Direct Advertising and Public Relations Campaigns can be highly effective marketing strategies for your small business. While advertising is a controlled message placed in paid-for space in print media, online platforms and social media, PR campaigns are media coverage through strategic outreach to journalists, news media and trade magazines. Bill Gates has been quote as saying that “If I was down to my last dollar I’d spend it on public relations.” The importance of PR therefore, is critical to many businesses both large and small – so let’s look at the main benefits of PR advertising.
- Raises Awareness and Goodwill – Newspaper articles, magazine blurbs and trade journals can raise awareness of your brand and products. PR builds relationships with journalists and consumers on behalf of your organization by sharing information. Further, PR creates loyalty through dialogue that take place via tactics such as social media and events.
- Inform – Chron Online states that “Many PR efforts have a direct goal of informing audiences. For instance, a consulting company may send out weekly email newsletters to offer free advice to businesses. The hope is that regularly staying in front of customers with messages that are useful will help you maintain top-of-mind awareness. Plus, providing free and useful information can generate positive sentiments from the market.
- Affordability – PR is an economical way to stay in front of consumers. While direct advertising cost=per-ad or per-click but PR is much more reasonable in that payment is based upon time spent making connections and submitting to newspapers, trade magazines and online platforms.
- Changes Attitudes – PR campaigns can have a purpose of improving or reshaping customer attitudes about your brand. Companies that struggle with negative perceptions in the market often use public relations to promote a message of community involvement, charitable giving or product benefits for the common good.