So, you know all about PR and the way it works, but WHY is it so important?
Businesses need public relations for a variety of reasons, which this blog post will run through. My News Desk wrote a great blog on this also, read it here.
This Forbes article says that "Advertising is what you pay for, publicity is what you pray for." If Forbes is stressing the importance of PR, it must be a pretty big deal.
You can also read our own blog post on the difference between advertising and PR here.
💥So, let's get into it.💥
🟡 Managing reputation and public opinion
To gage an audience, it is vital to make sure your reputation with the public is pristine. PR professionals ensure that this is done. They know how important it is to have a good reputation, and this is what they strive to achieve for their client's businesses. If your business is being featured in trusted and popular publications, this will have a positive effect on the way in which your brand is perceived. For example, if you see a beauty brand featured in Cosmopolitan, you will automatically perceive the company as successful and reliable, because it has been published by a credible source.
🟡 Online presence
Society now is completely engrossed in digital media. This includes social media, online shopping, and online news. Everything is online, so businesses should be too. Part of the job when you work in PR is keeping up to date on trends, meaning PR pros know how to make sure your business has a substantial online presence, which will heighten visibility. Nowadays, it's hard to just put products on a shelf and have them sell.
You really do need to push your online presence.
🟡 Raising brand awareness
Another part of the job is raising brand awareness for clients. In return, this boosts the credibility of the business they are promoting, as the PR pro will create relationships and trust with the public and consumers. With these promotions, be it interviews or press releases, you're establishing yourself as an an expert in your field.
🟡 Community ties
If you dive into local community activities, whether it's promoting local causes or sponsoring other local businesses, you are increasing your reliability. Your PR professional will know the importance of this, and will guide you into how to increase community relationships. Charity work is a great way to not only help good causes, but to also build your brand awareness. Also, gaining these relationships will increase your consumer audience. If they see a local business doing good in the community, they are more likely to use your business over a competitor. In other words, if you help them, they'll help you.
A great blog that discusses this is over on Insight Success, read it here.
🟡 PR can be more beneficial than paid advertising
"Most business executives dub PR as 'free advertising.' This could not be farther from the truth. It neither is advertising, nor is free."- INC.
If you're paying for advertising, you're essentially paying for people to sing your praises. People know that you have paid for this, so it is less credible. Yet, with PR, your business is getting editorial coverage from credible sources which is going to set the precedent that not only are you an expert in your field, but that your business is trustworthy (this is another way your credibility will grow and grow).
Another great read to learn about the importance of PR is on Social Ape Marketing, you can check it out here.
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About the Author:
Courtney is a PR assistant and content creator trainee for GuidedPR. She has 7 published articles in her universities newspaper, The Founder, about lifestyle. She has also created her own blogging website where she reviews books, music and lifestyle products. She has a BA in English Literature from Royal Holloway and is starting a MA in News Journalism.
Find her LinkedIn here.