PR (public relations) = A management function for using strategic communication to develop and sustain mutually beneficial relationships with stakeholders, influencers, and publics.

strategic communication — Using monitoring, information, and dialogue to raise awareness, compete for attention, establish trust, manage perceptions, and promote organizational objectives.

stakeholders — Individuals or organizations who, directly or indirectly, will benefit or lose depending on the organization’s ability to reach its organizational objectives.

influencers = Trusted and often unbiased individuals who actively or potentially could sway or reinforce their audience by endorsing the organization’s objectives.

public = Group of people with similar communicative behaviors and agendas in specific situations. One public often consists of many different demographics (age, gender, location, ethnicity etc.).

Public Relations FAQ

Is PR a form of marketing?
No. PR can function as marketing (when promoting products and services), but this isn’t true for all forms of PR. PR is a form of communication, as is marketing (all marketing are forms of communication, but all forms of communication are not marketing.)

Is PR about getting publicity for your business or organization?
To some extent, yes. Journalists are often important influencers with key publics amongst their readers, listeners, and viewers. But due to shifting media consumption behaviors, it’s increasingly more important to communicate with publics directly, which makes publicity less of a PR focus.

What is considered PR work?
Typical PR disciplines include:

  • Media Relations,
  • Internal Communications,
  • Public Affairs (PA)/Lobbying,
  • Inbound Communications,
  • Issues Management/Crisis Communications,
  • Reputation Management,
  • Business-to-Business PR,
  • Investor Relations (IR),
  • Community Management,
  • Corporate Communications, and
  • Marketing PR.

How do I stay on top of PR trends?
I’ve compiled a list with my favorite PR blogs.

Is spin a bad thing?

Starting Points

Here are three popular Doctor Spin articles to get you started:


2. A Recipe for PR Dynamite

3. My no. 1 Career Advice for Young PR Professionals

Public Relations Resources

This is list of useful PR resources:

Classic Press Release (download templates)

How to Write a Blogger Outreach Email (download templates)

Roadmap: PR for Startups (download presentation)