What is PR?
It is hard to explain the real depths that sit behind the title ‘Public Relations’ (PR); is often believed to be just Press Releases but they are just one of the tools used to create good PR. So many times I hear it described as ‘awareness raising’, but that too is just part of the story.
Public Relations is about creating and maintaining goodwill and mutual understanding between you and your clients/customers (publics). PR is used either to generate good publicity or to counter bad publicity. It is about ensuring that your target audiences are favourable and receptive to your organisation; it is all about changing attitudes from:
- Negative to Positive
- Hostility to Sympathy
- Prejudice to Acceptance
- Apathy to Interest
- Ignorance to Knowledge
A good PR person will use a variety of tools to achieve the above.
Purely on the media front, I have had over 30 years of working with the various media, successfully securing coverage in most of the quality newspapers, numerous television programmes including Panorama and Newsnight (and we weren’t the organisation being investigated!) and advised other nationally recognised documentaries.
Organisations I have worked for, and with, have been interviewed on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Women’s Hour and 5 Alive, as well as many regional and local stations. Locally, I have good contacts with most of the region’s press, TV and radio, and because I know what makes a good story and don’t waste the journalist’s time, I am usually successful in gaining coverage.
BUT as I said at the beginning, PR is not just about the media – it is much more and is a really important part of the marketing mix which leads to business success.