Public relations is the art and science of managing communication between an organization and its public. The public relations practitioner seeks to share organization news with media and the public, build their understanding of their goals, shape perceptions of critical challenges they face, or affect their actions.
A range of PR agencies provides a range of services. Public relations involves a variety of strategic initiatives to manage reputation that might include: speech writing, media outreach, opinion research or commentary development; social media management; content marketing; event coordination or participation; crisis communications management after an organizational mishap; press release distribution services or editorial calendar creation among others.
Priorities set by leaders and the staff of an organization are communicated through various channels, including written and visual information, interviews, and media outreach. PR messages may include:
The goals of a public relations campaign may focus on improving image, image-building (retention), image-lengthening (feeding the news cycle), or image improvement (in crisis). The campaign goals usually evolve as a function of the organization’s communication strategy. Depending on the structure of an organization, other objectives might include integration with community events or activities, corporate identity upgrade, building alliances with selected stakeholders, validation of brand positioning/image, generating new business leads/opportunities, etc. One of the most common reasons for a company to engage the services of a public relations firm is to increase its sales.
Who are the stakeholders? Many people and organizations largely misunderstand public relations as “spokesperson work.” However, PR practitioners have an ongoing relationship with stakeholders, from executives to shareholders and customers, from community leaders to advocacy groups.
Many PR firms take an organizational approach when developing strategies. They tend to reach out initially so they can create a rapport before they begin working on community outreach efforts. They use catchy titles and exciting locales in their marketing materials so that their reputation precedes them (as one of only two or three established firms in town).
Ronn Torossian is a globally recognized entrepreneur, investor, and advisor in some of the world’s leading companies. In addition to being one of the top PR professionals in the world, Ronn is also a successful business entrepreneur with many significant companies under his belt.
As the saying goes, “hard work pays off,” so hiring a good public relations firm can be a good investment. If you are a business owner, you will have different strategies that you must implement, from building your brand image and increasing customer loyalty to finding new clients and expanding markets. With so many risks facing each business nowadays, investing in PR is one of the best ways to grow your business and reach success.