MARK MY WORDS

Mark’s view

Whenever the news agenda hits hysteria point, Mark offers thoughtful analysis, a wry point of view and an insider’s insight
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Latest ‘MARK MY WORDS’ Blog Posts

  • Reputation management in the age of Abdicated Princes & Netflix

    With the news that Meghan Markle and Harry Windsor are going to set up their own studio which will be making overtly political documentaries, it is worth considering the lessons that can be drawn from their closest contemporaries – the Obamas. Barack and Michelle have both done brilliant things in their post-Presidency, learning the appropriate […]

  • David Icke and the True Measure of Influence

    At a glance, this is terrifying. We talk and talk about purpose and authenticity but the ugly truth is that, with the right platform, a little style and some gumption, the conspiracy brigade is attracting a bigger audience than ever.It’s got me thinking about levels of influence. David Icke is a figure of fun but […]

  • Burger King and Ogilvy make gamers Twitch

    Screw the backlash. This is brilliant. With the advent of every new media comes the gold rush; the scramble for the advertising, comms and marketing industries to find a sweet spot in which commercial content can gain, or at least hijack an organic audience before the platform undergoes a Facebook style-hypercommercialisation. I’ve been a fan […]

  • Junk food peddlers have some of the biggest mouths in the media industry

    Ben & Jerry’s have always had activism at their heart but they need to be careful not to overreach and turn into BrewDog.A lot of our PR fables seem to be confectionary-based these days, but as I’ve said before, junk food peddlers have some of the biggest mouths in the media industry.The ice cream barons […]

  • Fast Food

    Fast Food is a fascinating industry for PR-watchers, one of the few where brands still allot budget and freedom to big, bombastic stunts. In the UK we rarely go a month without a (largely very effective) Greggs wheeze, while across the pond an escalating series of shenanigans (of questionable PR value) has recently included Popeye […]

  • Rashford and the Fame Revolution

      I will be talking publicly about the repurposing of celebrity as a theme over the coming weeks and why you should keep your eyes out for this new style of celebrity.   First of all, hats off to Marcus Rashford. He has managed to force as many U-turns out of this wobbling government as […]

  • Banning Fawlty Towers is the stunt of the year

    I will be judging the award for best PR campaigns at The Drum awards later this year, and there’s already a massive frontrunner in my mind. The anonymous executive with an eye for mischief who has banned Fawlty Towers has done something absolutely brilliant. Let me explain. Any great publicity stunt combines celebrity with controversy. I refuse […]

  • Don’t mistake a splash in the river for progress

    When I saw that Bristol had torn down the statue of Edward Colston, it was a powerful event. An evil man of his time who made his fortune and built a city, lying at the feet of ancestors of the lives he ruined. It was a potent image, but I thought it could have been […]

  • Dominic Cummings – good manners cost nothing

    The key for modern unscrupulous politicians is to get between their critics and the electorate. Trump, Corbyn and Cummings have all spent hours talking about how the media is fake, bias and sitting in ivory towers laughing at the little people. It’s a potent siren song for any voter and Cummings clearly counted on it […]

  • Leadership

    Unintended consequences are often the result when leaders communicate without a clear understanding of the media, the crowd and their own people. Leadership once associated and celebrated for being able to create order from chaos, will now be applauded for thriving in it, with policies, that back in February would have seemed unworkable, now the […]

  • At What Cost?

    Reputation is hard won and easily lost if you’re not careful. Today, as the judge dismissed multiple claims in Meghan Markle’s case against Associated Newspapers, her reputation is under the spotlight again and will be the subject of many headlines and debates, most of which will examine her motives and image and fuel the type […]

  • WHAT DO YOU MEAN?

    In crisis situations we tend to move faster. We react and defend and there’s nothing wrong with that until any lack of thinking and preparation alongside, comes back at us with force. We have all seen daily examples of hope and positivity from business and people as well as what happens when any combination of […]

  • MEASURE BY MEASURE

    This post is a very different musing on the news agenda. The Last thing anyone needs at the moment is another perspective or opinion. Instead, it’s a collection of this and that, hopefully, so we can glimpse views together and not just dissect the picture on the wall.  It’s certainly not a how-to-do-it nor does […]

  • Let’s Measure in units of trust

    Money, hard times and political wrangling are good news for the media (traditional and social) For several years vast teams have been writing algorithms and toxic headlines to ensure that everyone is as outraged as possible and as often as possible whilst mindsets, whatever they might be at any time, are reinforced. The rumour virus […]

  • Caroline Flack – We Are All Guilty

      We are all to blame for the death of Caroline Flack. Even those of us who choose not to enter into the toxic fuelling of clickbait narratives with their ravaged commentary and opinion, still often view from afar and with an opinion. Our cultural addiction begins with popular soaps like Coronation Street, and the […]

  • Why Do The Propagandists Keep Winning?

      News cycles have shrunk from days to minutes.   Where once the attention of the nation would convalesce around iconic events from the Blind Date, Coronation St, House Party, Dallas, the Lottery Draw to mega football clashes  and the News at Ten, today it splinters into a thousand fragments. The water cooler has been […]

  • More about PR and precedent

    The #SussexRoyal PR disaster which has gathered almost terminal momentum recently could have been avoided if they had heeded advice and precedent and had a plan from the beginning which took into account the rules and boundaries of Royal media relations. There is no doubt that being a top tier member of the Royals is […]

  • This isn’t Hollywood

    One thing is certain, if you don’t deal with hubris and ego it’s going to keep on biting you. So you’d think that Harry and Meghan would have learned that if they want to win the press war, they have to lead it, not fight every word with petulance, stand offs and impulsive statements. But […]

  • Predictions for 2020

    It’s January 3rd and I have already been emailed several ‘lists’ of PR and other predictions and Top Tens. Mostly they say the same thing in slightly different ways. Anyway, I thought I would join in with a slightly alternative list and here goes. I shall be rudely awakened at 5.50am on at least five occasions to […]

  • Thoughts on a shattered country

    For a long time, I’ve known that moderates across the country were in trouble, but I didn’t realise that it would get this bad, this fast.We have handed our country into the hands of people who are willing to stoop to unprecedented lows in the pursuit of success. In this campaign they made promises and […]

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