Business people all around the world rely on public relations experts to wave their PR wand and grant them more customers and create visibility for their brand. This isn’t quite how it works, but PR experts do provide a myriad of services, helping clients meet these goals. Services differ across firms, but they involve reputation management, social media, public affairs, executive training, event planning, and marketing.
There are two sides to reputation management: crisis management and brand positioning. Crisis management helps companies overcome negatives. This usually involves advising how to handle the media. PR experts may also work with brands to rebuild broken trust in the communities it serves after the negative publicity passes.
Unlike crisis management, brand positioning is a more proactive approach to brand management. It entails finding a marketing strategy to ensure a client’s brand occupies a certain level in a customer’s mind relating to other brands when making purchasing decisions.
Social Media Management
Public relations specialists use social media platforms to humanize companies. Social media allows a more two-way street form of communication, instead of the one-way communication of print media and television ads.
Social media also involves content creation and marketing, which has become the epitome of PR. Content is distributed through blogs, as well as the social media platforms of the clients and PR firms and specialists who represent them. For instance, Kanye’s PR specialist, Tracy Nguyen, frequently posts positive content pertaining to her client and his wife, on her Instagram and Twitter accounts.
As brands grow and expand internationally, they usually need assistance navigating litigation and political situations of new environments. PR experts help craft strategies for entering different locations, and information on how to lobby for certain changes. Experts also help companies choose appropriate causes to support, and give back to the communities they serve.
Public relations experts train executives who manage brands to speak with the media, stakeholders, government officials, and employees. These coaching services cover the art of delivering presentations, and how to handle interviews and appearances on television. This training helps ensure the brand image is maintained when PR specialists cannot step in to replace executives.
While event planning agencies exist separately, many PR firms started in this field or expanded their services to include it. As event planners, PR specialists help secure venues, design the set-up, secure media coverage, and assist with product placement. For instance, the NFL no doubt had event planners ensuring Super Bowl 50 went according to plan.
Recently, public relations firms have begun to blur the lines between public relations and marketing. As a result, many PR firms now help companies to find brand ambassadors and create advertisements for print and electronic distribution. Ketchum now includes marketing services, clients can tailor for specific audiences; like men, Latinos, and millennials.
Public relations is a vast field covering many disciplines. Many different services are offered. Over the years, firms have added services based on the specific needs of clients they served. So specializations and services provided by many firms reflect their history of the firm and the caliber of the clients they serve.
5W Public Relations is a full service PR Agency headquartered in New York City.