Google Fiber, PR, and Utah

These three things have nothing in common right? Wrong.

Recently the city of Provo in Utah Valley, a place  I call home, announced it would make a huge announcement that would change the city entirely by putting us on the map. Great, I thought…another mall or maybe even a commercial airline terminal at our airport (it’s hardly a landing strip). The morning of the big announcement came and I sat waiting for what was to come. The mayor stood with the governor and a few city council members and unveiled the posters that loomed behind them. I immediately read “Google Fiber.”

All this time I’ve spent sitting through the buildup and I get newer high speed internet? I felt just a little deflated. However, I trust Mayor John Curtis has a master plan in mind and I wanted to hear more.

File:Salt Lake City panorama.jpg

Days passed by as I listened to all of my techie friends drone on and on about the implications this will have on life as we know it, but all the time I had a sense why Provo needed to make a big deal of this: Google is a name that everyone recognizes. This means that Utah (a place that some people can’t even point out on a map) now receives some recognition for being the major tech hub that it is. We are home to a decent number of tech companies such as Adobe, Mozy, Domo, Novell, Money Desktop, and Qualtrics after all. All eyes are soon to be on us. This, in turn, will draw those eyes to the amazing industry that Utah has always fostered, though many times unnoticed.

So what does this have to do with PR? Allow me to explain. Many times events pass by that we discredit because they do not seem to have anything to do with traditional PR (media relations, CSR PR, need I say more?). Riding the wave of interest around events, issues, and trends can direct attention to your website, blog (hint hint), and social media, thus bolstering traffic, and if you’re lucky, maybe a new client or two.

From the perspective of our Utah PR firm, it is fair to say that we cannot expect every little thing that happens to be huge news. Here in Utah, we happened to get lucky with the attention drawn by the announcement of Google Fiber. That being said, it does benefit public relations professionals to keep their eyes out for events that may be good keywords for Google searches, etc.

At the end of the day, the public relations field is an industry that is constantly changing. How can we expect to be on the top of our game if we are not noting the changes taking place around us every day?

About the Author:

As founder of PilmerPR, John Pilmer, APR serves as a PR and marketing communications advisor for both emerging and established companies. He offers customers more than 20 years of results-driven business PR and marketing experience. John and the firm have provided PR consultation and campaigns for clients such as Mozy, Novell, AdvancedMD, Certiport, NextPage, ElectraTherm, Altiris, Avamar, EmergeCore Networks, FSLogic, INVISUS, 10x Marketing, MWI, Project Insight, REIC, Seastone, US Synthetic and Funding Universe (now Lendio), among others.
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