Or should I say ‘why you need public relations AND content marketing?’  

You may have not realized it, but PR professionals have been content marketers for quite some time, we just did not call it ‘content marketing.’  My experience spans both agency and corporate, from working on AT&T, Ford and Coty Beauty, to now supporting technology and healthcare brands here at W2M. A significant portion of my own PR strategies have been dedicated to creating, promoting and growing company blogs and getting executives to tweet, share, post, like and comment on their stories…that inherently is content marketing.

I know that a lot of folks are going to disagree, stating that PR focuses mainly on “earned media” and content marketing focuses on “owned media”. I know because I am a recovering PR purist. But by making this distinction, the concept of both becomes incredibly confusing, hard to measure and ultimately shifts the conversation away from understanding the end goal of both disciplines: to drive traffic, impact awareness and ultimately move a prospective customer through the customer purchase funnel.  Each may feed the funnel at different stages, but both have funnel aspirations.

Many growth stage companies believe they lack the time and resources to meet the demands of both content marketing and PR. For them, it becomes an either/or choice – pour resources into establishing and nurturing a corporate blog (or active social media presence) OR cultivate relationships with media to “earn” media.  My advice? A dynamic mixture of both PR and content marketing.

Three reasons to implement both public relations AND content marketing

  1. Content marketing drives long-term thought leadership, page-rank advantage, and fosters trust between a buyer and a brand.
  2. PR plays an invaluable, complementary role; it reinforces everything you are trying to accomplish with content marketing.
  3. When both are executed correctly in tandem, the result is an implementation of storytelling across all distribution channels and audiences – a poetic blend of art and science.

You can see this blend of art and science for clients like Chainalytics, where our combined PR and content marketing efforts over the past year have garnered more than 46 earned media wins, 7 conference speaking opportunities and 2 awards on their behalf. Perhaps our proudest accomplishment with Chainalytics is that they were able to identify more than $1 million of new business leads directly from our social strategy which included company blog posts, as well as Twitter and Linkedin pushes.

Again, PR and content marketing have the same goals – increased brand awareness, educated audiences, increased thought leadership, better industry positioning, customer acquisition, and customer retention, etc. Incorporating both is a smart short- and long-term investment.

Twitter:@nataliesblack | @write2market LinkedIn: Natalie Black | Write2Market