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Public Relations (PR)

What is Public Relations (PR)?

Public relations is the process of managing communications between a business and its public, or constituents, which can include:

  • Customers
  • Employees
  • Vendors
  • Stockholders
  • Influencers
  • Government officials
  • Neighbors

It is a marketing tactic used to inform and educate the public.

Public Relations Strategies

Within public relations are several strategies for communicating with the public, including:

  • Media relations – working with and through media outlets to share news and information about your business, its products and services.
  • Sponsorships – providing financial support for an event, team, or organization in exchange for recognition.
  • Internal communications – communicating with employees and vendors using tools like newsletters, social media, and town meetings, to keep them informed regarding important company business.
  • Special events – hosting or supporting public events that heighten awareness of your business.
  • Tradeshows – attending conferences, workshops, and expositions with a goal of increasing awareness of your company and its offerings.
  • Premiums – producing products featuring your company’s name or logo to be given to the public.
  • Social media – managing outgoing and incoming messages via blogs, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram with a goal of increasing awareness and positive perception.

PR is Not Advertising

Many people use the term PR and advertising interchangeably, when the terms do not mean the same thing.

PR involves sharing information with the public using platforms that do not require a payment, such as social media or through press releases shared with magazines and newspapers. PR professionals package information and disseminate it in the hopes that it will be organically shared.

Advertising, on the other hand, involves paying for space in the media, or on websites, and controlling the message that is conveyed.

The goal of public relations is to shape public perception of a business, presenting a positive image through various strategies to its various constituents.

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