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Public relations marketing theory recognises media as a very powerful tool that businesses and companies must use to pave the way for success.
Media has the power to influence readers and the decision they make about certain things.
To achieve this, companies need the services of a good public relations company. Many companies are increasingly becoming aware of the importance of this service.
Public relations is an effective tool for any company to send the message to the public and raise its profile.
What is public relations?
There are many definitions of public relations but we will limit it to mean "reputation and image management". Many experts in the public relations industry agree that public relations has more to do with the reputation and image of the business.
They also define public relations as a practice that seeks to maintain a good reputation to earn an understanding and support, and also influence opinion and behaviour of the public.
Image and reputation are very important for any company's success and therefore need to be managed. Businesses need to manage the way the public perceives them or their businesses.
They need to monitor what they do, what they say and what is being said about them. The way the companies communicate is the way they get perceived.
Why do companies hire public relations agencies?
Companies need public relations for different reasons. They communicate their objectives to the agency and it will know what to do. Public relations agencies actually become the liaison between the organisation and the public.
Public relations consultants have experience on how to deal with the public and to change perceptions. They know what to communicate, how to do it, to which audience and for what purpose, and they know how to accomplish that.
Good public relations agencies usually have a good relationship with the media. Steve Sawyer, events and public relations executive at IPR, says a good PR and press relationship can turn a bad situation into a better one.
Also, to avoid being misunderstood, many businesses rely on public relations agencies for this function.
While marketing and advertising are crucial in terms of driving sales, public relations is also equally important in building the brand and ensure that the public understands your business.
Many businesses or companies need the services of public relations agencies because they either don't have time or lack the expertise. They, therefore, give it to someone who will give it the special attention it deserves.
Planning public relations events entails many things, namely research, event design, choosing a site, arranging food, décor and entertainment, sending invitations, organising transport, accommodation, coordinating the activities of the events personnel. With their core services facing them, many companies can't handle the task.
While other businesses have survived without employing public relations, it is imperative for start-ups to use it to boost their images as they don't have any reputation in their chosen industry yet. This is a good market for a public relations company.
What is the market for your public relations business?
There are two markets for event management and public relations services - the corporate and social market. The corporate market includes companies/businesses and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and charities.
The social market includes events like weddings and private family parties and we covered this in our catering and wedding articles in the recent past.