I remember the days when advertising people looked down at PR types. They had the mega budgets while the PR people toiled away on the leftovers writing press releases, arranging company events and the like.
Does Advertising Sell?
Advertising sells! Well, maybe not so much anymore as the preferred – and sometimes – only communications channel.
A story about a company in a prestigious newspaper like The New York Times has always been more valued more than an ad in the same paper – that reliable third-party endorsement.
The shrinking newspaper and magazine landscape is evidence that organizations are gravitating to other communications channels, particularly social media.
And what they are doing is not called advertising. They are reaching out to their customers through Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google+, webinars, and blogs. Increasingly, they want to interact with their customers at company-sponsored events, product samplings, and through community service.
Funny thing. It’s the PR people who are leading the way. They are writing the blogs, articles and opinion pieces. They are the ones creating community relations programs – like they always have – but now these communities are more often than not reached online. These are the company’s primary activities and not just an adjunct to advertising.
Here’s another thought: maybe the terms advertising, public relations, publicity, promotion and direct response should be consigned to the compactor. Those words just don’t seem to work in the new online communities that are forming like runaway amoebas.
The silos that separated advertising, public relations and marketing are eroding at a fast clip. Where before the ad and PR people fought over who got the bulk of the budget, clients are demanding a more collaborative approach to marketing their products and services.
They don’t care about titles. They want evidence that their advertising, PR, marketing, social media campaigns are rowing together, in sync, towards the same goal.
How about new titles like collaborators, community builders, prophets, enablers? Or maybe one word that summarizes everything we are: communicators.
Advertising? That’s so 20th century.