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Good and Bad PR: Wellington New Zealand here we come!

Good PR

Often, big companies that are looking to go on a bit of a recruitment drive will use PR to their advantage and do something to try and attract applicants. Well, sometimes a city will do the same too. The capital of New Zealand has launched a program called “LookSee Wellington” and the aim of the initiative is to recruit 100 talented technology candidates from around the world, particularly from the USA, to fill immediate and short-term skills gaps for participating companies and employers.

The programme is giving the 100 people free flights and accommodation to check out the city for a whole week, but they need to commit to a pre-arranged job interview with a tech company in the area whose recruitment requirements match their skills. Those interested in the programme can create a profile on the LookSee website and then the Wellington employers taking part will nominate their chosen candidates. Those with the highest number of nominations will be selected to fly out. Swoon!

Tech companies in Wellington, New Zealand, include Xero (the accounting software group) and Weta Digital, which you may not have heard of, but is the company that did the visual effects for Lord of the Rings and Avatar (so, you know, it's pretty slick).

I imagine that interest in the LookSee Wellington programme has gone through the roof, thanks to coverage on the likes of Forbes, Mashable, Stuff, USA Today and loads of other titles around the world.

It’s a great idea and brilliant PR for the city of Wellington (which I now 100% want to visit after seeing all the great pictures of the capital and reading about why it’s so awesome).

Bad PR

I quite like the clothes on sale at Zara, but I have to admit that its sales messages of late are certainly questionable. There’s been somewhat of an uproar this week in response to the fashion brand’s choice of in-store ads… one in particular.

The small poster in question, positioned next to the clothes on-sale, has a picture of two models on it, looking back over their shoulders, with the message “love your curves”. Women should love their curves; they should fully embrace them, so the message isn’t really the problem here. On its own, it would be empowering and confidence-boosting.

However, the problem here is that Zara’s choice of models for said poster were probably no bigger than a UK size 4 to 6. Although there is absolutely nothing wrong with the figures of these ladies, there isn’t really a curve in sight; making it contradictory to the message.

Loads of brands have jumped on-board the body confidence bandwagon, which is great, but when they get it wrong like Zara has in this case, it’s pretty bad. Featuring a curvier model on such a poster would have meant that the fashion retailer wouldn’t be dealing with this backlash.

It was a tweet by the Irish radio personality Muireann O’Connell which brought this to people’s attention in the big wide world of social media, reading “You have got to be sh*tting me, Zara.” From there, it erupted. My favourite was a tweet from @BertSwattermain which said “Love your curves – Zara” with a picture of two chopsticks.

Someone in the creative department at Zara is probably sat with their head in their hands right now. Publications like the Metro, The Tab, The Poke, Perez Hilton and plenty more have run the story; adding to the headache for Zara.

Written by Shannon Peerless, 10 Yetis @ShazzaYeti on Twitter
Seen any good or bad PR lately? You know what to do @10Yetis on Twitter or on email

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