Marketing vs Public Relations

Marketing concentrates on customers, wholesalers and retailers while public relations concentrates on internal and external stakeholders including employees, stockholders, public interest groups, the government and society as a whole.

A company cannot always control public relations. Sometimes there are unplanned contact points with stakeholders and non-stakeholders that influence the perception of the brand in the news or during interactions between employees. A public relations department should use these situations to create a positive image and perception for the organization.

Companies can engage in cause-related marketing and socially-responsible production of its goods and services to positively reflect its public relations activities. Damage control consists of responding effectively to “negative events caused by a company error, consumer grievances, or unjustified or exaggerated negative press (Clow, 2014).” Proactive approaches include entitling where a company attaches itself to the positive outcome of an event like a fundraiser for cancer awareness. Enhancements are proactive measures which use small benefits to siggest much more beneficial outcomes overall such as low-fat ice cream.


Kenneth E. Clow; Donald Baack, Integrated Advertising, Promotion, and Marketing Communications, 6th ed., Pearson, 2014