Tag Archives: Max Clifford

Nicola Fisher and the media

The recent catapulting of Nicola Fisher to stardom and a  rumoured £50,000 fee for selling her “story”after being hit by a policeman at the G20 protests raises some interesting PR angles – ones that have been covered in other stories before but are worth looking at again.

I am not going to comment on the right to protest, whether it was excessive force or Nicola Fisher’s decidedly poor contribution to society (on benefits and never worked at 35 years of age; sorry I did for an instance).

The interesting things from a PR point of view is how the media can magnify certain stories – it is not a level all encompassing balanced view of our world, if you were in any doubt and Max Clifford’s involvement:

Perception moulded in the media

The issue of the right to protest in safety, police reactions to provocation and the myriad of causes represented by G20 protesters were discussed and rightly in the media during and after the G20 protests.

But I have just been reading about Police Officer Gary Toms on the Inspector Gadget blog.  Never heard of him?  Gary died tackling a robbery and barely made the media a week ago.  The author points out the distorted focus of our coverage (link above).

Yes the G20 makes headlines and there was video of the incidence to illustrate the story and there were the issues mentioned above, but so little interest in a policeman dying in the course of duty?

You have to accept the media is simply a lens to look at the world and not always “the true picture,” perhaps never a true picture depending on your point of view.

Max Clifford

On YouTube and on a number of blogs there has been a decidedly hostile view of Max Clifford’s participation.

Whether the cynicism he is accused of is of any interest to him or really damages him is doubtful.  The next person with a hit and tell or shenanigans at the FA will probably not be turned down by Max.

But I can’t help thinking that many people confuse his “ethics” and operating style as synonymous with PR professionals.  Of course they are not but it is once again for all of us to redress that record.

Breakfast with Max Clifford

Max Clifford
Max Clifford is known for celebrity based PR, but his agency offers much more. Here Max Clifford dispenses some advice although not on digital PR

This week I had the opportunity of hearing PR legend Max Clifford speak at the Business North West exhibition.

A well-attended talk – there must have been a couple of hundred in the audience –  saw Max speak for an hour.

Much of Max’s talk urged businesses to use PR as a central part of their marketing and sales effort.  He reiterated the point again and again that a good PR man or agency can make a real difference to a business and generate a substantial return in coverage on a reasonable investment.  Max also mentioned clients who had grown, such as Pimlico Plumbers – remember Buster the 100 year old employee in the London marathon? – all thanks to PR.

Max and his agency Max Clifford Associates does more than the Freddie Starr story.  Clients range from banks to property to beauty.  But for saying that Max concentrated on using celebrities to gain coverage.  That is all very well, but can you apply that to salt of the earth B2B accounts? What about Mylene endorsing businesses investigating R&D taxes or Twiggy campaigning for the 2007 Budget capital allowance changes to be reversed?

I think there is a culture difference: you could say Max Clifford is not really B2B, possibly B2C, certainly B2Celebrity.  I think this is the visible part of his agency and much of the work is the press release and well researched feature on celebrity free business issues.

It is clear Max really understands the tabloid press and knows how to use it, both for coverage and to keep people out of the papers, when necessary.  Max’s agency says they are “protection specialists” as well as PR professionals.

Asked about future challenges for PR professionals Max admitted that he was not the most technical of people, as online PR would certainly be on the list.  Why should he argued if he can still work the tabloids as effectively as he has ever done for 40 years?

A few other members of the audience asked for a coffee to discuss their PR issues.  Max if you are reading this I will go one better: a day work shadowing you and I will buy you lunch with a real ale.  What do you say?

Max Clifford in The Guardian

Max Clifford was in The Guardian recently for an in depth interview.

You get the feeling that there is quite a lot of depth to Max, but in three pages and it must be 5,000 words, very little impression seems to be made.

(By the way only 10% of his business is the celebrity stories).

It might be worth getting his autobiography as this just initiates the interest.  AIDA: Awareness, Interest, Desire, Action – my post grad study is paying off!