Can public relations patronise the rich?

Why isn’t the Ettinger crafted leather key holder for Bentley owners raising my hackles like the Saab “little white bag” from last week?

I do think public relations people working for car companies should have better things to promote than ways of pampering a car key – but pandering to the wishes of the ridiculous rich doesn’t offend me as much as appealing to fashion-obessed young women.

But why does it seem like patronising when directed to women and not when targeting rich Bentley owners?  Do you think it says something more about me, than the car key cases?

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Heather Yaxley PhD

Dr. Heather Yaxley is passionate about sustainable careers, reflective practice and professional development. I am a rhizomatic educator, practitioner, consultant, academic and scholar. As a qualified academic, I teach the CIPR professional qualifications with PR Academy and have experience teaching at various Universities. I run the Motor Industry Public Affairs Association (MIPAA) and my own strategic consultancy. I was awarded by PhD researching Career Strategies in Public Relations by Bournemouth University in 2017. I'm a published author, with books, chapters and academic papers to my name.

2 thoughts on “Can public relations patronise the rich?”

  1. I think because it’s called ‘little’ and has a child like draw string thingy on it, it’s patronising. Now don’t get me wrong, I like little black dresses, etc but I just think this is a bit like being treated like a kid again with your key around your neck for after school.

  2. It is interesting to think about what affects our emotions in this way. I try to explain to older guys I know that the word “lady” is now a bit iffy and we prefer to be called “women”. I love language and how meanings change and can be influenced. In public relations, I’m not sure we always spend sufficient time on the detail of the words we choose. Then as you indicate, there is meaning in visual imagery and what is conveyed by colour, shape, etc.

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