When most people think of PR and potentially booking an agency to manage their PR; they immediately think of media coverage. Usually way more than what is usually remunerated for, that there is lead-time to secure or what is possible based on legitimate news and interest to the media.
Yes, a PR agency can secure media coverage for you. But it’s not guaranteed, nor is its placement type, size or frequency. And PR is SO MUCH more than just editorial in the media.
PR is made up of an assortment of tangible and intangible tactics that bring you closer to your ideal outcomes. And because of it’s hard to see or touch it can be hard to define and measure.
But having an active PR function running parallel to your business is like sprinkling unicorn dust on business growth and prosperity for the long game, the infinite game.
It’s foundation laying and future proofing, with evergreen value long past the paid tenure of your project fee or retainer. So today’s blog post is about rethinking PR. It’s an outline of what most people think PR value is, and in contrast what it actually is and usually looks like. (*depending on your strategy).
Most people think PR is:
- Media Coverage (and lots of it)
- Media Releases (and a heap of them)
- Features Stories (the successful entrepreneur/business kind)
- Invites to red carpet events or VIP parties
- Complimentary tickets to Fashion Week or Tennis
- Convincing Influencers to run coverage for free
- Events and parties managed on their behalf with VIP guests
PR is sometimes those things. Depending on the strategy, budget and ideal outcomes. But PR is actually and mostly these things too:
- PR helps position your brand
- PR builds your brand
- PR helps you to identify your worth
- PR helps to manage your online reputation
- PR helps you to unearth your value
- PR helps to shape and share your story
- PR generates connection with new communities
- PR enlightens and changes perception
- PR builds consumer awareness layer by layer
- PR is key message clarifying
- PR is network expanding
- PR ignites new and builds on existing customers
- PR helps you define your point-of-difference
- PR builds confidence in how you communicate
- PR is professional copywriting and blogging
- PR is social media management
- PR is website optimisation
- PR is point of sale experience
- PR optimises user experience
- PR is refining your customer journey
- PR generates word-of-mouth awareness
- PR helps to retain staff through professional internal comms strategies
- PR helps to build culture in and around your brand
- PR supports new business acquisition
- PR positions you as a more attractive prospect for staff and customers
- PR can support your sales strategy
- PR helps to avert issues and contain them when they happen
- PR facilitates introductions who will help your business grow
- PR gives your business access to the media/influencers
The list of intangible tactics and outcomes which positively impact a business over time are aplenty. I really could go on.
When you work in a service industry that every business needs, but rarely if ever is understood it can sometimes be a precarious client-agency romance.
It’s industry norm for clients to THINK THIS and agency to THINK THAT. The wrestle between agency and client is something I set out to change since the beginning of rara – providing the world with PR education, resources and ensuring a smooth client-agency experience for all. A great PR experience is mostly managing expectations and just being transparent about what PR is, how it works and what you’ll get in return.
This blog jumps in for the PR agencies and PR consultants of the world to outline for existing and potential PR clients what PR is in today’s world. What PR looks like and how PR adds value in ways you weren’t aware of or entirely underestimated.
Previous decades in PR were quite one-dimensional, in many cases it was centred in event management and media coverage tactics. But today, we are a PR generation. We are all roving content creators and PR coordinators.
PR is an industry that is integrated and forever evolving. Now, we can all execute on our own PR to some level. And whether you’re working with an agency or managing your own PR; it is important for all business owners to rethink what their definition of PR is, and what PR value looks like.
Words by Jade Roberts
raraPR Founder and Creative Director
raraPR is above all the sum of people who together help build brands and share stories. We are present in our determination to make a positive difference to the world by representing individuals and businesses that are doing good. We are an extension of the personal stories within us, those that we exist for and those within you that need to be heard.