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When it comes to public relations, there are plenty of misconceptions floating around. Many think it’s just sending out press releases or that it works the same as advertising – and of course, we can’t forget the famous ‘all publicity is good publicity’ phrase.

Here, we’ve busted these myths and a bunch of others too – read on to find out exactly why and how good PR will work wonders for your business.

1. PR and advertising achieve the same results

The most recent report by Nielson* reveals that earned and owned media are still more trusted than advertising. With 66% of people trusting opinions they read in editorial content, such as newspaper articles and 83% trusting recommendations from people they know, PR is vital if you want people to trust in your business.

While advertising may get you noticed, PR gives you credibility. How many times have you bought something online without reading at least one review? These days consumers are extra careful about what they spend their money on, so seeing a product backed by a third party such as a journalist, celebrity or blogger, makes them much more likely to invest. Good PR and media relations will help you to build relationships with – and get your products noticed by – influential commentators like this.

2. It’s just sending out a press release

While press releases are an important part of public relations, there are lots of other elements too. A PR campaign can include everything from a creative mailer (see an award-winning example of ours here) to social media and events. It all depends on the product. The important thing is understanding who your audience is and how to reach them, then putting in place a campaign that builds on that.

3. It’s expensive

Though some PR agencies charge higher fees than others, when you compare the cost of hiring an agency to that of advertising prices, you’ll see that it’s actually relatively cheap. A good agency will help you to identify your target audience, develop key messages and activity that resonates with them and will be open and transparent about the activity they are doing and how it links back to your business objectives.

4. All publicity is good publicity

This well-known phrase isn’t necessarily a true one. As the name suggests, public relations isn’t just about getting noticed, it’s about building and maintaining a positive relationship between a product or company and its target audience. So it’s vital to choose an agency that understands your brand and goals.

5. I could hire one person for the same cost as hiring an agency

Many larger businesses will hire their own team of PR professionals. But even then, the best in-house PR teams still work with agencies. Why? They know that with an agency you get a whole team of professionals who are well-versed in all aspects of the industry, have extensive lists of contacts and a wide range of skill sets. Any opportunity or challenge you have, the likelihood is they will have worked on something similar before. They’re also free to think outside of the box and it’s their job to challenge you with creative ideas – that’s why they know that a good agency is a valuable extension of your team. Check out our team’s expertise here.

Want to find out more about how we can add value to your team and help your business flourish? Contact us on 0191 265 7765 or drop us an email at team@karolmarketing.com – we look forward to hearing from you!

*Source: Nielsen (PDF)