In today’s market it is getting harder and harder to break through the clutter and get your marketing message heard. Public relations creates a “buzz” that gets people talking about you. It allows for transparency and credibility in a cost-effective way. I’m often asked what is the difference between public relations and traditional advertising. Here are the top 5 differences:
Paid Space vs. Free Coverage
ADVERTISING: You pay for the advertising space. This typically requires repetition and an extensive ad budget.
PUBLIC RELATIONS: This is free publicity – you convince the media that they should cover your story, news release, event, etc. It is often referred to as “earned” media.
Control & Credibility
ADVERTISING: Since you are paying for the space, you have control of your message. For the most part, you also have the ultimate say regarding copy, creative, positioning, etc.
PUBLIC RELATIONS: While you do lose control of what the media will say, a good publicist knows how to influence positive exposure. Also, an article in a newspaper or an interview provides third-party endorsement and credibility for your product or service.
ADVERTISING: If you don’t want to get lost in the shuffle, you may need to reach deep into your pockets. To get a premium position can be very pricey, but it is guaranteed.
PUBLIC RELATIONS: Besides the cost of your publicist or PR Team, there is no additional cost for the placement. However, you could end up paying a publicist without getting the desired media time.
ADVERTISING: With advertising you have the opportunity to be creative and make yourself stand out. A good copywriter can create slogans/jingles that will affect people and stick with them for a long time.
PUBLIC RELATIONS: Public relations also requires creativity, but in a different way. A good publicist needs to be able to “spin” your story to attract the attention of reporters. Public relations can help you reach your target audience many different ways.
ADVERTISING: Most advertising agencies can help you with your SEO and online ads. You can even advertise on social networking sites.
PUBLIC RELATIONS: Most public relations firms are able to help you build social media campaigns and interact with your audience.