Savage Magic

First, define your audience.Convince them and you win.

First, define your audience.
Convince them and you win.

The British magazine The Economist is fond of phrases like “the savage magic of capitalism.” It’s also fond of describing itself as “Liberal” — in a Classical 18th century sense that is vastly more conservative than the 20th century version, let alone the 21st.

Perceptions of what is real and right depend on where you’re standing, and when.

Is it desirable to earn your living on a farm or in a city? Depends on how far the economy has developed — and no two nations are exactly the same.

Large family or small? Depends again on the development of society, the harshness of life and the odds of child mortality.

What about the structure of society? Paternal or maternal? Group-oriented or individualistic? Autocracy or democracy? Corporate behemoths operating within free markets, or state-run enterprises? History has good things — and bad — to say about all, as philosopher-historian Will Durant points out.

A generation ago, social relativism was all the rage — the concept that there were different right ways to do things for different eras and different societies. But the concept foundered as those who embraced it added a critical exemption — “as long as they do it our way.”

Today, perspectives are more polarized. There is even less acceptance of alternative ideas.

What’s this bode for Crisis & Reputation Management? With an audience so fragmented, you can refine your message to have broader appeal. But never lose sight of the audience that’s most important.

Is it convincing investigators that you did nothing wrong? An opponent in a litigation that your case is stronger than he thinks? A labor union that you’re not as stingy as it believes? A cynical public that distrusts anyone who has power or is accused?

Convince them and you win. Fail and you lose.


“Because Reputation Is Your Most Valuable Asset”

Gillott Communications is a Strategic PR firm. We’re Fixers. Crisis & Reputation Management. Litigation. Media Relations. Crisis Preparation & Training. You can reach Roger Gillott directly at 310-826-8696.

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For a deeper glimpse into our world, see our book on Amazon, “A Lawyer’s Guide to Crisis PR: Protecting Your Clients In & From the Media.”

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