Content | June 16, 2021
PR; Is It More Than Just Press Releases?
Good PR, bad PR. We hear these phrases quite a lot. What this actually means in practice, however, can often get lost in translation. The general consensus is that public relations professionals push out stories in the form of press releases to journalists, hoping to get press coverage in return. While this is a big part of the job, there is much more nuance involved.
Here we shed some light on the world of public relations and why it’s much more than just chasing the front page.
What PR Means to Us
We believe the core of all PR work is the strategic communication of a company or organisations’ values or products. Helping a brand communicate these effectively can be done in all manner of ways, but the scope of what can be done under the umbrella of PR is amazing.
The Benefits of Good PR
Good PR is both proactive and reactive. It is measurable, strategic, and helps grow a brand’s awareness and credibility. This can be obtained through various platforms and isn’t just confined to press coverage.
A great example of proactive PR is this research conducted by the Liberty Content Team on how the retail price of supermarket’s own-brand hand sanitiser had increased as a result of the pandemic. This resulted in coverage from The BBC (which is gold dust in the PR world!) and indicates what level of exposure can be achieved if you can tap into what’s being talked about in an innovative and unique way.
The Essentials of Good PR Practice
Cherry pick your press lists. Sending mass emails out to every journalist you have an address for is a quick way to get yourself blocked. Spend time making sure what you’re sending out is going to be of interest to the journalist you’re sending it to. This can improve media relations and will pay off 10-fold in the long run.
Things to Avoid in PR Practice
Avoid trying to jump on every bit of news, especially if it’s not entirely relevant to the brand or it’s just a fleeting trend. You’ll likely waste a lot of time getting things pushed out before the next fleeting trend comes along, by which case, nobody will care about your ‘old’ news.
Why PR is More than Just Press Releases
Reactive PR, like it sounds, is a public relations approach of reacting to events and news that are relevant to the business. Crisis management is a typical reactive PR example where a company will respond to negative or unfavourable news in order to minimise potential damage to their reputation.
Proactive PR on the other hand can involve more attention and strategy as you’re anticipating the future. Planning campaigns in line with upcoming events is a great example, for example, a national awareness day or Mother’s Day.
Sharing press releases with journalists is only a small part of the role, lots of planning, prep, and often data collection comes first. Public relations professionals will also consider the method of PR best suited to the content; i.e. Traditional or Digital, if you’re unsure of the difference, we have a nifty blog here to teach you. And then there’s the comms side of things. Once a press release has been shared with a number of journalists, the story is closely monitored and often chased, meaning the role of a PR professional doesn’t stop at the ‘send’ button either.
Let’s Get You in the Limelight
It’s fair to say that PR, its practices and potential outcomes are extremely varied. When practiced carefully and correctly, it can be an extremely effective tool for any organisation to boost their notoriety.