One of the most common questions PR pros encounter is some variation of “How do we connect our public relations efforts to business results?“.
This query is a disguise for a much simpler question: How does PR help me make money (or not get fired)?
Public relations is a tool for building awareness and trust. Those are our primary outcomes. When PR works well, people develop a favorable opinion about our company, our products and our services.
PR isn’t sales
Public relations is not a tool for selling things. We are not sales people. The problem that public relations solves is a lack of awareness and trust, not a dearth of conversions or revenue.
If conversions are the problem, you should invest in better sales training or enhanced marketing tactics. Do we help generate awareness of a product or service, which eventually leads to a sale? Yes. Do we help build confidence in a brand to nurture the selling process? Yes.
The analogy I often use is that we shepherd people to the front door of the shop. If the door is locked, we can’t fix that. If the sales person is on their break or out sick, we can’t fix that.
The impact of PR