Who put Muse in charge?

27 Jul

I agree with Polly Cziok, head of communications and consultation for the London Borough of Hackney in this week’s PR Week, on Teignbridge District Council‘s leader inviting Muse to run its services for a day after they carried the Olympic torch in the area. It’s a loose invitation with an even looser brief which I doubt will amount to much.

Yes – the rock stars come from the area. But, how engaged are they with the issues that matter? However much you repeat “fame won’t change me”, I’m sure five top-selling albums do just a little bit.

What’s wrong with the project is that it screams ‘stunt’. One that isn’t very well thought through.

What can be achieved in one day? When I started my job I had a week’s worth of inductions. If councils are anything to go by, they’ll be lucky to have scratched the surface of council ‘do’s and don’ts’ by the afternoon. But, in reality, one day is probably all Muse can spare.

Teignbridge council leader Jeremy Christophers is keen to get the band working with young people on energy depletion – yawn. Apparently it’s a theme in their latest album. Wouldn’t a more natural fit have been music? Workshops with young people – singing, songwriting and production? Ideas shouldn’t be complicated or forced. Sometimes it’s better to just roll with the obvious.

Using influential ambassadors to drive change is often successful, but a detailed plan with aims, objectives and how you will meet them is vital. Christophers did the big reveal too soon. He made a news-grabbing claim without substance.

He should now feel under pressure to pull this off and make it a success.

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