Small business owners typically recognize the value of an expansive marketing plan when they create their overall business plan. But more often than not, they usually forget to add public relations to the list, which is a huge mistake that we will discuss further below.
As a small business owner, it’s your job to do everything in your power to expand the consciousness of your ideal customer. By promoting your business utilizing the full capabilities of combining PR and marketing, not only will you create better brand awareness, you’ll put together a killer marketing strategy that will take your company from being virtually unheard of to being the talk of the town.
The Differences between Marketing and PR
Before we share successful PR and marketing strategies, we felt it necessary to highlight the differences between marketing and PR. This way you’ll gain a better understanding of the two and recognize why they are separate yet equal ways to promote your business. The major differences include:
- Public relations can be free if you are willing to work hard to create brand awareness for your business. Although a case can be made that marketing can be free as well. In the end, hiring a PR team and marketing consultants (or a company that does both) is your best option since your time would be best spent focused on growing your business and keeping your current crop of customers satisfied.
- Public relations does not cost as much as advertising. In many cases, this valuable service can help put a business on the map. And since PR is typically less expensive than marketing, it’s a great way to improve your business’s brand awareness and get your company name in the local consciousness.
- Public relations efforts are all about creating brand recognition. Marketing is about trying to sell products and services to your potential customers. On the other hand, a good PR team will work diligently to keep your name in the forefront of your customers’ minds.
As you can see, there are certainly a number of big differences between PR and marketing. Yet, both of these business branding methods, when combined, can create a powerful ecosystem that can help boost your company profits and sales into the stratosphere.
PR and Marketing Tips to Live By
- Growing your business with online marketing and search engine optimization – when initially attempting to promote products and services online, most companies typically experience the sound of silence. They wonder why – now that they have a website – customers aren’t coming out of the woodwork in droves to pay for their products and services. Without marketing and then effective content creation and dissemination strategy, your website is basically going to be a ghost town. Utilizing online marketing and search engine optimization is an amazing way to get your marketing message in front of your target audience. But it’s not going to happen naturally by accident. You have to work hard or hire an online marketing and search engine optimization team to perform these services on your behalf.
- Growing your business with PR and search marketing – more than likely, after performing online research, you’ve purchased products online based on the information that you’ve gathered. Public relations provide an excellent way to take advantage of this opportunity as well. PR news releases are easily discovered in the search engines. The same holds true with digital video news clips. It’s quite possible that your target audience will discover these informational PR pieces, look further into your business, and ultimately purchase your products and services.
Public relations and marketing clearly go hand-in-hand. Begin taking advantage of this wonderful phenomenon sooner rather than later to experience the incredible benefits.
Wendy is a super-connector with OutreachMama and Youth Noise NJ who helps businesses find their audience online through outreach, partnerships, and networking. She frequently writes about the latest advancements in digital marketing and focuses her efforts on developing customized blogger outreach plans depending on the industry and competition. You can contact her on Twitter.