Author(s): Tim Burt
'Dark Art' lifts the lid on the covert world of business and financial public relations. Tim Burt, former award-winning journalist at the 'Financial Times', charts the upheaval of an industry that generates multi-million dollar revenues for mainly private, and tightly held, agencies around the world. He sets out to explain the new tactics shaping strategic communications in the 21st century, and questions whether the industry can live up to its promises in a world where the media itself is facing an existential threat. As the industry struggles to adapt, Burt investigates the impact of the evolving digital environment, and the likely winners and losers from the old 'dark art' of spin. What emerges is a tale of corporate intrigue, where larger-than-life millionaires agonise about their reputations, where business promises are made and broken, and where demands grow for strategic communications services that can be trusted. Based on high-profile examples of contemporary corporate crises, this is a unique insider view on a discreet industry at a time of unprecedented change. 'Dark Art' examines the challenges facing the PR industry and sets out a vision of how the industry might evolve.
"An exposure of PR's 'dark arts;' an analysis of recent turbulence in the great persuasion industry and, ultimately, an argument for a more responsible approach to reputation enhancement." --"Financial Times" "Drawing on first-hand experience of sticky moments at a clutch of blue-chip companies, Burt paints a stark picture of life behind the boardroom panelling." "Guardian"
Formerly an award-winning journalist at the 'Financial Times', Tim Burt is now managing partner at StockWell Communications, where he provides strategic counsel to some of the world's largest companies. He is a former partner at Brunswick, one of the world's largest PR agencies. He lives in London.
Contents vii Introduction Part one: The Great Persuaders 1 1. The Age of Anxiety 3 2. The Feudal System 12 3. Managing the Media 21 4. Barter and Persuasion 30 5. Battle for Scoops 39 6. Return on Investment 48 7. Rules of the Club 57 Part two: The Reckoning 67 8. Crisis, What Crisis? 69 9. The Five Stages of Grief 77 10. Media in Peril 86 11. Digital Divide 95 12. The Launderette 105 13. The Tower of Babel 114 14. Intelligence Agencies 124 15. Talent Pool 133 16. Quadrennial Test 143 Part three: Good Reputations; Bad Reputations 153 17. Reputation Management 155 18. Risky Business 165 19. Constant Vigilance 175 20. Securing a Narrative 184 21. New Rules of Engagement 193 Index 205