Category: Our Blog

Beer truth

Eric Murray featured in an advert that claims beer has nutritional values.  According to the Advertising Standards Authority, this ex-rower is a hero of young people, so he had to be removed. We asked our own kids. They hadn’t heard of him. They hadn’t seen the advert either.   When the attack came via a Read More …

How to stoke publicity

Following the first wave of reports about Israel Folau’s comments, journalists stoked the story by printing views from an ever-widening circle of prominent people.   Every couple of hours a new person was headlined, each predictably outraged.   This is a reminder of the magnifying power of follow-up phases in media coverage. Every piece of Read More …

Why do you sponsor stuff?

Qantas got the Israel Folau furore wrong because it confused a profile sponsorship for a value sponsorship.   Profile sponsorships are of big-ticket established organisations. You’re paying for a platform to achieve brand awareness and marketing. If there’s brand alignment, it’s at the highest conceptual level (e.g. fitness, excellence, achievement), not values. Most consumers don’t Read More …

The Tron’s time to be heard

In terms of Waikato’s role on the national stage, growth is a double-edged sword. Our city, our institutions and our companies will be scrutinised with the same fervour applied to Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.   The scale of our success and operations means there’s either many customers or supporters involved, or a large amount of Read More …

Why Mike King is communicator of the year

Mike King demonstrates that to achieve your communication objectives you usually must risk someone disagreeing with you.   The tension in our professional lives is how to express our opinion without getting offside with others.   We measure our communication by agreeability. We talk in truisms. Our views are expressed only very broadly. We echo Read More …

BlacklandPR opens Waikato office

BlacklandPR has today announced the opening of its new office in Hamilton, to be run by ex-journalist and PR expert Greta Shirley.   The opening reflects growth of the Waikato economy and the demand for Blackland’s mission; PR that reaches people in the suburbs and regions of New Zealand.   Blackland PR Director Mark Blackham, Read More …

Mike King named NZ Communicator of the Year

Mental health awareness campaigner and New Zealand of the Year finalist Mike King has been named winner of the 2017 Communicator of the Year Award for his ability to communicate directly and openly about mental health.   BlacklandPR director Mark Blackham said Mike King was the outstanding communicator over 2017 due to his clarity and Read More …

What do you mean?

When people communicate, we often use words we know other people like. But this causes trouble when our meaning of the word is different to theirs.   For example, it’s de rigueur to talk about “vulnerable” people. But what we mean by using this word is extremely variable. Is it poor, aged, adolescent, female…? And Read More …

You can brief the new Minister

A little-known tool organisations can use to influence new Ministers, especially new governments following general elections, is a dedicated briefing paper.   Traditionally, new Ministries and government agencies supply the new Minister with a written briefing paper explaining their portfolio responsibilities, current issues and work-in-progress.   Known as a BIM (Briefing for the Incoming Minister), Read More …

How to deliver public warnings

New research reveals that New Zealand institutions are failing to deliver effective public communication about imminent natural hazards.   Most of us know the story of the boy who cried wolf. In the versions popularized in the 1500s, the tale-telling boy is not believed when a wolf does appear. In some versions of the story Read More …