers game and you send 100 mail shots in the hope of getting 2 that will stick?

If so, that even makes me feel more special.  In theory I am a motorist and you are just handing out brochures at a street corner, and hoping one of us is going to read it and then go and buy your pizza {insert product} or tell a friend about it.

I can honestly say my soul dies a little every time my mail box opens and there is something from a PR company.

I want to be excited about your PR company.

I want to be wowed by the product you are trying to punt.

I want to think “wow, you are so clever you have really got my attention ……”

I love a good advertising campaign — I do.  Make me think, make me go “hey I am intrigued” and I am yours for the taking.

The problem is that your email is generic.  And so annoying that you irritate me.

I just want to delete you. With a hard delete, not the soft one where I can change my mind and go and get you out of my deleted folder later.

 

I also accept that I might be the only blogger who thinks this way, and there are PR folks who are getting it right.  Or not.

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Then they made pink Lego …. and the world ended.

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Before I had kids I had very clear ideas about my kids playing with non-gender specific toys.

What I actually meant was I did not want Connor playing with guns.

I grew up in a home where we had a wall of rifles mounted on our lounge – we were fancy like that.

Guns were around and we had free access.

I don’t mean they were in a safe and we knew where the key was.  I mean that there was a sawn-off double barreled shotgun that lay on my father’s side table, and it was there pretty much any time you felt an overriding urge to pick it up and go on the rampage at the local post office.

The bullets/shot gun casings were cleverly hidden in the top drawer.

My point is we did not play with toy guns – because we had the real shit right there.

As an adult I just did not wanted my kids to play with guns.  I just didn’t and don’t.  I am not sure of the reason. I do not buy my kids toy guns, and when ever we were given one, it would make its way out of the house.

I also do not allow my kids to watch wrestling.

I also hate boys wearing vests (not the boys, just the vests).  I am not sure what it is that makes me recoil in horror when I see a boy/man in a vest.

I did dress my girls in pink when they came along.  I realised that somewhere a feminist was burning her suffragettes’ card in horror – but none the less I bought pink with abandon.

Vests I had a problem with, girls in pink were no issue for me.

Then I saw the girls’ toy aisle at most toy stores, crammed with plastic irons, ironing boards, microwaves and cleaning kits.

I shat myself a bit, pulled my hair in distress, and thought about forming a one woman picket line outside Toys ‘r Us with a crudely made sign from a 5 litre wine box.

Then my girls started asking for the cleaning kits, and wanting the little plastic iron, and being envious they did not have the cleaning apron as well.

Years ago, I took great umbrage to what was stocked at toy stores – I  wanted my girls to aspire to something more than wanting to get their toilet bowl smelling lemony clean and shiny.

When all is said and done, I have tried to just calm the fk down and if the girls want to purchase Lego because it is pink, then let them, if Connor wants to make a “toy gun” from macaroni and a  pencil, then let him.

I  had ideals.  And then I  had kids.

I have realised that the fact that the toy stores stock “cleaning and household” products in the girls’ toy aisle is less important than the fact that my girls do not know what twerking is.

I had ideals about parenting.  Then I realised that I  am going to be driving to the same primary school for fourteen years.

Many many other things started to fade away into obscurity at that point.

I had ideals about how I wanted to parent my children.  Then life got in the way, and some days it is just easier to give your girl child a Barbie and sort of keep quiet about Barbie and everything she represents.

People are losing their minds about Lego releasing “pink and purple” bricks and figurines aimed at catching girl children’s interest. Then I say people are going off pop,  I am not even hinting at the shit storm that I saw all over social media platforms.

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I am not seeing the issue.  {yes I have read the various opinions and the horror and apocalypse that appears to be happening due to the release of pink Lego}

Shall we argue around in circles that Lego was already unisex?  Yes let’s.

Of course boys and girls played with Lego.

I  doubt (and I have not conducted an intricate scientific study) that girls are less excited about Lego than boys are.   I wish they were, but the reality is that girls aren’t.

Girls just do not get all excited by traditional Lego.

If adding some pink and purple blocks and a few female/girly looking figures gets girls more interested in playing with Lego – well, then I am actually pro the new idea.

If you wish to protest it based on your map of the world, and that you feel that boys and girls should be equally drawn to the “non-gender specific blocks” on the market, then goody for you.  Pop along and buy a few Star Wars ones and present it at the next party as a gift to the girl in question, see how that goes.

Short story.   I had ideals about parenting.  Reality unfortunately crept in.  I adjust my parenting map of the world accordingly.

Pink Lego = non issue in my universe.

I still do not let my boy child wear a vest.

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Happy Birthday …. er to me!

I am hoping that when you read this I am skipping around Franschoek, and trying to forget that I am forty-fucking-one.

It is all a bit frightening.  I am closer to being 60 than I am to being 20.

I have no pearls of wisdom to share.  Happy birthday me!  I will stab the next child who calls me “tannie” ……

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