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To get started, here’s a round up of 5 PR myths and realities:
1. MYTH: The PR pro lives the life of Samantha Jones from Sex in the City.
Although fashion and entertainment PR professionals enjoy the odd perk of a VIP party and access to a great outfit for the evening, the average PR pro’s day is not full of designer clothes and glamorous parties. The majority of our time is spent meeting with clients and sitting at the computer researching and writing communications strategies, sending emails to media and bloggers, with the ultimate goal of generating positive profile for clients.
2. REALITY:Public relations(hips)
PR is built on relationships. Securing your client’s valuable story in print, on TV or on a leading blog boils down to the relationships you’ve built. In addition to desk time, building and nurturing relationships through media networking is key.
3. MYTH: PR is schmoozing and spinning
PR teams work hard and think creatively to find relevant and timely ways to include our clients in news stories. This is vital. In no way do PR pros alter the facts and if they do, they risk their reputation and relationships. They work hard to find the nugget in a client’s story that will make it appealing to media, often based on what is happening in the news; what is new and interesting, and what is relevant to the market in which they are working. Keeping an eye on media and blogs is an important PR role and although schmoozing can help, finding the story and fitting into the news is our priority. Personally, I detest the word “spin”!
4. MYTH: PR is mostly press releases and press conferences:
Join a meeting with a new client, and the words press release and press conference often come up. PR has changed dramatically with an ever-evolving media marketplace and the press conference and press release are no longer as relevant. The mass blast of materials to all media outlets no longer resonate with short-staffed newsrooms. We’ve learned that the key is to personalize your pitch to each outlet and provide all of the information and images in a format that is easy to access. PR pros need to know the media and bloggers they are pitching to ensure the story idea makes sense for that writer or producer, and their platform.
5. REALITY: PR is a wise investment
Credibility comes from third party endorsement and the impressions and audience reach that you secure through PR is arguably more valuable and effective than paid advertising. Committing to a consistent PR plan and working closely with your PR consultants can help you to achieve valuable results for both your brand reputation, and the sales of your product and services.
We will continue to share the latest on PR myths and realities, and also expand on the ever-important role of social media in PR. Be sure to follow us on Twitter for updates!