Some people think of content marketing as the trendy cousin of public relations (PR). In fact, the amalgamation of PR and Content Marketing strategy is getting quite popular in the world of marketing. Eventually, Bangladeshi marketers are also applying combined PR and Content Marketing strategies to market their business. Yet, there is no way to deny the difference between Content marketing and PR. Let’s have a look at the differences to have a clear idea.
So how does content marketing compare to PR?
1) Direct versus indirect customer approach
Both content marketing and public relations are all about distributing valuable information. With content marketing, you’re trying to build a direct relationship with your audience. You build trust by providing the quality information your clients need.
Public relations is more about forging an indirect relationship with your audience. You approach the right journalists in the most effective way, so they’ll want to write a story about your organization, its views, services or employees.
2) Usage difference
Content Marketing is put to use on a daily basis to activate your consumer but the PR agencies usually only come to use when there are special occasions that a brand needs to talk about. You reach 100,000 users- get to the press. Your brand has had a recall, get to the PR to take away the negative spin that needs to be rectified.
From a consumer perspective, remarkable Content marketing is seen as “useful”, “interesting” and “entertaining” content while a PR message is seen as a marketing message. Usually, PR releases are bland, formal and brand or product-centric as opposed to being consumer-centric. Content marketing messages or even adverts are seen as native ads by users since they’re seen to be providing consumer value.
4) Media: owned versus earned
This is a pretty easy one. With content marketing, you publish your content on your own media -a website, newsletter, YouTube channel, podcast, custom magazine or any combination of such channels. By offering your customers the information they really need or actively search for, you’re building a long-term relationship. You are a media owner – hence ‘owned media’.
Public relations ‘earns’ its coverage. Your organization gains credibility because established newspapers or large news sites are writing about it. It’s the free kudos of third-party endorsement. Basically, you want other people saying you’re doing a great job. That also means you can’t control the message that will eventually be distributed.
5) Broad versus niche message
With PR, you pitch your story – selling the mass media a good reason why they should write about your topic. You have to convince them of the value of your news – it has to serve more than your agenda alone. It has to have wider value and purpose.
As for content marketing, you’re directly focusing on your clients. You give them the useful (and often rather niche) information they’re seeking. In fact, it’s often very individualized copy, for just a small group of people who have a particular question, at each stage of their customer journey – from the awareness of a need to the after-sales service.
The content you produce should address the issues your clients are encountering. So your answers can be highly relevant for existing or potential customers, but uninteresting for a wider audience. In fact, you’re building a dedicated online or print magazine for your customers.
6) Timing of message
For content marketing, it matters less when exactly you publish your blog post or video. That’s because you’re building a long-term relationship with your reader (and the search engines and social media). You’re sharing tips and tricks, or useful information, that has a longer shelf life.
In PR, careful timing is crucial. Your press release has a far greater chance of being covered when it plays into the news of the day. And every minute counts when you’re working to meet the deadline of a journalist.
7) Measuring success
Tracking the success of a PR campaign is mostly done by measuring the number of earned media clippings and impressions. Content marketing, so much of which is digital, tends to be measured more in terms of clicks through to other web pages, how engaged people are with the content, and – ultimately – conversion metrics.
However, you already know that. Although they seem very similar, PR and content marketing are very different.
To decide which strategy your company should incorporate into your services, you should ask yourself the following question:
Am I trying to gain relationships with journalists and have mentioned in top publications? Or am I just trying to achieve backlinks and traffic on a website with that may not be a top publication?
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