Back in the day, public relations, advertising and marketing were firmly divided in their respective silos and disciplines. We in public relations were often referred to for real in jest as the “bastard step children” of marketing.
Often we’d sit in an integrated meeting of the disciplines and keep our traps shut until we tossed out a bit of value-added strategy into the mix while our peers across the aisle glared nicely.
Today, the blended nature of marketing has public relations professionals up in arms. Some are balking at the integration of PR so cohesively into marketing. In short, these people are having an identity crisis.
They don’t want to be a marketing smoothie. I get it; nor do I, BUT,the nature of marketing today is quite different than the isolated and unintegrated way we worked in the past (as recently as six years ago).
Marketing in its broadest and most inclusive sense now requires every single communications disciple to integrate and blend while learning others’ expertise. For people in public relations, that’s called hybrid PR. For people in marketing, that’s called integrated marketing – the blended whole.
If you don’t do either or both, you die. Purely and simply, you become antiquated.
Change is now; change is always the future. Change makes some people uncomfortable and others squiggle with glee (that’s me). The changes you make as a professional can be methodical or they can be all-in. Regardless of how you change ensure you’re changing to innovate and not merely to keep up with the Joneses.
What’s a Marketing Smoothie?
I know you’ve made a smoothie in your day with all the good, healthy and nutritious ingredients stacked up looking all colorful. Then, what happened? You clicked the “on” button and voila! A blended smoothie chock full of nutritious wholesomeness.
Marketing has become that – a blended beverage with the smarts and nutrition of a plethora of disciplines feeding into and around the other for the benefit of the user, customer, prospect, etc.
Public relations is a powerhouse in that smoothie; it’s the energizer and protein that packs punch. It brings integrated value few other disciplines can brag on. We in public relations do this for every marketing smoothie you’ll ever drink:
• Put the core business goals front and center into strategy
• Build communications strategy against the business with results-driven comprehensive and inclusive programs
• Message map the core outbound and external messages for the C-suite and spokespeople and train them to be on top of such messages
• Build and create content against the business goals (content marketing)
• Optimize that content for on-page performance (search marketing) and toss in a bunch of optimized online news releases every campaign benefits from
• Write the landing pages and title the calls to action to drive traffic to sites and generate leads (digital marketing)
• Write and optimize the online newsletter that ties into the digital strategy using the core messages from the message map (email marketing)
• Create and execute blogger relations, influencer campaigns, thought leadership, industry analyst relations, investor relations, and internal communications, to name several
And, yet, all that goodness listed above is not done alone. Some may believe it is and tell you so, but don’t be fooled. An expert public relations practitioner needs her sisters to fully develop and deliver a solidly trackable and measurable campaign with every single ingredient to create the best-tasting smoothie marketing has to offer.