Friday, October 19, 2012

Edelman's response, claim etc

Dear Readers,
The following is Edelman KL's response to my posting on Monday here. The PR firm said it posted the response directly on my blog but, unfortunately, it did not reach me. I retrieved the following from its website here, thanks to a link at The Mole :-
Response to Comments Made by Rocky’s Bru Blog Post on Edelman
October 16, 2012

The recent blog post on Edelman posted by blogger Rocky’s Bru generated a lively debate among various interest groups. Read below for Edelman’s reply. 

The recent blog post on Edelman posted by blogger Rocky’s Bru generated a lively debate among various interest groups. In reply to various comments made, Edelman has posted their response directly onRocky’s Bru blog as well as The Mole (subject to moderator approval).

The full response here:  

The Edelman Trust Barometer is a Proprietary study on what drives Trust in the four key institutions of state (Government, Media, Business and NGO). This is a global survey cond​ucted by StrategyOne(Edelman Berland), a global market research institute, consistently over the past 12 years and encompasses 30,000 respondents in 25 key markets throughout the world. In Malaysia, Edelman launched this study for the first time in 2012, fully aware that ‘Trust’ forms the basis of any lasting relationship. The study obtained feedback from 1000 Malaysians (general public) and has an overlay of 200 informed public (college educated, media savvy, urbanites) calculated to reflect the general population of Malaysia. This is a first-of-its-kind study for Malaysians by Malaysians.

The data for our initial year reflects how Malaysians rate trust in the four institutions measured. The results, in a nutshell, place Malaysia in a neutral Trust zone, with trust in government here very much in line with global results. It will be useful to see how Malaysians perceive Trust as related to these institutions in the upcoming surveys.
What we hope to achieve is intelligent, apolitical discourse on how and where trust can be earned by listening to the feedback of our fellow Malaysians. This is not about anyone preaching, but solely listening to what the sampled Malaysians are saying. Our hypothesis on what the data means remains our professional opinion. Nothing more. The data that will be collated from the 2013 edition – which will be the 2nd study for Malaysia - due for release in early 2013, and years following, would certainly prove interesting as we can now track the baseline on all the metrics measured. The global results are presented at the WEF at Davos by Richard Edelman every year.

Rocky had commented on the ‘monopoly’ on Government contracts.  Fact is, Edelman has been invited to and won business against other multinational and local PR firms solely on merit. To be absolutely clear, there are no ‘recommendations.’ We strive to go in with insight and research-based strategies and strong understanding of the client’s requirements. My humble opinion - three government clients hardly constitute a monopoly. Let me tell you we have lost a few too, but that’s the prerogative of the client to decide.

This is a firm that is focused on recruiting and training bright young Malaysians in the field of strategic communications, providing professional and cross-cultural experience that is incomparable. To knock these hard working young Malaysians, who make up 90% of our current team of 35, would be to unfairly dismiss the professional PR talent pool that we are working to cultivate.

I invite anyone who feels aggrieved or ‘heard from sources’ to email and I guarantee a personal response. Provide name and contact details, so we can respond accordingly with context and transparency.

Edelman has been in Malaysia since 1984, and we are proud to play our part to upskill and develop the PR services sector in Malaysia to international standards, in partnership with fellow professionals in the media. On that note, I am more than happy to engage and discuss the results of our inaugural survey with you and anyone else who is interested to provide constructive feedback.

Raymond Siva
Managing Director
Edelman Malaysia

Read also Edelman claims study on public distrust in Govt presented to the Prime Minister's Office


  1. Anonymous11:44 pm

    Dear Sir

    Since you pride yourself as being a global PR firm of impeccable credentials providing strictly professional PR consultancy services etc based on in-depth market research as well insights gleaned from empirical data collated via instruments derived from well-researched strategies, I have a few questions to ask:

    1.What is the methodology being adopted? Would it be solely quantitative in nature or would it be an eclectic fusion of both quantitative and qualitative in orientation to triangulate the findings.

    2.What are the rationales underpinning the selection of 1000 Malaysians? Is the selection modeled on random sampling or stratified sampling or other such modalities?

    3.200 college savvy respondents are claimed to be representative of the Malaysian population. Which segments of the population and how representative are they? Their ethnic profile, incomes and other relevant demographic profiles will further shed light on exactly who they represent to allow for accurate extrapolations to be made. Further, you claim they being informed...what do you mean by this. Does it posit sufficient and balanced exposure to different perspectives?

    4.Are provisions inbuilt into the methodology to verify whether the data so obtained are reliable?

    5.Can you provide insights into Items in the survey, on what rationales were they framed, their construct validity and other such related issues.What are the statistical models to be adopted to analyse the findings? Are they robust enough? Will there be a reliance on one approach i.e., parametric over non-parametric, for instance?

    6.Most importantly, the timing of the survey and publications of its results. Is it merely a coincidence or is it designed so as to fall approximately within the GE 13 temporal framework and is thus designed to have a pernicious impact on that event? Are there hidden agendas at play, given that accessibility to future contracts and the like are very much reliant on the outcomes?

    Clarification of these issues and provision of other related supplementary information on the survey would be most welcome.

    Thank you.

    Warrior 231

  2. trifling-jester8:37 am

    rocky, as frank sinatry once said: "aint that a kick in the head!!"

  3. I've only been living in Malaysia a short while but I know that traditional media here generally fall into one of two categories - establishment (i.e. pro-government) and non-establishment (i.e. pro-opposition).

    The Malaysians I know and work with are well aware of this dynamic and choose the media they read accordingly.

    The problem with the Edelman Trust Survey is it has asked Malaysians to rate trust in media generally. This can’t be done in Malaysia where this duopoly of political views exists. People have loyalty to the media they read so when you ask them to rate their trust in media, without specifying which media, it is impossible to know if they are answering about the media they consume, media on the other side of the political spectrum, or media generally, which given the duopoly of views published cannot provide definitive research findings.

    This dynamic is not unique to Malaysia. From my experience I know it is common in developing nations. Take South Korea for example, (albeit recently a fully developed nation). It's media landscape also falls broadly into two camps: establishment/ pro-business media, and pro-trade union media. The competing media agendas polarise readers into camps which support/reinforce their pre-existing worldview.

    A different approach to trust research could be to research what media people are consuming and how much they trust that media. You can verify the trust measurement by researching the impact media consumed by survey respondents has on shaping opinions (i.e. you might not consciously trust the media but sub-consciously it is forming your opinions).

    For Malaysian GLCs and businesses that are interested in developing communications strategies predicated on a less 'black and white' understanding of local media than Edelman's approach seems to advocate, there are other, more reputable global PR consultancies in KL which can provide more nuanced perspectives.

  4. Najib memperkasakan Keling25:15 pm

    Pradeep Kumar a kling appointed by Najib to be CEO of Malay company Felda Ventures appointed another keling Siva company as PR.
    What other keling company is Pradeep Kumar going to give CASH to?