Perhaps it should not come as a surprise that an event, organized by the Iranian Public Relations Institute is being held in Tehran, Iran on October 28-29, 2013, which is billed as the 10th International Conference on Public Relations. Iran has been brilliant at media manipulation and managing the media. 

As CEO of 5WPR, a top 25 American PR firm, I received an invitation although was surprised. In many ways, while Iran is a bad place, there is so much for Public Relations executives to learn from the Iranians, and their President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The Iranians are masters at PR – Ahmadinejad dresses well, smiles and is a masterful “voice of evil.”  He has a great sense of timing and what will gain him the needed publicity for whatever his goal of the moment may be.  He is a master at media manipulation. 

When the Iranian Red Crescent Society’s Relief and Rescue Organization offered help to America in the aftermath of the horror of Hurricane Sandy, we understood that they knew gimmick and stunt PR too. And it has happened on numerous occasions. Whether it is his alarming speech a few years ago at Columbia University, which was very smart PR or Iran’s continued building of a nuclear bomb all the while charming some United Nations and even U.S. fools, Iran seems to know how to play to the public to keep the true facts from emerging.

The upcoming PR conference in Iran anticipates hundreds attending to learn more about “a golden opportunity to practice “integrated public relations.” As the website for the Iranian PR conference says “in order to coordinate and align all PR activities in each point of contact with audience toward a single goal, we use the concept of integrated public relations. This is an approach to leading and integration of planning, implementation and monitoring of messages.”

While Iran may be hosting a PR conference and be brilliant at PR, great publicity isn’t always truthful or real.  Its image and positioning.

Sorry to the Iranian PR society, this Jewish-American CEO of a PR firm won’t be visiting Tehran anytime soon. Wondering if any of my colleagues will learn from the Iranians up-close.