Stone Roses reunion: as easy to pr as the Second Coming

This week’s announcement that the Stone Roses are set to reform is one of those pr stories that will sell itself. No clever digital public relations strategies needed here. The traditional media will lap it up and social networks will go wild with discussion without the need for any nudging. Whether those comments are cynical, adoring, or indifferent it doesn’t matter – so long as there’s chatter.

And no doubt tickets will sell like the proverbial hotcakes when they go on sale on Friday morning.  It’s what the world is waiting for after all. Maybe.

So the agency charged with PRing the announcement, Murray Chalmers, didn’t exactly have its work cut out. Organise a press conference, invite a few select journalists and bloggers, sit back and watch the ensuing media frenzy. It helps that the band themselves are not exactly shrinking violets. The chances of their being any awkward silences when four mouthy Mancunians are faced with an array of microphones are next to zero. I was, however, slightly disappointed they chose not to have the press conference in their native Manchester. In the words of the late great Tony Wilson: where’s your excess of civic pride lads?

Still, three nights at Heaton Park is a lot of bums on grass. And the agency will no doubt be thinking of ways to maintain the momentum in the run up to the concerts.

There’ll be lots of news hooks along the way: announcements of the full line up, rumours about new material, perhaps some behind the scenes rows if we’re lucky, news of the rest of the world tour and the inevitable festival appearances.

Here’s some other suggestions they could try:

  • Film the band in rehearsal and post some clips on youtube.
  • Get the band members to tweet and blog like crazy about how the run up to the gigs is going. Perhaps they could have a tweet up where fans suggest the best song for the encore or the ideal set list? Or perhaps they could tell us how they’re going to spend all the cash!
  • Get them to guest edit the Today programme at Christmas. Or better still do the C4 alternative Christmas message!
  • Secure a guest appearance on X Factor. (Ok, that last one’s a joke).

One thing’s certain: ad spend will surely be close to zero, and the traditional media will probably only now play a side role now they’ve got the ball rolling. But when the story is this good why waste money on advertising?

The Stone Roses reunion may not be quite the Second Coming. But in terms of pr it’s probably about as easy as it gets.

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