Read Mark Borkowski's very entertaining history of PR, the Fame Formula, while I was on hols. Brilliant (particularly the first half)
Some fantastic (and quite scurrilous tales) about the early days of Showmen like Barnum and the Fixers of the Hollywood Golden Years and – for me at least – a welcome counterblast to the widespread idea of the slick considered communications manipulator that dominates our thinking about marketing generally.
Particularly in the light of the renewed interest in stunts, branded content and participative marketing techniques: we can all learn a heap from Barnum and his Jumbo-sized pranks and his glee in creating experiences, branded content and marketing activity that does all that we ask ours to do. But mostly it's his glee that's clear….
Why don't we all just get over ourselves – accept this side of our game – and stop acting like social workers or brain surgeons – to paraphrase that fine band, We Are Not Scientists – and embrace our inner PTB.
Good on, ya Mark for bringing these guys back to our attention and sticking a drawing-pin under our over serious a*****.
For another sort of fame, go here for your free gift