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  • Writer's pictureTiffany Harder

Powerful Partnerships: Why Public Relations matters in modern marketing.

Updated: Jan 10

Top 5 Reasons Why Public Relations Matters Today

Written by Tiffany Harder

The big P in public relations: Perception.

How does the public see your brand or business?

Not long ago, “Beauty” was defined by young, thin, often fair-skinned models until a brand challenged the definition by shouting its core messaging loud enough for the entire beauty industry to evolve since that game-changing Real Beauty campaign in 2004.

So, the campaign didn’t just advertise Dove’s products; it tackled a social issue head-on, changing how people perceived beauty and, by extension, the Dove brand itself. This wasn’t just about selling more soap or moisturizer; it was about creating a lasting emotional connection with consumers by aligning the brand with values like inclusivity, self-acceptance, and empowerment.

So, how did they do this?

Public Relations. The whole strategy was perception.

Let’s understand why public relations should be considered one of the most powerful tools in building your brand and business.

The Yin and Yang of Marketing and Public Relations

Do marketing and PR both require strategy? Yes.

Creativity Yes?

Persuasion? Absolutely!

So, what is Public Relations? It’s like your brand’s best bud, always there to make you look good to everyone—the public, business partners, and the media. The purpose is to make people trust and like what you’re all about.

What is the role of public relations in marketing? Well, marketing’s your party starter. It’s like, “Hey, buy this now!” PR? That’s your vibe, curator. The cool, subtle voice in the background gives your brand that “feel-good” aura. Sure, PR can crank up the volume, too, like during big press gigs.

So why do you need both? Let’s break it down – Think of PR as your foundation. A strong PR game means your marketing becomes a breeze; people already dig your brand. They’re two sides of the same coin—PR builds the reputation, and marketing seals the deal.

While PR may not always take the lead, it sets the stage for your marketing efforts. Think of your brand’s message as its pulse—shaping public perception and trust. PR amplifies this heartbeat, sending it out across media landscapes, from newsrooms to social feeds to podcasts.

Together? They make your brand unstoppable.

Modern vs. Traditional Public Relations

Traditional PR

In the good old days, PR was all about press releases, media relations, and maybe some publicity stunts if you felt spicy. It was a one-way street—brands talked, and the public listened. Or at least, that was the idea. Your game plan was often restricted to newspapers, magazines, TV, and radio. Traditional PR is still needed as credibility still stands with news stations and respected digital newspapers. Press releases and press conferences are still highly effective in crisis management.

Modern PR

Enter the age of the internet and social media, and voila, PR has had a facelift. It’s not just about press releases anymore; it’s about creating a story that resonates across multiple channels. We’re talking multi-channel marketing—where your PR has to be consistent, whether someone’s looking at your Instagram story or reading an article about you in a major news outlet. Today’s PR offers services like content marketing, social media management, affiliate marketing, and even SEO to build and maintain your brand image. And with data analytics in play, everything is measurable. No more guessing if that feature in the local paper actually did anything.

Rise of the Influencer Model

Now, let’s not forget the newest kids on the PR block: influencers. They’ve added a whole new layer to public relations. An influencer shouting out your brand could be worth more than a half-page ad in a magazine, especially if they have a following that aligns with your target market.

Which one is right?

It’s more about the business or brand type that determines what type of PR strategy.

Different industries have different needs, audiences, and challenges best addressed through tailored PR approaches. The two can complement each other beautifully, creating a PR strategy that’s both broad-reaching and targeted. Consider a luxury brand and a local restaurant to get the gist. While the luxury brand might shine at high-profile events, the local eatery could score big with coverage at community gatherings.

How Trustworthy Is Your Brand?

Terms like ‘stunt,’ 'publicity,’ or ‘image’ might pop into your head when you hear ‘public relations.’ But let’s talk about an element in PR that defies the ‘modern vs. traditional’ divide—trust. Sure, you may have nailed sending the perfect message to the ideal audience, but the real question is: Do they trust what you and your brand are saying?

Top 3 Factors of Trust-Building in Public Relations

Consistency & Transparency: PR keeps a brand’s message the same no matter where you hear it, which makes you trust it more. Hear something good about a brand enough times, and you start believing it. And when stuff hits the fan? Clear communication and owning mistakes help keep that trust strong.

Earned Media: The Golden Goose of PR! So, earned media is like getting shoutouts from people or places that aren’t on your payroll—news stories, social media mentions, or good reviews. The cool part? People trust this stuff more because it’s not coming straight from the brand’s megaphone.

Expert Positioning: PR strategies often involve positioning company leaders as experts in their field. It could be through articles where they drop some wisdom, interviews where they spill the tea, or even gigs where they get to speak. When the boss looks like a genius, you’ll likely trust what the whole brand’s about.

Why is Public Relations Important?

Why’s PR a Big Deal Anyway? You might be scratching your head, wondering if PR is something you should even bother with, especially if you’re just starting out. I get it; it’s not as easy to measure as paying for an ad. But don’t count it out. Do you think your business is too small or doesn’t have much to say? That’s where you’re wrong, my friend. PR matters for everyone, big or small. It’s actually a game-changer for newbies on the block.

For new brands, breaking into the market can feel like crashing a party where you don’t know anyone. You’re a stranger. So why would anyone trust you, let alone pay attention to you? That’s where PR comes in as a total game-changer.

Top 5 Reasons Why You Need Public Relations Today

  1. Know and Use Your Why – One common misstep? Ignoring your core message. In the rush to launch, it’s easy to forget what you’re about. But that’s your anchor; it’s what makes your business, well, your business! PR helps you stick to your core message, making you stand out in the noise.

  2. The Right Placement – First, PR gets people talking about you in the places that matter. Whether in the news or on social media, PR makes sure your name comes up—and in a good way.

  3. Sweet, Sweet Credibility – When trusted voices are chatting you up, people are likelier to give you a shot. It’s like getting a nod from the cool kid; suddenly, you’re not a stranger anymore.

  4. Social Responsibility and Community Engagement – Nowadays, it’s not just about what you sell but what you stand for. Consumers want to align with brands that share their values and contribute positively to the world.

  5. Competitive Edge: Effective PR can help your brand stand out in crowded marketplaces. Whether establishing your executives as thought leaders in the industry or spotlighting your brand’s unique story and expertise.

Why PR is on the Rise

So we live in this crazy, fast world where tech makes it super easy to start a business or launch a new product. It’s a blessing and a curse, you know? Sure, you can get going quicker than ever, but so can everyone else. And if you think the market is noisy, you’re right. New brands and businesses are going to continue launching left and right.

Enter the PR pros with connections to the media, the influencers, and anyone else who can put your name on the map. They know how to wrap your message in a way that’s gonna turn heads. So you won’t just be another launch-to-fail brand or business – you’ll be a brand people want to listen to.

There’s No Such Thing As Bad Publicity

No Such Thing as Bad Publicity? Time to Reconsider. A solid PR strategy is crucial, but let’s not forget those viral moments that can attract a brand into the spotlight. You’ve probably heard the phrase, “There’s no such thing as bad publicity,” but let’s be real—times have changed. In today’s age of cancel culture, any attention your brand gets isn’t automatically a win.

Take the 2019 Peloton holiday ad, for example. The ad went viral in minutes! It had everyone talking—but not necessarily in a good way. The company’s stock took a hit, leaving us all wondering whether the buzz was worth it. So here’s the takeaway: Not all publicity is good, and what might grab headlines today could hurt your brand tomorrow.

This saying may not be as true as it was 4 years ago, but on either side of the video is Public Relations.

Contact Ritch Rep Services and check in on your reputation today!

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