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What’s the Difference Between PR and Marketing?

By June 11, 2024No Comments

At Fort Lauderdale and Aspen-based public relations agency Durée & Company, public relations and marketing are seamlessly integrated, but that doesn’t mean they’re the same thing. Durée & Company handles both effortlessly, ensuring that PR and marketing plans are cohesive and strategic—a full-service approach not every agency can offer.

At its most basic definition, public relations is about creating and maintaining a positive public image for a brand, company, or individual. That’s done through sharing stories and updates with the media in the hopes the brand will be covered, so the message becomes widespread to a consumer audience. This is referred to as “earned media.”

Marketing is delivering value to a business’s audience with the hopes of building relationships and eventually converting the individual into a customer down the line.

Going hand in hand with a strategic customized public relations plan is an equally strategic and customized marketing and advertising plan. When designed to work together, public relations, marketing and advertising create a synergy of buzz-worthy activity.

Here are some of the differences and similarities between public relations and marketing.

Public relations focuses on earned media

Thinking about traditional public relations tends to cultivate images of press releases, crisis management services, and publicists pitching media-specific angles about a brand. Those are important elements that a brand needs to have and consistently share to help the company stay relevant and top of mind for journalists, media, influencers, and bloggers.

Public relations also serves as a third-party endorsement of a brand, good, or service. This means that when a respected media outlet or influencer shares a story about a brand, it carries more credibility and trust than advertising alone.

A public relations professional might pitch a journalist about a brand’s new product launch. The marketing angle of that messaging could be that the marketing manager shares that same news via email to the consumers who subscribed to their newsletter. Or the social media managers could post about it on social media.

Both are “selling” in different ways

The publicist is “selling” a story to a journalist through a pitch—perhaps even an exclusive interview—about a brand, company launch, fresh angle, or a founder. The goal is often to have the story feature the client in a positive light, which can attract more attention and help it stand out amongst competitors.

However, it’s not always about purely positive stories. Sometimes, publicists strive to position their clients as authoritative sources in broader narratives, even if the overarching story might not be positive. For instance, during the Champlain Towers tragedy, publicists would aim to have their clients featured as expert sources, providing valuable insights and thought leadership during such critical times.

A marketing professional is likely selling the product through storytelling. They could write a blog on a topic that a user would search for that might offer the product as a solution. There might be a lead generation magnet that includes a free guide when a consumer shares their email address. Down the line, the marketer will try to “sell” something to the consumer. It’s a softer sell than advertising and more about building the relationship.

Social media often falls under marketing

The term social media marketing says it all, right? It’s not always so cut-and-dry though. Paid social advertisements might fall under advertising. A social media campaign that’s designed to grow an audience is part of marketing.

It’s best to think about the goals of a social media initiative when considering how to approach it and who should run the operations. Some public relations agencies, like Durée & Company, offer social media marketing services as an option to add on. In any business, it’s wise to have the PR arm of a brand work closely with the social media team, if not run it.

Many newer journalists use social media to build relationships with brands, and publicists and to look for breaking stories. Customers often share their thoughts about a business publicly on social media. Having a designated public relations professional ready to respond can make or break a brand’s growth.

PR and influencer relationships

Influencer marketing is here for the foreseeable future. In the State of Influencer Marketing 2024 Benchmark Report conducted by Influencer Marketing Hub, almost 25 percent of their respondents said that they intend to spend more than 40 percent of their entire marketing budget on influencer campaigns. The influencer marketing industry grew to have an estimated market size of $16.4 billion in 2022 and is expected to catapult to $24 billion by the end of 2024. That means businesses need to create an influencer relations strategy to remain competitive. This is when hiring a public relations agency that understands how PR and social media work together is crucial. Durée & Company uses its public relations mastery and deep understanding of influencer relationships to facilitate the best relationships for a business or brand.

Ready to hire a full-service, award-winning public relations company? Thanks to new and expanding social media platforms, Durée & Company has many more opportunities to disseminate information and tell our clients’ stories. Contact us today to find out how we can help with a brand’s publicity, events, social strategy, influencer management and relations, content development, and more.


About Durée & Company, Inc.

Founded in 1999, Durée & Company is a full-service, well-respected and highly creative public relations and marketing agency serving a diverse client base of local, national and international consumer brands, landmark industries, business leaders and philanthropists from its offices in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Aspen, Colorado. Practice areas include nonprofit, hospitality, business, lifestyle, health and wellness, legal, real estate, yacht and marine as well as cannabis, psychedelics, and other emerging industries. Durée & Company is a member of some of the nation’s most elite professional organizations including PR Boutiques International™ (PRBI), The Cannabis Marketing Association and is a corporate partner of Cannabis LAB. To learn more, call 954-723-9350; go to; or Join the social conversation and follow Durée & Company on FacebookInstagramXYouTube and LinkedIn at @DureeCoPR.



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