Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Miss PR

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

My husband and I recently offered to do some PR work for an organization. We believe in their product and we were sure that we could be helpful in promoting them. To this point, they had had a small success and we were sure, if promoted properly, that they could become extremely successful.

We had to go out of town for this PR work and so we looked at it as a mini vacation. We were to go to the hotel, check in and then meet with the young girl who was in charge of their marketing.
We did just that. We checked in, contacted Miss PR and were told she would get back to us in a few minutes.

An hour later, we finally got a call to come and meet with her in her hotel room. I should mention that we were on a very tight schedule and needed to get out there and start promoting asap! We entered her room and she was running around like the old chicken with his head cut off. She was rambling and not making much sense. She was wearing a skin tight mini-skirt that just barely covered her back side and a sort of t-shirt with the neck cut out and her bra straps hanging out (think Flashdance). Oh, and no make-up. Obviously unorganized, she hands to me a scrap of paper that she had done some scribbling on and asks me if I can read what she wrote because she can't.

She begins to tell us the names of businesses she would like us to contact and of course she has no addresses. I finally tell her not to worry, I'll look them up on my laptop. We then ask her for the fliers and such that we need to offer these businesses and she looks at us like we're crazy. "Oh, I thought the boss was going to give those to you. I left a whole stack of those back at the office" (which is 3 hours away). We had talked to this girl 2 days earlier and it was agreed that we would get everything from her once at the hotel.
Now her boyfriend comes out of the bathroom and introduces himself and apologizes for his groggy appearance and explains that he is on powerful pain killers because he has had surgery. Miss PR giggles and confesses that she has been helping him with them. No wonder she's all glassy-eyed.

She then tells us she will show us how we should approach people. She calls a local business and in a very high-pitched voice, talking a mile a minute, she tells the person on the other end of the line what company she is from and that she would like to come there and leave fliers. She didn't even tell him what product she was promoting. Of course the man declined and she hung up with a look of amazement hanging on her face.

My husband finally tells her that he has plenty of marketing experience (he owned a very successful marketing business at one time) and just give us whatever she has and we'll be on our way. She tells us she has an order in at Kinko's and will meet us there and give us what we need then. So off to Kinko's we go.

We arrive at Kinko's and wait about 10 minutes before we see her car pulling in. I figure she must have been changing and making herself presentable. But no. She is still wearing the same outfit, hair pulled up sloppily on top of her head and no make up. OMG! This is how she is going to go out and meet with people to promote a business! No wonder they had only had minimal success to this point.

There were so many things wrong with the whole situation. This promotion was for an event to take place the very next day. Obviously, they had not planned ahead. They waited until the day before to do the major promoting and did not have the media they needed nor a competent PR girl. We decided to just do the best we could.

The next morning we met with her again to get more media that had just arrived. She was dressed and ready to go. Wearing shorts that looked like they belonged to a 9 year old (you could see absolutely everything. I could make a rude comment about a camel, but I shall refrain) and a tight tank top. This time her bra straps weren't showing. She would to have been wearing a bra!
Appearance is such an important part of any business. I was in total shock and wondering if she had looked in the mirror and thought "Yeah, I look good. I'm sure they'll buy what I'm selling!". I guess if she was selling herself...

How important is appearance to you? Not just in promoting yourself or a business, but in every day life. For instance, could you go to the grocery store with curlers in your hair?

SIS Bren


Sisters-in-Sync said...

Good morning,

I'm somewhere right in the middle. I can definitely go to the grocery store in sweats and curlers and sometimes even my pajamas. However, For work/meetings/seminars/classes/dinner/movies...I will dress to impress or at least dress so that people will respect me and take me seriously.

I'm not sure that I could have worked with Miss PR at all. One look at her said it all and the promotion/function was doomed to fail. Her fault? Perhaps, perhaps not. Who hired her and why? Because she was cheap?(get it?) As we all know, sometimes you have to spend money to make money and having the right people in place is THE most important part of being successful. Now in another line of work, she may prevail, but obviously this was the wrong place/job for her.

SIS Barb

Anonymous said...

For me, dressing for work is a science. I have to walk that fine line between sexy and professional. I must look like I am in charge without looking too "hard" or intimidating. People always tell me that my look changes very drastically very quickly. So, I pay attention to all the little details, making sure I am not too much one way or the other. The makeup, the hair, the clothes, the all matters!!

I gave up on trying to look good going to the store or running errands a long time ago! Just way too much work. Right now I am going to pick up the girls from school and go to the store. My hair is wet, not an ounce of makeup... I better make sure I remembered deodorant!!!


Tori Lennox said...

Wow. I'm just... dumbfounded.

Sisters-in-Sync said...

Barb and Brandy,

I'm with you. Most of the time, Jerry and I are on our way home from work when we visit the grocery store. We always joke about what people must think of us. We're usually covered in paint, or thin set, or grout, or tar, you name it, we're usually wearing it. But we're way too exhausted to go home, shower and put on something decent, and then do our shopping. I always just pray we don't run into someone we know.

SIS Bren

Sisters-in-Sync said...


My reaction was the same as yours when I saw her the second day with the shorty shorts and no bra! Some people can get by without a bra, but this girl had a lot too much goin on to just leave them hanging.

SIS Bren

Beth Ciotta said...

Wow. What a story. I could see it all in my head like an episode of a TV show. Funny now, but at the time, I can only imagine your shock and frustation. I give you and Jerry a lot of credit for hanging in. Not sure I would have had the patience.

That said, I don't bother much with makeup around the house or for going to the grocery store. But when business is involved, whether I'm working at the library, attending a writing conference or booksigning, or meeting with my agent or editor, I ALWAYS dress to impress. Meaning like a professionl (and not the kind who wear spandex). Professional doesn't mean a suit per se, in fact I lean toward funky, but funky professional. Love the Vera Wang line at Kohls. Cool designer fashion for moderate prices. Oh, and I'm careful to dress appropriately, as in not showing too much. When you've got a job to do, you want to be taken seriously. Miss PR didn't have a clue.

SIS Beth

Olga said...

Wow on the PR girl. It's impressive that in spite of everything you still tried to do your best. As for outfits in general, I believe in the saying "dress for success." What can I say? I like being classy.

Taylor said...

Yikes, sounds like a real frustrating situation! Sorry you had to deal with all that Brenda! As for appearances, I try to dress and look nice but after awhile of having the same clothes the effect wears off. Looks like some shopping is in order for me! And as for appearances: I'm in college, so you see the whole spectrum of fashion on campus. Some people look like they walked right out of bed and into the streets sometimes haha.

Sisters-in-Sync said...


I love the way you dress. Even when you're being casual, you still look hip and tasteful.


Yes! Dress to impress. Especially when you are trying to gain something.


I know what you mean by having the same clothes to deal with. That happens to me a lot. I feel like I am constantly wearing the same clothes and am always trying to figure out if the same people will see me in the same clothes. I would love to have a huge wardrobe where I only wore the same clothes occasionally. And by that, I mean once every six months!

SIS Bren

flchen1 said...

Wow. I'm speechless!

OK, not so much, but I can't imagine approaching a job so unprofessionally. I'm definitely not the best dresser (I actually do better if my sister dresses me ;)), but I do know that appearances can be pretty important. I typically dress pretty casually because I'm running around doing "mom" stuff, but do pull it together when necessary :)

Post a Comment