PR vs marketing: it doesn’t have to be one or the other
As the digital age shows no signs of slowing, the overlap between industries is becoming even more apparent, with PR and marketing no exception to the rule. And for years the age old question has been, what is the difference?
The easy answer is that PR or public relations centres on raising a company’s profile in the media, which can be done through press releases, thought leadership, features, comments and social media where appropriate.
Whereas, marketing is more focused on content for customers, partners and investors as well as taking on the role of much needed sales support. This can be in the form of email campaigns, webinars, whitepapers, e-books and more.
However, the truth is, that in the grand scheme of things we are all content generators, just with a slightly different end goal.
So how can businesses get them working together in order to maximise ROI?
The first step is get your messaging aligned. The most effective marketing and PR campaigns compliment each other and run side by side. It is important to have your marketing team sit down with your PR agency and go through the marketing plan and messages for the next month, quarter or even year. This will ensure that you are in a much better position to maximise the benefits of both.
Once the messaging is agreed, it is time to create the content and share it across the various channels. However, don’t let the teams get precious about who owns what content as the best way to maximise ROI is to re-purpose, re-purpose and re-purpose again. There is no reason a thought leadership piece can’t be altered and then shared as a blog, or a PR case study turned into a more concise, benefit heavy marketing case study.
Another increasingly important channel for content distribution is social media. Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and the huge array of others are widely used channels by both consumers and businesses nowadays so don’t forget to include them in the plan.
However, we all know how difficult it can be to keep it populated and current, so if you share the load between marketing and PR you will not only create more content than before, but you will be left with a hub of knowledge for your followers to digest. The easiest way to make it work for everyone is to focus the marketing team on promotion, advice and sharing the company’s existing content; and the PR team on making you look current, knowledgeable and successful by sharing coverage, topical articles and industry news.
And the best thing about teaming up the PR and marketing efforts is that the knowledge and creativity can be shared between the two. Brainstorming ideas and thinking outside of the box all becomes much easier when you double the size of the group. Although for some these efforts can seem expensive, time consuming and difficult to control at first, this needn’t be the case. The businesses that effectively team up both their marketing and PR efforts will not only find that their communications channels become easier to manage, but they will also be the ones that stay ahead of the curve and grow successfully way into the future.
Still not sure how or why PR could work for you? Get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll have a chat!