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PR people should try to work with “new creatives” like MagicofRahat

15th January 2013

When this clip popped up on my twitter stream last week it caused me to stop and mull:

Now my confident prediction is that the young gentleman responsible will have received more than one approach from the marketing community to get involved with an idea or two.

It may also be the case that, if the approach comes from the right quarters, he’ll end up creating a brand film or two and will end up doing the lion’s share of their promotion himself – using an established network of bloggers and fans who watch his work.

With a channel delivering nearly 112 million views (at the time of writing), thanks to a degree of wit and humour - all organic - that the PR industry rarely aspires to manufacture on its own, MagicofRahat is just the sort of cultural creative the PR industry should want to work with.

Flick open a Metro on any day of the week and you'll be assailed by the work not of the PR industry (four days out of five at least) but of someone who has taken a shot of an animal, has made something monumental out of cardboard boxes or who has snapped those taking part in some form of bizarre religious ritual (often content that has been floating around on the web, sometimes for days, even months, before it bubbles up).

Then search for those people’s work on the internet and you’ll quickly find that they are generating a lot more conversation than the last spurious research story you did for your client.

And that’s the point of all of this.

Real people, doing odd things are generally more likely to create conversation than many of our clients. Culture is a far greater prompt for conversation than commerce.

Now this means that the PR has to develop a new skill – that of sifting through the thousands of oddballs to find the hidden gems, the next bright idea that will get people talking if the right brand is seen appropriately supporting the right creative idea.

Finding and predicting those who will break through next, bridging the gap between our client brands and creative minds wont to wander and creating partnerships that will lead to a happy interplay between brand and “culture” are the new skills of the consumer brand PR.

For while there may be four PRs to every journalist, the ratio is even greater of PRs to independent creative types who are creating the sort of pranks, stunts, snaps that occupy the very space in the media and in conversation we would like our clients to be in.

My argument would be that we can’t beat the odds. We can’t beat these web-based pranksters. And nor should we try. What instead we should do is learn to work with them and harness their unique brand of creative thinking to support our own work and the brands we represent.

When it comes to folk such as MagicofRahat, it really is the case that “we can’t beat them, we should all learn to join them”.

James Gordon-MacIntosh is a managing partner at Hope&Glory PR. He’s now working on a book – Ideas of the Year: an incomplete compendium of stunts, stories and japes. He’s looking for submissions, so if you’ve got work that should be included head here.

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