Thursday, January 04, 2007

GR PR in Wake of Funeral

A former student of mine emailed for my opinion on the PR benefit of the media attention on GR during Ford's funeral. A good suggestion. Here's what I said:

I know that state funerals are tightly scripted and handled by the federal agencies, so locals might not have had much control. Also, it would be unseemly to try to "capitalize" on a funeral.

BUT, if you read the New York Times and other media today, you can see that GR comes out looking very good. Sometimes a good PR strategy is to let the facts speak for themselves, let people draw their own conclusions.

Now that it's done, however, the Ford Museum and city could and should work together to make sure they handle the inevitable increase in interest in the city and museum--the Grand Rapids Business Journal had a nice piece about this. Perhaps some special events and speaker series this summer while interest is still hot. I think they should take all the mementos out front and make a permanent display inside. They should also produce and sell a video drawing from the coverage by local TV stations--even partner with them to do so.

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