Promoting a company is no easy thing as most segments of the market are saturated and the number of services to be performed for actual clients is limited. This is where businesses and individuals will resort to various means of becoming visible to clients. PR and marketing are two such options. But what does each of them do and what is the difference between them?
PR or “public relations” is the activity intended to help a company build a strategic relationship with its public. Although this is a relatively new practice, it has always been done in one form or another, but it has come to be more refined and more demanding as companies become bigger and stronger economic entities and market share and consumer preferences are fought over.
Even so, PR is not only for companies and people, but also for governments, institutions, initiatives, ideas, products. Anything that can stand for some good publicity and a little more visibility can benefit from a PR campaign which can consist of associating with a famous person, an important cause or anything else that can help improve reputations.
Marketing is the management process designed for getting a product or a service from the manufacturer or service provider to the public. This involves communication and promotional strategies, and distribution and pricing tactics. It is part of the business process, very calculated and accountable. As creative as it may be, marketing results must be well translated into figures in the end.
Marketing is divided according to the target audience: other businesses or consumers. Also, marketing specializes in research, communication and brand management. Each of these segments plays an important part in the proper promotion of a company. The bigger the company and the data base to be administered, the bigger the marketing department and the more numerous the needs of the company will be.
PR vs Marketing
So what is the difference between PR and marketing?
Although they both work to the benefit of a company, an institution, a person or a product, PR is more interested in image and making the public aware and interested, as well as sustaining a constant favorable opinion. Compared to PR, marketing is the broader and more practical approach and it comprises PR services in its communication and advertising strategies.
Marketing may have a formula which must be applied to everything, the one consisting in product, placement, price and promotion, but PR has a free hand to be as creative and versatile as it needs. In the end, it’s marketing that needs to sum up all efforts into sales, whereas if by PR you increase visibility, its job is done (at least in the purest sense of the theory). Both of them impact a company’s success rate, though marketing is closer to the final results than PR is.
|Is aimed at improving the visibility and the image of a company||Is aimed at increasing sales|
|Is all about the image||Is all about research, communication strategy, brand management|
|Its results are seen in increased public awareness||Its results are seen in good sales numbers|
|Can refer to a company, a product, a service, an institution, a person, an initiative||Can refer to a company, a product, a service, an institution, a person, an initiative|