After reading chapter 13, I better understood the major differences between public relations and marketing. It was helpful because currently, I work as the marketing director at Toussaint Law Firm and sometimes I feel as though the things I do could be put into a public relations category. While public relations, advertising, and marketing all follow the same process of researching, planning, communication, and evaluation, they are focused on different things. The specific way that our book describes the differences in public relations is that it is focused on many publics instead of just on consumers. I found this series of photos on The Ads of the World that shows the difference between marketing, PR and advertising. While this series of photos comically describes differences, it is very precise in its quick descriptions.
While marketing consists of the four P’s (product, price, place, and promotion), public relations focuses on the promotion. Through IMC (integrated marketing communications) strategies, companies develop plans to market different products in different ways. IMC differs from mass marketing in that it focuses on individual consumers, practitioners use databases to target consumers, practitioners send out well-focused messages, use consumer-preferred media to send their marketing messages, and favor interactive media.
After reading this chapter, I’ve realized that I do a little bit of public relations as well as marketing work at TLF. Maybe I should change my title. 🙂