Good PR vs. Bad PR 

There is no such thing as bad publicity right? Oh, how wrong that statement can be. 

It is interesting to note that sometimes people do not quite understand the role of public relations in business, while others thrive. The main point of this article is to differentiate between good and bad PR and the things you can do to understand that you really need to brainstorm and think carefully about what you are putting out there. 

In this article we will look at:

  1. What is PR
  2. What is good PR 
  3. What is bad PR 

What is PR?

It is actually quite funny when you think about it, but according to Forbes.com, the public relations industry does not do the greatest job in public relations because very few people can actually explain what people working in the field does. The PR business is Persuasion Business. You are basically trying to convince your target audience to promote your product, support your position, and recognize your accomplishments. In a more PR jargon description, “Public relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics”.

PR is all about telling a story, creating narratives to adapt and advance their agenda. It is also used to protect, enhance, and build a brand’s reputations through the media, social media, and earned media. A good PR company should be able to analyze the company, find the positive and negative messages and translate those messages into positive stories and formulate the best response and deal with damage control if there are negative messages.

It is all about shaping an image, it mainly exists to generate positive publicity for businesses and create a good reputation. There are many different roles that fall under public relations; which can include handling consumer relations, writing and distributing press releases, creating and executing events for public outreach and media relations, conducting market research about the company, expansion of network, social media marketing, crisis public relations strategies, etc. 

What is Good PR?

A good PR campaign is one that has the definition of PR in mind. It must be well planned so that it has a positive lasting impact on your brand’s reputation and public image.  It is more than just a press release to raise brand awareness. If you implemented good PR, it can attract national media attention, boost sales drastically, and create a positive relationship between your business and audiences in the future. 

Let us break it down just a little:

  1. Good PR is informing and telling clients what they need to hear instead of what they want to hear. 
  2. Good PR is about recognizing that the best “PR strategy” needs to be followed up with good products/services otherwise it can be a wasted effort that harms the reputation of the company and PR firm. 
  3. Good PR is not just about the launch, it helps build and sustain brand support and hopefully changes consumer behavior through a steady stream of relevant communication to both media outlets and its target audience. 
  4. Good PR recognizes that there needs to be an organic relationship between client and business and celebrates that in an inclusive way. It welcomes input from clients even if it is negative. 
  5. Good PR is proactive and responsive in a crisis and always has a plan if something goes wrong
  6. Good PR is measurable in different ways depending on the clients 
  7. Good PR is about maintaining a pre-existing relationship with influential people and knows that relationships are built on trust and earned media that may have taken a while to develop.
  8. Good PR is about creating relationships with anyone and everyone. They don’t just target the big man on campus but also includes everyone that has shown success in the market. 

What is Bad PR?

Bad PR is pretty self-explanatory; it is basically doing the complete opposite of the definition of PR. It means that it is having a marketing strategy that doesn’t have a plan, procedure, strategy, or purpose. Some things that are very common issues that arise through bad PR: 

  1. Poor timing: Timing is very important when it comes to creating any media to promote a brand or business. A lot of the time, specialists and people doing the press releases do not pay attention to what exists in the market and when the best timing will be to publish.
  2. Poor choice of language: When it comes to writing press releases, try to keep the language simple enough because jargon and buzzwords do not impress media outlets and editors who have very little time to read what comes across their desk. You need to appeal to them and use language that they understand.

3, Poorly written press releases: The whole point of a press release is to grab the attention of your readers, get to the point you are trying to make quickly, and to follow up with information about the event or activity. Error, omissions, lengthy pitches, and poor structure can be some of the reasons why press releases are overlooked and thrown away.

  1. Poor follow-up: If you want to make sure that you get the full public relations experience and get heard, you need to make sure that you are prepared for any follow-up questions that may be asked if someone calls. Many businesses tend to lose potential clients because they are not prepared. 
  2. Too much hype: Avoid generalizations and exaggerations when appealing to the news media. You want to be positive, so supply them with supported facts and avoid superlatives because they can get tedious and can cause readers to get suspicious. 
  3. Press releases with purpose: It is important that businesses only send out press releases when there is something major to announce. Much like the boy you cried wolf, you don’t want to send out releases every time there is only a small development in your business. This is negative for businesses because if people get annoyed by the amount that you send out when something really important actually happens, they might just hit delete. 
  4. Not knowing what is going on: It is important that you research what is going on around you and in your target market before you send out your press release. Do your research before anything so that you know when the ideal time is to post.
  5. Lack of plan: Businesses cannot achieve successful PR without a plan. You need to figure out where, what, when, why, and how about everything that you wish to accomplish. It is also important to create more than one plan just in case the first one does not go how you intended.
  6. Not thinking outside the box: There are so many different ways to reach out and generate attention for your business. If you stick to just one way, you may never be able to reach your full potential. 

Bad PR can also come about when businesses take the “me first” approach. They need to understand that there needs to be a significant relationship between businesses and media outlets. It needs to be a give and take relationship rather than a selfish one.

Understanding Good PR vs. Bad PR is a basic fundamental when trying to build an effective PR strategy, however, sometimes it can be a lot of information at once. To better understand and get help from PR professionals to create an effective PR campaign, check out Press.farm for our pricing packages so that we take the stress out of something that should be celebrated  

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