This is the fourth of six articles in the “Six PR Tactics that Grab Attention Like ‘Orange is the New Black’” series.


Cred-i-bil-i-ty, noun – The quality of being convincing or believable.

Credibility answers the question, “Why should I listen to you?”

“Orange is the New Black” is based on a memoir by Piper Kerman titled, “Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison.”

The book is a compilation of real-life events that make it all the more interesting. Every shock and awe is something that really happened. Because it’s based on real events, OITNB is as much educational as it is entertaining.

A credible voice makes a powerful statement: the message is real.

When watching a scary movie you can simply dismiss any resulting anxieties with the consolation that it’s not real; it can’t happen to you — there’s no such thing as zombies or vampires. On the other hand, a true, credible story like OITNB cannot be dismissed. It hangs around and provokes deep thought, inner reflection and perspective.

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Credibility is why public relations is more effective at selling a product or service than marketing or advertising.

Imagine you see a commercial that asserts Cruise Line A has the best food and friendliest service. Would you believe it? Of course not! Just because they paid to say they’re the best doesn’t mean it’s true.

Now imagine that you read an article in a popular travel blog about the blogger’s experience on Cruise Line A. The blogger has previously cruised with Cruise Line B and Cruise Line C. She says, without a doubt, she had the best experience on Cruise Line A. Would you believe her? Probably. At the very least you’d hold that information in higher regard than the television commercial.

One unique function of public relations is to find credible, third-party sources to deliver the client’s message to the audience. It’s honest and can be very effective.

A message backed by credibility is a message that’s made to stick, just like “Orange is the New Black.”

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