Part Two: Debunking Misconceptions About PR

Back by popular demand after our first blog, we’ve developed another list of five common misconceptions about PR that we constantly hear.

1.PR results happen instantaneously

This is an extremely common misconception, and unfortunately it is not true. This is one of the major differences between PR and advertising. PR is a snowball effect, especially if a brand is not yet well known in the industry. Particularly in the beginning, it takes consistent pitching, strong stories and persistence to grab a reporter’s attention and garner earned media coverage. The more the snowball gains traction as it rolls down hill, so do PR results as the momentum builds. 

2. PR results are guaranteed

Similarly, many clients believe they have a compelling story and that the moment we pitch it, they will get the results – guaranteed because it is so good. While yes, a good story is crucial to our success, ultimately we are not in control. It is up to the discretion of the reporter or editor on if they want to cover the story or not. It is our job to make the case for why they cannot pass it up!

3. PR pros are just event planners

Oh if we had a nickel for every time we’ve heard this one! Event planning is something we absolutely do, and we actually do it a lot for our clients, from grand openings, galas and conferences to other community events. However, events are one piece of the puzzle. We also conduct media and influencer relations, community relations, crisis communications, messaging, spokesperson training and so much more. 

4. PR is ‘spin’

Channeling our inner Olivia Pope over here! Many people think PR practitioners are “spin doctors” who can spin any negative into a positive. The truth is, we do want to create a positive story for our clients, one that will build their reputation and credibility within their industry. However, that doesn’t mean we sugarcoat everything and ignore the negative. Particularly in crisis situations, we counsel our clients on how and when to address negative situations, as well as work to build or rebuild a damaged reputation. 

5. PR is only needed during a crisis

PR is essential during a crisis situation – that is true! Many companies want to bury their heads in a crisis and say or do nothing, or they want to say and do too much. Therefore, seeking counsel from a PR agency is crucial in these moments. However, PR is needed all of the time as building a strong reputation and awareness for a brand requires consistency (remember that snowball!).


Are there any you believe we missed for a part three of our series? Tell us and we’ll debunk them next!