A majority of public relations majors fall victim to the same evil question: “What is public relations?” According to the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), public relations (PR) is defined as “a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics.” Public relations is a communication entity comprised of marketing, journalism and communication. This raises the question, “What exactly do you do in PR? Why does it matter?”
PR is the behind-the-scenes thread that holds each piece of the fabric together. You can’t always see it, but it is always there. Social media is booming; empires are built upon the captions on Instagram, the hashtags on Twitter, or the content in a Facebook live video. Companies rely on PR practitioners to create content for the consumer to view. In turn, this will affect whether or not the product will succeed or fail. In a PR role, practitioners are expected to promote and maintain a positive image of their client. Think of an influencer with really strong social media content. Take an A-list celebrity like Kim Kardashian for example. This might sound silly, but hear this one out. Over the past year, KKW (Kim Kardashian West) Beauty has skyrocketed as a beauty empire because of social media. KKW has a team of PR specialists who monitor, create, and distribute her social media content to millions of followers. If you take a peek at Kim Kardashian's social media, there are constantly stories and posts involving her line all day, everyday. If the wrong image/caption is released, her brand’s image could take a slight hit, or could be destroyed completely. Without PR, social content would become a free-for-all. Content would have poor management and structure. Chaos would have no means of control or redemption in events of catastrophe. Social media can be compared to a dual ended sword, it all depends on how you use it.