The Future of Public Relations

Please respond to the following discussion:

P. T. Barnum established the publicity stunt and press event, created exclusively to attract attention and media coverage. The text explained that he was aware that controversy and curiosity sell, so he used that to engage people. I think that Barnum has greatly influenced the PR culture, both negatively and positively. Many of Barnum s methods have contributed to the common perception of PR even today, which were often unethical and only concerned about gaining publicity. However, his methods are still useful to attract people and their business today.

Ivy Lee was the originator of the public relations counsel concept. His firm s creation of a PR campaign has provided a very useful strategy for public relations to succeed. It has been presented as a landmark in the history of advocacy public relations (St. John, 2006). Parker & Lee, the public relations counselors, created a new way for PR firms to successfully help clients.

Edward Bernays utilized social science and behavioral psychology to manipulate behavior and public opinion. He taught one of the first courses on PR in the US at NYU, and his book, Crystallizing Public Opinion, is still read by students and scholars today. Bernays and his wife also pioneered the concept of pro bono work in PR, which is still common today as well.

I think that the future of PR encompasses many of the strategies that these pioneers introduced. Many are still used today or have been modified, suggesting that they will continue to be used in the future.

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