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Good and Bad PR: Is it a bird, is it a plane or is it overpriced ice-cream?

As temperatures have soared across the country and UK infrastructure ground to a near halt, fear not, the world of Public Relations has remained resilient and carried on.

Here I am again with this week’s Good and Bad PR.

Have you tried turning it off, and then back on again?

Manchester Airport comms team will no doubt have been focused heavily on nothing else all week but how they scored in this very column. You know what, I am giving them this week’s first Good PR!

There is little more stressful than aviation comms, an industry that I have worked in, doing both traditional and crisis communications. I know how hard it is to manage an airport issue, not least when you have metal cans flying around with humans in, so I know the power cut it experienced on 24 June was a major headache. 

The whole thing wasn’t helped by citizen journalists coming from every angle.

On top of this, the typical historic accusations of under-investment being the real cause of the problem, came out once again. The airport comms team dealt with it all hugely well and normal service was resumed fairly quickly. Given we are heading into the peak travel season, it could have gone much worse, and the team deserves huge credit.

This is ground control to Major Tom, we are sticking in a tin can

Boeing has had bad PR for a few years, but this week has been a real stinker. The CEO was hauled in-front of a US Senate committee to face serious accusations of whistle-blower intimidation (and death), asset stripping and general mis-management. Suffice to say, he did not come out of it very well and the share price continues its decline.

On top of this, a new, intergalactic, issue has come to the fore. NASA has a few astronaut’s stuck in space, testing a new Boeing Starliner spaceship. There have been a few technical issues and the humans in space are stuck until the fixes are found. The crew are in no danger, unless they miss a significant other’s birthday I would guess.

All in all, another bad week for Boeing.

Ladies and Gentlemen of the class of 2024, wear sunscreen (from a discount supermarket)

Another topical story given the weather, but with slightly more sinister health consequences came from our favourite affiliate marketing specialists, Which. I jest, it is a great trade body, I know.

It had a major story land this week after it carried out tests on branded sun cream to see which lived up to the billing. Some big brands did not come out so well.

Asda, Bondi Sands and Calypso all had products fail some of the tests. But, Asda came out firing, refusing to accept or acknowledge the Which testing criteria.

Lidl and Aldi products stacked up well, alongside the big-name brands like Garnier and Nivea.

A temporary blip in the PR roadmap for Asda, but another great week for Aldi and Lidl.

I scream at the price of cold treats

I think this next story is definitely on the back of a viral video clip of two young girls moaning about the price of ice cream. The Mirror decided to look into the increase in prices of vanilla ice cream across the supermarkets.

Tesco came out worse this time, with a 20% increase. Cornetto came out as having the biggest increase across all of its products, a whopping 25p increase over 11 products. Tesco dealt with the story in the way you would expect of such trivial news, they refused to comment, as did Ben and Jerry’s and Haagen-Dazs.

To be fair to Tesco, all of the main supermarkets had increases but their price rise caught the eye the most.

The British Retail Consortium were left to put a response together and they mentioned, shock horror, rising supply chain costs. Good PR for The Mirror, not so good for ice cream makers.

Another week of General Election nonsense

I very much think that historians will look at the 2024 election as “the quiet one”. People are fed up. Fed up of high prices, fed up with politicians and fed up with the nonsense.

This week’s nonsense is the fact that some politicians, their assistants and even some of the police protection teams have been caught up in an election date betting scandal.

The TV debates have had little public interest, the manifesto launches are gaining zero mainstream cut through and my take is that people just want it over, done with and the next lot to come in and do nothing of substance either. UK Politics is in a mess, every time we think it has reached a new low, it drops a bit more.

What a positive moment to end this week’s column on.

Got it right or wrong, be sure to let me know over on The Twittering X, @10Yetis.

Written by Andy Barr, owner of 10 Yetis Digital

Got it right or wrong? I don’t really care, but do feel free to let me know. You can find me over on The Twittering X, @10Yetis. Hoorah, thank you and, onwards.

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