Media: Combining Advertising and Public Relations

Although advertising and public relations both fall on the same side of clients’ balance sheets as staff functions, they have lived in separate offices for many years. Each of them produces media; however, they usually differ.

There are many differences between advertising and public relations that make them unique. A paid source of media is advertising. Advertising provides a guarantee that the client’s goods or services will be placed in the publics’ eye. Advertising’s complete creative control makes the messages targeted and purposeful. An earned source of media is public relations. The media and its viewers hold the lifespan of the organic content produced by public relations.

This difference has made advertising the desired form of marketing due to its controlled nature. But as consumers evolve, the world of marketing must as well.

Evolution of Media

Vehicles such as social media, music streaming and television streaming control the average consumer’s world today. These mediums push brands to market smarter. They use these mediums to stay current in their consumers lives. Because of this, the line between advertising and public relations becomes extremely blurred.

Consumers are becoming smarter and savvier. They not only know when a brand is advertising to them, but they also know how to avoid it. Between the second quarter of 2014 and the second quarter of 2015, the usage of ad blockers grew by 41%.

As brands adjust to the new complexities of reaching their consumers, advertising agencies and public relations firms are joining forces. It is no longer enough to leave the ads to the advertisers and the party plans to the public relations practitioners. Many agencies have been able to predict a need for fully integrated media plans. These plans include both practices, advertising and public relations. These agencies have been able to swim, while others have begun to sink.