In a world where public relations (PR) represents editorial, content, social media and strategy (among many other terms), you’d be forgiven for asking, what really is PR?
The simple explanation? Storytelling.
PR is an element of the marketing-communications mix that enables people, companies, brands and charitable organisations to share stories and information with those that matter most to them.
Like any good story, PR content offers insights and commentary from ‘behind the scenes’, telling you something you didn’t know about an organisation or person. Executed well, PR content can increase visibility and build awareness of a brand or company, as well as help to maintain a positive reputation amongst stakeholders, particularly in a time of issue or crisis.
A key pathway to sharing PR stories is by working with mainstream media. This includes print, broadcast radio and TV and online outlets. Journalists and PR consultants work hand-in-hand, with the media often seeking stories from a range of sources, and PR consultants sharing such information from a range of industries.
It’s likely that as you sit down to watch your evening news, or read the local paper, there will be an element of PR that has contributed to the bulletin. From updates on water conservation and restrictions, to local event promotion, the media provides a great vehicle to reach more people with your message.
When developing a PR strategy, it’s important to consider some simple truths like ‘who, what, when, where, how and why’ to help to unlock ideas for content and the best methods for distribution.
For example, TV news or feature programs can be great for broadscale awareness and are helpful when you want to share your message far and wide. However, it’s important your story is ‘newsworthy and timely’ for this medium. In other instances, it may be appropriate to think about ‘quality over quantity’, targeting more specific publications or outlets or developing a piece of feature content, which might not have a ‘daily deadline’ like the news.
Remember, PR is not advertising. In working with media to secure storytelling opportunities, the space is not paid for. As such, the media are responsible for producing a fair, balanced story – one that is less likely to feature heavy brand mentions or product pushes. You can be assured that if you’re trying to secure media coverage that is more promotional than it is educational or informative, you’ll be promptly re-directed to the advertising department!
The Marketing Clan provides PR services to clients looking to consider both broad scale and targeted storytelling opportunities across a range of industries.
With a plethora of communication vehicles now within arm’s reach, a PR strategy can be integrated into an existing campaign or marketing plan, to enhance your visibility and message distribution. If you’d like to talk more about your story, we’d love to hear it.