Agency boss slams ‘time wasting’ self-promoters at industry events, ‘If you say ‘game changer’ without justification, I will slap you’

Tony Ahn speaking at the Social Media Summit 2012

Tony Ahn speaking at the Social Media Summit in Manila, 2012

A PR agency head has spoken out against media and marketing executives who speak at industry events to promote themselves and their companies without offering their audience anything new or original to learn from.

In a post on his Facebook page, Tony Ahn, owner and founder of Manila-based PR firm Tony Ahn & Co, said that such people who presented case studies of their work without sharing learnings, and who used marketing buzzwords to trumpet their success stories, were “wasting his time”.

He wrote: “I attend professional conference seminars/presentations to learn new things. If you stand up there telling me to “get back to basics,” you’re wasting my time.”

“If you cover a topic that hit the blogosphere recently and you’ve added no new insights, you’re wasting my time.”

“If your presentation is mostly award submission videos of the campaigns you’ve done, you’re wasting my time,” he said.

He went on to say that he would “slap” any presenter who used the words “game changing” or “disruptive” to describe something that had not been deemed notable enough to be covered by independent news outlets.

“If you present case studies that pretty much show your campaign was successful, without adding any special insights that will inform how my agency plans or executes campaigns, you’re wasting my time,” he said.

“And if you say “disruptive” or “game changing” without referencing something so notable that it has had independent news coverage, I will slap you,” Ahn wrote.

Ahn himself speaks at industry events, such as last year’s Unilab Social Media Summit, the British Chamber of Commerce and at De La Salle University, where he is a lecturer on digital PR and marketing. He recently attended events such as the Ad Summit in the Philippines, which was held in May this year.

His comments come soon after Vaasu Gavarasana, the former head of business marketing at Yahoo!, waged a one-man campaign for the industry to cut down on the number of events and avoid clashing dates.


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