The way to understand the difference between PR agencies and advertising agencies is to make the right distinction between the concepts of PR and advertising.
While PR serves the purpose of increasing the prestige, image and recognition of an institution or person, advertising aims to increase the sales of a good or service or to spread an idea. Therefore, these two concepts are separated from each other in terms of basic purposes.
Another important point that distinguishes the concepts of PR and advertising is the target audience. In PR, the target audience of the institution is the public, but in advertising, the target audience includes a limited audience in line with the area of the goods or services to be sold.
The third difference between PR and advertising is their working time. Since there is a long-term image work or communication of an institution in PR, the studies are continuous and uninterrupted because creating the perception always requires a long process. On the contrary, in advertising, the work is intermittent and periodic due to certain periods when products or services come to the fore.
One of the jobs that today's agencies spend the most time on is trying to gain new customers. PR agencies also need to constantly seek out new clients and explore new ways to grow their agencies. Below are the steps to be taken to achieve these goals:
Website: Creating a website that will make a good impression as your most important marketing tool is critical. If you want to get your website visitors excited about taking the next step and contacting you, a website that will highlight your agency, your team, your industry expertise, and clients you've worked with before and instill confidence in your visitors should be the first step in your marketing strategy. Don't overlook the importance of optimizing your site for SEO best practices to attract potential PR customers to your website. An optimized website increases your chances of attracting organic traffic and helps you build a stronger online network.
Content: Create content that will position your agency as an expert in your field and industry. When creating this content, remember that instead of writing generic content pieces, you should offer unique content and tailor it to your target PR clients when creating content that reveals your agency's expertise. By producing content in this way, you can benefit from content generation methods from company blogs, e-mail newsletters, LinkedIn posts, webinars, podcasts, YouTube, and other social media platforms to stand out as a thought leader in your industry.
Case Studies: Be sure to include case studies on your agency's website to showcase your past achievements and expertise. These studies will act as a kind of social proof and play an important role in attracting more PR clients to your agency. These case studies are very helpful for your clients to see what you can do.
Quality Presentation: You are one of the many PR agencies on the list for your potential clients who want to have a meeting with you and present to them. The only way to stand out is to craft a persuasive business presentation and PR proposal, customized to the client's needs. At this stage, you need to fully understand the client's business, past business, trouble spots, and competitors. Once you understand these, create an interesting presentation and try to attract all the attention of the customers during the presentation.
PR agencies help their clients in many ways and provide expert service. These are as listed below.
Reputation management: One of the main services offered by PR agencies, this tactic may include email newsletters, social media management, responding to comments and engaging with followers.
Crisis Management: Most of today's companies may encounter some corporate crises at certain times. Therefore, asking a PR agency to prepare a crisis communication plan has become very common in collaboration with PR agencies.
Media Relations: The media is undoubtedly the best way for companies to build their reputation and make their name heard. PR agencies are firms that specialize in properly managing the relationship between media and companies. Tactics that PR agencies employ include writing offers to journalists and influencers to get more coverage in industry news and media.
Social Media: Social media platforms are the most important place where companies can communicate with their target audiences and play a critical role in brand reputation management. Expert PR agencies also offer the best service to companies in the correct use of social media.
Speech Writing: PR agencies are the best place to get help when companies need to speak at press conferences and events. All speeches made on behalf of the company should represent your brand as a whole. If anyone from your company needs to give a speech, you may want to consider hiring a PR agency to take over the strategic messaging.
Press Releases: PR agencies also take an active role in press releases that companies need to write to announce their new products, launches, campaigns or movements. A hashtag to launch on social media about a new product etc. PR agencies can share with you the most useful ideas for the movement.
PR agencies with a wide range of services; strategically handle many communication processes such as reputation management, perception management, media relations, and crisis communication. The main purpose of PR agencies, which undertake the brand awareness and reputation management of the people and companies they work with, is to support these people in drawing a reliable image in the sector. It tries to prevent material and moral losses, thanks to the crisis communication plans that it carries out in advance or instantly against possible crises. It strengthens the foundations of the relationship with the target audience and the press, and increases brand awareness and brand loyalty, with many activities such as press release distribution, special news and interview studies, and TV program guests. PR agencies do all of these items in a professional and systematic way. PR agencies can also align PR and marketing goals, increasing your reputation as well as driving more sales.
In short, PR agencies help the people and companies they collaborate with to be more visible in the sector and make their voices heard by their target audience, thanks to their strong media relations.
The top five PR agencies in the world are as follows:
Edelman, the world's largest PR firm with more than 6,000 employees and a revenue of $984.9 million in 2021, is an American PR and marketing consulting firm founded in 1952 by Daniel Edelman. It is currently managed by Daniel Edelman's son, Richard Edelman.
Weber Shandwick is an American PR firm founded in 2001 by the merger of Weber Group, Shandwick International and BSMG. In 2021, it took the second place in the ranking of the world's largest PR agencies with a revenue of 860 million dollars.
BCW (Burson Cohn & Wolfe)
Burson Cohn & Wolfe, which put $772 million into its coffers last year, is a New York-based multinational PR and communications firm. In February 2018, parent WPP Group PLC announced that it had merged its subsidiaries, Cohn & Wolfe, with Burson-Marsteller. The combined agency is now known as Burson Cohn & Wolfe.
Fleishman Hillard St. Louis, Missouri is a PR and marketing agency. The company, which generated $680 million in revenue in 2021, was founded in 1946 by Alfred Fleishman and Robert E. Hillard. It is currently headquartered in Missouri, USA.
Ketchum; is a global public relations firm that provides marketing, branding and corporate communications services in the corporate, healthcare, food & beverage and technology industries. Ketchum, which is on the list of the five largest PR agencies in the world with its revenue of $ 550 million in 2021, was founded by George Ketchum in 1923 as a Pittsburgh-based advertising company. Its headquarters are now located in New York.
If you want to work in the field of public relations, here are the items that will help you start your career.
A college degree doesn't matter much to work in PR agencies, but most job postings will ask for a bachelor's degree. Most people who work in PR agencies develop a strong grasp of language, style, and both oral and written communication skills by earning a bachelor's degree in fields similar to journalism and communications.
As in most areas, one of the most critical roles in the PR industry is the connections you have. Because the nature of the job is to engage with audiences and manage their brand identity and reputation, PR firms look for people who are already on social media and are good at networking. Being active on social media and participating in industry-related pieces of training, events, and conferences, meeting people in the industry, and developing your network will be very logical steps for those who want to get a job in PR agencies.
When you're ready to apply for a job at PR agency, make sure your resume showcases your social and creative skills. Use your cover letter to showcase not only your achievements and experience but also your personality. When creating your resume, you can pretend you're writing a press release or blog post that aims to promote your brand in a positive way.
To help you choose the right PR agency for your business, you can follow these steps:
Before researching potential PR agencies that fit your needs, list your key goals and expectations that you want the agency to help you achieve. Detail specific goals such as the markets you want to reach, the key messages you want to convey, and the number of media engagements that need to be achieved. When you present these goals to the PR agency during your interviews, they will explain how they will help you.
List companies you have the potential to work with through a website where you can view the PR agencies available to you, such as the PR Agency Network.
Ask to speak with past and current customers when you meet with the companies you have listed and learn more about the services they offer. This allows you to understand their strengths and weaknesses and helps you learn firsthand how well they work with other clients.
After doing research and comparing the prices of different companies, decide which one is the best fit for your budget. If you find that an agency you like is way out of your price range, see if there's room in your budget to adjust their prices. In case there are some companies that you have a hard time choosing between, choose the one that fits your budget while continuing to provide quality service.
A good PR agency in the business will help you with PR and communication by working closely with your company to get the right message, content, and tone of voice.
PR firms not only use their expertise to generate a variety of new ideas but also build relationships with the media and specific journalists. They tailor the best content for each platform and broadcast t on your behalf.
A specialist PR agency will help you focus your energy where it is most effective and contributes to your overall business and marketing goals.
PR agencies know how to get the most bang for your buck within your budget, how to leverage timing, and how to structure and target campaigns. They know what works and what doesn't, because they have tried-and-tested formulas that have proven successful, and are open to telling you if an idea is worth pursuing.
Collaborating with a PR agency means that your company is safe in case of crisis. Since PR agencies have prepared a crisis plan in advance, they will be with you to prepare all kinds of explanations and present them to the media in the event of a crisis.
Social Media Manager: Responsibilities of social media managers; promoting the brand, interacting with audiences across various social media channels, as well as coordinating and developing unique brand voices for each channel. Their day-to-day duties may include creating a social media content calendar aligned with the overall PR strategy, engaging with audiences across all channels through brand-voiced comments and posts, and monitoring various data points to track the success of specific campaigns and strategies.
Publicist: This is the position that works with the client and works with the client to develop a unique PR strategy. They then use this strategy to find specific campaigns, events, and outreach that will most effectively execute this strategy. The most challenging part of their job is undoubtedly managing crises. When there is negative press about a client, the PR professional has to quickly find the best way for the client's brand to recover.
Copywriter: Copywriters in PR agencies execute promotional strategies by writing press releases, speeches, blog posts, social media posts, and other materials. They must be versatile enough to write in a variety of brand voices and adapt that voice to suit a variety of campaigns or PR content.
PR Specialist: PR specialists are an essential part of PR agencies, whose main responsibility is to maintain good relationships with journalists and other media contacts who can help them produce press releases, appear on TV, broadcast speeches, and other promotional media strategies.
Spokesperson: Spokespersons, whose responsibility it is to act as the face of the brand by representing the company in public, in speeches, and on TV, often work in-house for the company. They must also have the strength to respond to criticism and bear the brunt of negative press when crises occur.
The amount companies have to pay to cooperate with PR agencies will vary from agency to agency, depending on the services requested and the size of the agencies. To say an average price, we can say that it is around 1,000-15,000 dollars per month.
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