In every organization, public relations serves as a vital anchor that keeps its reputation and external relationships afloat.
It is a shield that minimizes risk and damage upon progress, initiating robust growth and evolution. Without it, detrimental crises and issues will occur inevitably.
Simply, public relations has become more and more crucial in a modern business world where the simplest written word online is capable of bringing an entire organization down.
So, what are the problems with public relations?
Well, is public relations actually getting the attention and respect it deserves? Despite being aware of its’ significance, many PR practitioners remain ignored and unacknowledged in their organizations.
What is Public Relations?
We have discussed the definition of public relations in more detail here.
In brief, public relations can be defined as a communication process that strategically establishes mutually beneficial bonds between organizations and their targetted audience.
The Problems With Public Relations
Lack of Understanding
One of the problems with public relations is that public relations are an advancing field is the most evolving countries worldwide. This has caused a stunted growth of the industry in the world.
There is a preconceived perception that public relations is just a mere topic in mass communication or marketing in professional institutions.
Realistically, public relations is a vast industry that requires in-depth expertise. Until these professionals rise up to the occasion, this might potentially threated the end of public relations practices.
Organizations that are particular on their budget cuts and distributions leads to poor financing management of the public relations department. Financial restraints are able to derail the progress and efforts of public relations.
Organizations are hesitant to spend a little more revenue they hold on improving their media image. Ironically, it should be the prime time for them to better their profile and attain a stronger custom
Clients tend to have high expectations towards the PR department to perform wondrous work in order to realize their preferred expectations.
They expect you to operate within any provided cost. Clients have impractical expectations of media relations, coverage and how extensive their budget will stretch.
Faced with these issues, a practitioner would need to make tight adjustments towards his/her campaign to achieve any results.
Too Many Communication Platforms
Communication platforms provide a convenient, effective way of transmitting messages across to the target audience; but the obstacles to pick the most suitable communication medium for clients could be troublesome.
Social media are convenient and free of charge hence has become popular internationally.
However, a lot of time needs to be invested to be put in to connect to the right audience, sending proper messages across to them and achieving desired goals.
Another one of the problems with public relations is that most organization’s leaders rarely have any acknowledgment for the department.
They tend to believe that anyone could do the work of public relations if given the task.
These leaders commonly have a narrow perspective of the profession so they feel as though that there is no need for engaging both In-house public relations and experts to manage their reputation.
Even if they eventually do, they would just employ them to run soirees or other irrelevant errands.
Finding the Right Talent
Public relations can be confusing. For example, the skill set of a PR manager is shared in different industries such as communications and ethics, and management and marketing. As such you may find practicing journalists, designers, business personnel, and psychologists in PR managerial roles.
The problem here is that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Having just part of the skill set will not help develop the right strategy to succeed in public relations.
To be a credible PR practitioner, you would have to go through the right courses and education to put yourself in the correct PR mindset, and not any other. With the right skills and education, it will be easier to avoid any PR disasters.
Importance of Public Relations
Public relations increases an organization’s credibility because it earns the coverage of numerous trusted sources. Additionally, these are intermediaries that communicate to a certain target audience which regards them as a filter of unnecessary content.
If the messages are chosen to be presented, they’ll attain high credibility due to the media’s credibility.
In any case of a disaster strike, public relations expertise would know what actions to be best taken.
They would be aware and prepared with emergency protocols and minimize any damage done to the organization’s reputation.
Press conferences, speeches, apology post, constructive campaigns, and etc would be handled by the public relations department, who understand press anatomy best, to push the team forward.
Interacting With Consumer
A PR department that is quick on response is sure to receive praise and trust from its customers.
Other than that, comments and opinions will also be provided to PR practitioners to understand what has been lacking in the company’s product and services.
PR practitioners are closest to their consumers, which means the organization’s identity is heavily dependent on them.
This covers several problems with public relations, as well as the importance of public relations.
What do you think? Are there other problems with public relations that we missed?
If you’re interested to know more, have a read of our article covering the differences between PR, Marketing, and Advertising.