Trickle Down is not for PR (or much else)

Politics is often a great teacher.  Case and point:

In the 1980's President Ronald Reagan popularized the trickle down theory by using it to lead his economic policy. The thought behind the theory is if you provide tax cuts or other benefits to businesses and rich individuals in the belief that this will indirectly benefit the broad population. Though many argue trickle down economics worked for the US, there are a few facts that can't be ignored:

  • Personal income taxes of the top earners dropped from 70% to 28% in 7 years
  • Social security and medicare taxes increased
  • The United States went from the largest credit grantor to the largest debtor
  • Real wages declined during the Reagan presidency

 Translation: Providing benefits to those on top does not guarantee those below will reap rewards.

Though this is an economic theory the lessons can be translated to public relations and marketing. Providing information to those at the top of the information chain does not guarantee that those at the bottom will receive the messages or that the message will be delivered with the intention it was sent.  You can't afford for your messages to be ignored or miscommunicated.  President Barack Obama took that same position during his 2008 Presidential campaign.  He didn't deliver messages to the media and wait for them to translate that to their audiences; he used social media to reach his core audiences directly. It was a genius strategy that helped him secure his current position as president of the United States of America.

The lesson. Don't wait for others to tell your story or give them the power to craft your message. Go straight to the source and tell them what you want them to know in your words. Use the tools available to you to go directly to your audiences.  When you do, you will reap great rewards.