Ghastly is quite a word – it really communicates volumes. There are some pretty ghastly things in this world. To get the flavor of this horribly-bad PR mistake, let’s determine how we might describe the word ‘ghastly’ to someone who’d never heard the word before and did not have a good grasp of the English language… how ‘bout:
“Really, really, really bad breath – the kind that makes you want to hurl when you get too close to a person, but no matter how un-noticeably you try to ease back out of the person’s face the waft of hot, putrid air expelling from their mouth still seems to reach you, yet you have to smile and continue talking to them.” (HINT: that’s pretty bad.)
So listen up and don’t get caught with your pants down anymore. This PR mistake creates so much havoc that I see business owners waste tens of thousands of dollars that get NOOOO results because they don’t know this.
THE NUMBER 3 MOST COMMON GHASTLY PR MISTAKE IS (drum roll please):
“1 out of every 3 Businesses Think PR is Advertising”
That’s what I call a ‘factoid’ – “something which becomes accepted as fact, although it may not be true.” ~Oxford English Dictionary
History Lesson: Starbucks‘ PR
Starbucks, until more recently, did practically no advertising. It built its brand through good PR efforts. When Starbucks’ annual sales hit around $1.3 billion, their advertising expenditures over a 10-year period totaled less than $10 million.
If used correctly, PR can boost a company’s bottom line. The two concepts (PR & advertising or PR & marketing) go hand-in-hand, but by the same token they are very separate entities. Try selling yourself if you haven’t brushed your teeth and combed your hair first – whoa, that’s a hard sale to make…you might make it, but at what cost?
We’ve done enough marketing research to find that the majority of businesses today would like to have their companies well known and held in high regard. There is no better way to create that kind of reputation than with PR.
The Power of PR
PR is what separates the professional marketer from the amateur. It tells a story that your marketing or advertising message can never tell – from third-party credibility that makes you ‘worthy of belief.’
Public Relations makes people more interested and
more comfortable in doing business with you.
So the moral of the story is PR gets results when you use it properly. And you’ll no longer have to go around your elbow to get to your thumb. In other words – there’s no need to make this ghastly mistake. It only makes your breath smell horrid.
Here’s to knowing the difference,
Karla Jo Helms
CEO, JoTo PR