The benefits of PR

Caroline Joynson

Caroline Joynson

Public relations is a crucial tool in building and managing the reputation of your business or brand. Leeds-based Freelance PR Consultant, Caroline Joynson explains the benefits of PR.

Public can be any or all of your stakeholders be they customers, employees, the local community or investors. Relations is all about the relationships you build with your publics - how you interact with them, how you communicate with them about what your business is all about and the good work it is doing.

PR campaigns can be made up of a variety of tactics such as media relations, hosting or speaking at events or conferences, sponsorship and many more; and for best effect, should be aligned to your business or brand’s key objectives and built into your overall strategy.

Arguably, the best known discipline of PR is media relations – promoting key messages about your business through gaining editorial coverage in the media (national, regional, consumer and trade print; broadcast and online). Editorial coverage is created independently by journalists based on the merit of a story, as opposed to advertising which you pay for.

Sharing the best and most interesting aspects of your business through public relations offers a whole host of business benefits, here are my top seven:

1. Increased awareness of your business which can help to achieve your business objectives, be they increased sales, attracting new employees or clients, attracting investment and funding, winning awards as well as building and managing your reputation.

2. Crucial third-party endorsement from journalists – they are independent, impartial and unbiased and can publish or broadcast whatever they want, so are trusted and respected. This makes a positive mention for your business or brand in the media extremely valuable; whereas with advertising you buy the space so can write whatever you want.

3. Building trust in, and the reputation of, your business through media relations and that crucial third-party endorsement from journalists is invaluable both in terms of achieving your objectives and protecting your reputation in more difficult times.

4. Media sources often provide space and time to tell your story and include details of your business and/or its products (where editorially relevant) so it is possible to reach your target audience with much more detailed messages about your business or brand than with some other forms of promotion.

5. PR is cost-effective when compared to advertising – with PR you can send out your news/press release to however many journalists and media the story is relevant to - with advertising you pay per advert, which can quickly add up.

6. There is no limit to how far and wide a story can go - a story mentioning a business may be picked up by a large number and variety of media outlets if it is relevant to each one, so a single story could appear in multiple titles, sectors and locations – so a news story about a big contract win for your business could be of interest to the business section of the Yorkshire Post, and other regional business titles, as well as the trade titles in your sector.

7. Online coverage and a link to your website from a trusted media outlet can help with Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).

Caroline is an experienced PR professional, having spent 14 years working in PR, both in-house and agency-side; and now freelance working for a variety of clients. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it