PR pros bring a unique set of skills and insights into the marketing mix, but that does not always translate into good marketing practice. A PR, however, with wider marketing experience can be worth their weight in gold.
Good PRs can very quickly understand the headline issues affecting a business, how the media is likely to respond, and then frame a response. That is what we do.
But that is rarely enough.
Truly talented PRs will help a business communicate effectively to all stakeholders - and that means a deep understanding of their clients' or employers' business, and of other marketing disciplines.
I have spent 25 years working in both marketing, BD, comms and PR primarily for professional services brands. Back then, most marketing activity was comms-led - the PRs natural home.
Today, most professional services marketing is BD led. That is no bad thing, but I find it astonishing at just how little BD people understand PR - and vice versa.
Marketing and PR all too often work alone, ignorant of each other's activity.
OK, that is a broad generalisation, but we would all benefit if we all know exactly what each other does and how that benefits a business.
More importantly, all disciplines need to truly understand their business, what drives buying behaviours, how that is changing, and how marketing, BD and PR should respond.
Achieve both and you will have a great PR.
PR can be a thankless and exhausting business. I’ve had countless conversations with PR executives ultimately want to get out of PR entirely and move into marketing. Having worked with PR professionals for 20 years, there are a few glaring educational deficits for many wanting to make the transition. It’s not just practical skills around marketing disciplines missing; it’s often a shift of perspective to “thinking like a marketer.”