The Differences Between Marketing, Public Relations and Advertising

Posted: April 21, 2011

Diane Kuehn Founder & Chairman


This is the first of a four part series. The next three address a repeated question business owners ask: Exactly what is the difference between marketing, PR and advertising?  Part 1 addresses marketing. Part 2 defines PR. And Part 3 highlights advertising.

The orginal series of these three blogs was written for Handshake 2.0, an enterprise of Handshake Media, Incorporated,  a Blacksburg, VA-based  technology firm specializing in digital media public relations. The blog series offers an example of an award-winning, successful blog that achieved the client’s desired goals and results. Handshake 2.0’s CEO Anne Giles Clelland, said, “The goal was to drive traffic to Handshake 2.0 website, which will increase social media followers, enhance interest, encourage engagement and ultimately lead to profitable advertising sales. The writing needs to also meet the criteria of showcasing cutting edge business knowledge, must be impeccably original, impeccably researched, impeccably factual and link to a minimum of 4 highly credible online sources.”

The blog series not only generated 263 unique views within the first 24 hours (5x the owner’s goal and 5 bonus payments to me as the writer),  but it engaged visitors, received numerous comments as part of a dialogue and kept visitors coming back because it was part of a series.  Comments included:  “Good stuff…very insightful! We often take these three terms for granted and use it interchangeably! But if we take a moment and think there is a nice difference between the two. Look forward to the third.”€

Earlier this month, the series won a first place award in the Virginia Press Women 2011 Communications Contest and will advance to the National Federation of Press Women competition this fall.

Stay tuned for next week’s post on marketing.