Kate and Jon Gosselin have been portrayed recently as the “Worst Parents of the Year.” With Kate being known as the “Absentee parent” due to Dancing With the Stars (Kicked off Week 5) and Jon being off at bars flirting with the new girl of the week. The Gosselin couple has become a Public Relations nightmare. The most important question is and will always be, how will this affect their eight children? When the hit TLC show Jon and Kate Plus 8 ended due to the ugly separation of Jon and Kate it all “hit rock bottom.”
Now say I was a Public Relations professional and I wanted to create a campaign to restore the “disastrous duos reputation” into the once beloved couple and amazing parents they used to be. You may think impossible. But I think anything can be done if you work hard (very hard in this case) and have a plan. To reverse the absentee mom and the bar hopping dad’s reputation, I would try and have the paparazzi catch them both acting like parents. Not such a novel idea, but obviously not something Jon and Kate have been doing on their own. In this case, both Jon and Kate would have to be committed to this or it wouldn’t work. They would also have to stop going on reality shows, doing interviews and going to bars. They would have to go back to being parents. Jon and/or Kate separately and together would need to be caught /or have it “leaked” that they were doing fun and appropriate activities with their children. These activities don’t have tobeanything special. They can be simply playing in their yard, going for ice cream even going grocery shopping. As long as the activity is seen as wholesome and happy it is a “win – win” situation. The children win and Jon and Kate’s reputation improves.
By using the PRSA Ethics Code, which includes, truth, accuracy, fairness, and responsibility to the public you demonstrate that Jon and Kate are both being there for their kids. You show that they are not off doing something crazy. The strategies that I would use to meet this goal of both parents being with their kids, is making sure the public can finally see the Gosselin parents caring about the bringing up of their 9 year old twins and their 5 year old sextuplets. I would need to send the family out into the public eye just to show how well they can do when they are not dancing on the ballroom floor or grinding it up in a bar.
Unfortunately, with all of the best intention this campaign plan can still backfire. First of all we are already dealing with a “broken family.” Therefore, there is an increased risk of a mistake or a slip up. The slip up can be on purpose (to set their spouse up) or purely accidental (human nature). If Kate goes into a store and the media catches her screaming or demanding her children to do something or go somewhere the media will not take that for just a little slip up. The next time you go into the supermarket Star and/or The Enquirer is going to have the newest headline reading “Kate Gosselin: Couldn’t Control Her Husband, She’s Moved on to Her Kids?” Next if Jon takes a step into a bar or dinner with a “lady” friend. The image of the two parents and the family is the ruined. This could be an easy fix or a Public Relation Disaster.
The bottom line is that Jon and Kate Gosselin just need to learn to be there for their children. They need to put their own agendas aside. They need to be home to take care and watch their 8 beautiful children grow up. It is not enough to say you care if you are never there for them. With their parents always in the spotlight these eight children are going to need some serious help if this insanity doesn’t stop! You can try and try again to make them look good. HOWEVER, they have to learn to do what is right at all times not only when it makes them look good. Only then will they be on the right track back to a “normal” family life for them and their children. Jon and Kate…now we just have to wait.