PR can be a hard concept to get your head around. That’s because you can’t really see it. You can’t really measure it. Evidence of PR efforts can be shown via the tactics executed; but while measuring is attempted; ultimately PR is intangible. You can’t put a dollar figure on changing someone’s opinion. You can’t comodify emotion. You can’t track word-of-mouth that stretches a lifetime and can strike at any moment. This is PR in real life. And you’re probably already executing some wonderful PR-led goodness.
PR is about connecting people through emotion, through stories that engage, enlighten, inform and entertain in ways that will be positively remembered. How those stories are brought to life and syndicated to the world can manifest in many different ways. Therein lies the confusion. The confusion is in the ‘how do you do it (PR)?’ But the ‘what’ is simple.
PR is not the behemoth that people think it is. Perhaps consider that it is actually quite simple. Not easy. But the concept is simple. It’s connecting people. That’s it. It’s about bringing people together who can bring value to each other’s life.
At this point I think it’s important to demystify the difference between PR and marketing. No, PR is definitely not marketing. PR is a tool that marketers use. PR is about connecting like-minded people; that’s it.
Also PR is not publicity. Often PR professionals are introduced as publicists. And while there are some publicists out there (they specialise in generating publicity alone), PR as a job or industry rather, is the coordinated and strategic effort to build the relationships inside and outside a business or for an individual. Publicity is one tool that we draw on to do this. But PR is not publicity alone.
PR is about finding the unique stories that surround a person, place or thing to build communities. It’s about romancing potential friends so that they can enjoy wonderful like-minded conversation, ideas and inspiration together. Meaningful PR will communicate thoughtfully to build relationships that grow over time and that result in bringing people and brands together so that they can prosper.
PR is about connecting businesses (and the products and services within them) with the people that would benefit from them most. PR is a form of reputation management; in the way that if advertising is what you say about yourself (paid controlled message), then PR is what everyone else says about you (share your truth and let the audience decide). Sometimes we do it through third party endorsement (media/influencers etc.). Often it has nothing to do with that. It is always about content and communication. And mostly the rewards are slow and near impossible to measure. But the value of matching your business with a potential fan because the unique stories were found and told and shared well; is infinite.
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.