PR & Marketing – A Conscious Coupling

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What remains to distinguish PR from Marketing? Although they remain separate, the boundaries between PR and Marketing are becoming ever more blurred, particularly with the burgeoning power of social and digital media. To succeed in either, however, knowing how to tell a good story is a major factor.

Let’s break down the terms:

Public relations (PR) is the practice of controlling and managing the spread of information between an individual or an organization and their key audiences among the public.

Marketing is the action or business of promoting and selling products or services and generally includes market research and advertising.

Or even more simply, publicity makes sure people know about a product and marketing gets people to purchase that product.

Both functions are aiming towards one shared goal. Sell product. Their general positions, however, live at different ends of the marketing funnel. PR near the top and marketing, well in truth from top to bottom, but the bottom and onward is where their skills are most crucial.

The crossover occurs across the board. It is a publicist’s job to know and have relationships with bloggers, Instagram personalities, YouTube personalities and other social media influencers. These are influential people and you’ll want them to know and care about the product. In reality, however, most of the time to have influencers promote a product, the marketing department must come in and contact that person with a plan and offer. Then they’ll oversee the contract and execution of the plan on both sides.

But no matter where your position is in an example like the above, one truth stands in today’s marketing.

“People do not buy goods and services. They buy relations, stories and magic.” – Seth Godin

In essence, both PR and Marketing are storytelling functions used to connect with audiences, to take them on a journey and engage them emotionally. Both create results consistent with campaign goals which frequently include hitting or exceeding sales targets.

To that extent both are aimed at making a measurable mark on the all-important bottom line.

Here are three areas in which to focus an integrated PR & Marketing campaign to reach new audiences and strengthen the one you have:

  • Generate targeted traffic with pitches and press releases that focus on story. Story on company background, product’s problem solving, customer use, ecological focus, etc.
  • Network with the right supporters and influencers on social media. Influencers who have shared interests and values and thus will want to share your story.
  • Create clever, valuable content that support and tell your story. Content social media publishers will want to share.

Through the creation of story and narrative you’ll generate emotional bonds between brands and those with whom they most crucially wish to connect.




Rachel Louise Monk

Creative Director, POW


Words and insights from POW Publicity Creative Director, Rachel Louise Monk.

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