How Does Public Relations Training Differ From Advertising?
Winger Marketing working with WGN TV at the Winnetka Community House
Many business owners find it difficult to decide where to place their hard earned marketing dollars, contemplating the differences between using their financial resources for traditional purchases of hardcopy and media advertising or putting it into the more proactive strategies of public relations. These two industries happen to share some common traits, yet both are vastly different from one another as well.
Adverting Expertise and Control
Standard advertising methods, such as buying an advertisement in your local newspaper or creating a television commercial, allows the business owner to have a great deal of creative control. You have the final say in the selection of the images, colors, text, and location or time of day in which the ad will be placed. As a result, you can end up spending enormous amounts of your advertising budget in order to achieve the perfect single timeslot or advertisement location.
Public relations teaches you how to save those excessive costs by going after the many types of free publicity that are available for any company or online enterprise. The creative use of press releases and news conferences is only one aspect of a successful public relations campaign. Nearly all forms of media are taken into account, including television, radio, and all the various forms of social media platforms available on the Internet, such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and especially LinkedIn. However, in these free forms of publicity, you relinquish a certain amount of creative control in the process. This is often a very small price to pay because your advertising dollars can easily go much farther.
The general public is growing increasingly savvy in regards to the many types of advertising that we see on television, radio, and especially social media. They are very aware that these types of video commercials or creatively designed promotional ads are actually being bought and paid for by the companies themselves. The consumer always takes this into account when evaluating the information contained within these types of publications. They can often become mistrustful of certain specifics contained within the ads.
Public relations helps to boost your corporate visibility and brand name recognition by using third-party resources which have much more credibility with your targeted demographic. Because the information and advertisements being viewed by the general public are coming from non-biased news sources, television outlets, and perhaps radio DJs, the validity of the information being transmitted is considered much more reliable to the average consumer over a company paid television commercial or newspaper ad. These third-party resources are often viewed as a type of “official endorsement” by reputable leaders in the community for your products and services, raising your corporate standing and reputation instantly among your customer base.
While these two forms of marketing can offer vastly different outcomes, public relations provides some other hidden benefits that advertising does not. Public relations expertise can help you to overcome difficult future circumstances that may well be outside of your control, resulting in your brand name taking a hit in the press. Because of the many diverse benefits of public relations, more and more corporations are choosing to shift their marketing dollars into PR campaigns as a way of broadening their options.