When you are in business, both PR and advertising are important. You may as well not be in business if you don’t do one or the other because it can be difficult to compete and you may be left behind when the starting gun is fired. However, which is the better option? It would be great if you can afford to do both to get the full benefits of each strategy.
However, if you are going to pick one, it may be better to focus on public relations rather than advertising. Let’s take a closer look to see why PR is the better choice.
1. It’s A Better Investment
When you place an advertisement in the newspaper, radio, TV or in magazines, it can get pretty expensive. Some of these methods cost more, a lot more. You can also consider online advertising which will be cheaper and easier on your budget, but this also means you may not get as much exposure. In such places, people are not really looking for these ads, are they? On the other hand, your PR agency can help to generate news coverage thus making your return on investment much greater than that of advertising.
2. PR Is More Credible Than Advertising
Many of us know that advertising can be a little iffy! All kinds of claims can be made, there’s a lot of fine print and it almost seems like you can get away with saying anything, no matter how untrue it may be. In fact, you may be familiar with the term, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is”. A lot of this can be attributed to false advertising, especially on the Internet, which is full of scam artists.
False promises seem to be the order of the day, particularly on the Internet. Advertisements also generally try to sell us things. In general, we are more open to press releases or a public relations firm that tells us the same thing.
3. Public Relations Is More Personal
Advertising is pretty much just a one-way communication. It’s generally not something that brings about a conversation or leads to a relationship. By using platforms such as social media, you can create healthy relationships by responding to posts from customers. This not only makes customers feel important but it also gives customers a more personal feel towards your company. This is because it is very real, since real people are advocating your services or products.
In advertising, you could get some celebrity endorsing a product because they are paid to do so. They probably have never used the service or product themselves. Sometimes, people are just tired of this and switch right off. A public relations team is totally involved and get right behind the services and products that they are advocating.
The thing with advertising is that it only lasts for a short time. PR has a more lasting effect. For example, if an article, press release or blog is written about your product or service, it will virtually last forever online. Searches can still bring the page up 5 years later. It can also be shared and can attract a lot of people, including the right people who may just make all the difference.