When this blog title landed, my first question was: “How many of these can I write?” There are plenty of PR accounts I would love to work on, so I found it almost impossible to narrow it down to just one.
Download Festival, World RX championship, Cathedral City, Waterstones and the inventor of Shellac: you are absolutely in my top five, and you can find Scriba’s phone number at the bottom of this web page if you want to sign us up and make my dream come true.
For the purposes of this blog though, I simply settled on the person who inspired me to become a writer. Or more so, to tell a story. Yorkshire’s finest: Michael Palin.
To put my idea to the test, I decided to pit it against the characteristics of a perfect client – based on a list from our friends at PRmoment.com. Here’s how Michael measured up:
Has an interesting story to tell
Absolutely. As a comedian, actor, writer and television presenter, he is the first person I think of when I’m asked: “Who would you have at your dream dinner party, dead or alive?”
Understands what PR can achieve and has realistic expectations
Firstly, you don’t gain unprecedented access to some of the most interesting and closely guarded places on earth without having plenty of PR-savvy. Michael has mastered the art of playing the PR game, while staying true to his journalistic roots. Just watch his recent documentary on North Korea if you’re in any doubt.
Check! Not only is he wonderful to everyone he meets during his travels, but I’ve also met him and confirmed this in person!
Given that I’m such a Palin #fangirl I went along to a meet-and-greet at the launch of one of his books a few years ago. I cringe when I look back, but I excitedly told him that he’s the reason I am where I am. Although he must have thought I was a complete maniac, he was incredibly humble and made time to speak to and learn more about each of us waiting there.
Is committed to the PR process and makes quick decisions
Well, as Monty Python’s Flying Circus taught us, Michael isn’t a fan of “The Spanish Inquisition.” However, knowing how much he likes to explore the length and breadth of the globe, I reckon pinning him down in a place where there’s phone signal might be a bit of an issue.
Tells its PR agency the truth
Of course. Michael is a Yorkshire lad, we’re straight-talking, honest folks.
Values opportunities over minimising risk
Well… here’s the interesting thing. You see some of the places he visits and the things he does and think, ‘I wouldn’t do that for the telly!’ But, do you really think the BBC would have sent him on his travels with just some beige khakis and a rucksack? The number of risk assessments and method statements completed – before he even makes his way to the BA business lounge – must be endless.
Is enthusiastic about the partnership
Of course! He works in the media, so he understands the media. Plus, I would be like a kid at Christmas, so I am sure some of that enthusiasm would rub off on him.
This is where my dream PR pitch ends. But if Michael is thinking about edging along a precipice or abseiling down a building in his next series, I reckon Scriba’s client Access North could have a hand in providing some rope access for our fellow Yorkshireman. So, there may be an ‘in’ for me after all….