Maybe because it’s the holidays, or maybe because I’ve seen the ubiquitous classic movie “White Christmas” too many times (already), but I’m dreaming of an effective public relations campaign this season.

For those of you who have not seen “White Christmas,” SPOILER ALERT: two army comrades (Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye) become a successful song-and-dance team after the war. They become romantically involved with a sister act (Rosemary Clooney and Vera-Ellen) and team up to save a failing Vermont inn owned by their former commanding general. 

You might be wondering – how can you draw a connection between a Bing Crosby Christmas caper and strategic communications? Yes, Virgina, there is a link. Below are a few things “White Christmas” can teach us about public relations:

  • Have a goal
    • Bing and team decide the best way to bring business to General Waverly’s inn and show him that he isn’t forgotten is to put on a musical, and bring the veterans of the general’s division to Vermont for the show.
    • PR Bottom Line: When planning a mission-focused event, it’s important to use an innovative model to bring attention to a pressing issue.  
  • Recruit a multitalented team
    • The four main characters are triple-threats (for the most part, I’m looking at you Vera-Ellen), and bring in an extended supporting cast to perform in the musical.
    • PR Bottom Line: Assemble a diverse team, and make sure everyone’s talents are being used to their highest capacity.
  • Spokespeople are key
    • Bing becomes the spokesperson for the event because of his fame and connection to other veterans.
    • PR Bottom Line: Make sure your spokesperson is relevant to your brand. And super dreamy
  • Know your audience & use the right channels
    • Spokesperson Bing pitches his old army buddies on a national TV variety show to get them to visit the Vermont inn in support of the general.
    • PR Bottom Line: Know where your audience gets its information and leverage those channels.