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Public Relations and Media Relations: know the difference & relevance

Public Relations vs Media RelationsProfessionals working in the PR industry are often asked – What is PR and does it bear any resemblance to Media Relations? Although, these terms are frequently used interchangeably, they don’t mean the same thing. In contrast to popular belief, Public Relations and Media Relations are completely different in their approach and functionality.

Since it’s easy to get confused between the concepts of Public Relations and Media Relations, it is crucial to understand the difference in order to grasp their true meaning.

Public Relations vs Media Relations

PR is all about connecting the dots and indulging in strategic communication to bolster the relationship between an organisation and its audiences. An efficient Public Relations strategy helps an enterprise to understand its client requirement and offers solutions accordingly. In simple words, PR is about how your organisation is perceived.

Media Relations focus on the interaction that takes place with journalists, editors and bloggers with the aim to share a company’s newsworthy story. Professionals in this domain design the media plans that an organisation will try to accomplish in the near future. A few years back, robust media relations campaigns were the most effective tools to generate positive publicity about a brand.

How Technology has Changed Everything

Over the past decade, PR has transformed and attained a larger-than-life image due to technology. But there are many who feel that PR is only restricted to Media Relations that come with a sprinkling of social media and branded content.

PR is a constantly evolving space. Big budget campaigns alone can’t ensure success, and brands need to focus on building an online presence to attain maximum visibility and instant recall.

With the evolution of the Internet, the lines between Public Relations and Media Relations have blurred. Experts argue that Media Relations is an essential part of PR and its relevance definitely can’t be ignored. Hence, an effective communications strategy should be a combination of Media Relations and PR. 

Businesses are no longer relying ‘only’ on media placements to ensure PR success. Today, PR entails much more thought, versatility and scope of growth.

How should Brands Bag More Value from PR

We have listed out a few simple ways that will help enterprises to use PR as an agent for business growth.

  • ‘Redefining’ News

No enterprise should ever commit the mistake of limiting the scope of press releases to just executive changes and product unveilings. Press releases should be used for the promotion of branded content like blog posts, infographics, white papers, etc as well.

  • Widening the scope of PR

Apart from press releases, use other mediums such as social media, email to carry out promotional activities for engaging the prospective clients.

  • Using Google Analytics

When you want to track the visits from PR materials, Google Analytics will give you the desired results. Measuring the effectiveness of your PR efforts will help ensure future success. More organisations should readily embrace these new age methods.

Does this mean that traditional media has lost its sheen? The answer is no. However, when a business has a strong web presence, chances of receiving media attention only get higher.

So, are you readily accepting the new PR model? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.

  1. According to me, Media Relations is an aspect of public relations. The terms are not interchangeable as media relations focuses solely on the relationship between the company and the media. They use different media outlets and coverage to tell the company’s story, rather than directly engaging with the publics and key stakeholders.

    I won’t say that we are eager to accept all the varied nuances of the new PR model, but there are certain aspects which are definitely helpful for every business enterprise.

  2. The key to success in a top-notch communications strategy is the combination of strong public relations with strong media relations. Earned media is just a piece of the puzzle that makes up a successful PR strategy. if you are able to find where your customers’ interest lie, what they’re reading, then you are a winner in the making.

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