A Public Relations Glossary

It’s always a good idea to know what you’re talking about. With so many terms floating around, the intricacies and definition of PR can be confusing. Use this list to navigate your way around ‘PR speak’ so that you’re in the know. This way, you’ll be fluent in no time.

A

Advertising

How a target audience is persuaded to buy a product or service. This can be done in various ways, including television, radio, billboards, etc. Advertising is a component of marketing, providing specifics to a potential buyer with the aim of getting people to take immediate action, such as making a purchase.

Affiliate marketing

This is a type of marketing strategy. Here, the first business rewards another (second) business for each visit received to the first business’ website after a banner placement or ad on the second business’ website brings a third party (business or consumer) to the first website.

Audience analysis

Involves identifying and understanding a target audience. Such attributes for doing this could be preferences, demographics, and behaviors. The purpose is to make the information for this audience appropriate and relevant to their needs and wants.

Authenticity

This is being true to the brand and what it stands for. It means avoiding pretenses or falsehoods. This authenticity should be reflected in communications with customers, stakeholders, and the general public, as well as across websites and social media pages.

Audience reach

The total number of people who can see or listen to your content.

Automated PR

Refers to the software and other tech tools used to execute and manage previously manual public relations tasks. Automated PR can include media monitoring, distributing press releases, social media analytics, and other forms of analytic tracking. Automated PR allows for the monitoring and success of PR and other marketing strategies.

Automotive PR

PR practices for those firms involved in the automotive sector. Including manufacturers, dealers, and suppliers. Read about the intricacies of Automotive PR.

B

B2B PR

Public relations that helps businesses sell their products or services to other businesses instead of the general public.

B2C PR

Public relations that helps businesses sell their products or services to consumers instead of other businesses.

Biotech PR

PR for companies and organizations involved in biological and environmental fields or products.

Blockchain PR

Blockchain public relations is the management of communications for organizations or initiatives within blockchain. Blockchain is a decentralized digital ledger that records transactions.

Branding

The process of creating a unique image and identity for a product, individual, or organization in the mind of a consumer, often through consistent thematic messaging built over time. Branding is essential for the success of any business. See here for branding tips.

Boilerplate

A boilerplate is a standardized short paragraph placed at the end of a press release detailing basic information about the organization and what it does. Many companies put their company slogan here, too. The boilerplate makes people unfamiliar with your company aware of what you do.

Brand awareness

Refers to the level of awareness people have of a brand. Increased brand awareness is often a firm's goal since it increases the likelihood of purchase if your brand carries familiarity and a positive brand impression.

Brand loyalty

This is a consumer’s positive feeling towards a brand and their loyalty over time toward it when purchasing the kind of service or product it provides. This is despite the offerings of rival firms.

Brand image

This describes perceptions of a brand and how consumers feel about their experience of it. Various factors contribute to this: the product itself, the quality of a brand’s products, the customer service provided, and the way it is marketed. Brand image can go a long way to building a strong brand identity.

Brand journalism

The technique of writing about a brand in a style reminiscent of journalistic practices. The idea behind this is to avoid naturally sales-like or marketing-sounding text, making promotion more natural and providing a story or backdrop to a product or service that consumers or customers can relate to.

Brand mentions

Direct online references to a brand, company, or product, typically in reviews, blogs, articles, news stories, or social media. Brand mentions are important for shaping public perception, so monitoring these and taking steps to rectify any negative brand mentions is highly recommended. Click here for the best tools to monitor brand mentions.

Brand recall

Refers to the ability of someone to recognize and recall a particular brand’s name in the context of a product or service or another association with it. Recall can be aided or not. High brand recall can be positive or negative.

Brand storytelling

Where a brand uses narratives to garner an emotional, value-based connection between itself and its customers or clients. The advantages of brand storytelling are creating authenticity for an offering and a connection between the brand and the audience. Here is how brand storytelling can help you connect with your audiences.

Brand values

Brand values refer to the beliefs and actions an organization’s leadership has decided on that will distinguish the organisation from others. Brand values can relate to its operations, business practices, the local community or the environment. Brand values should be easily identifiable to consumers.

C

Circulation

Circulation in PR refers to the number of copies of a publication that are physically distributed. The higher the circulation, the higher the readership and audience reach.

Cleantech PR

Public relations that helps companies operating in tech fields that reduce negative environmental impact. See how we can help your CleanTech company.

Content marketing

When content is published online that educates, engages, attracts and retains an audience. It can be in the form of written articles, blogs, podcasts, videos and other forms of media. Content marketing benefits SERPs, credibility, brand exposure, and authenticity.

Copywriting

When text is created for advertising or promoting a product, service, or entity.

Coverage

The total number of articles mentioning you and the physical space taken up and gravitas given to it when doing so.

Credibility

Credibility in PR is the level of authority and trust assigned to a company from the view of customers and the wider public.

Crisis

An event, sudden or otherwise, that has the potential to cause harm to an individual or organization. It could be due to a company’s actions or lack of action, intentional or unintentional.

Crisis communication

The communication strategies and tactics used to effectively manage public perception and maintain trust during a crisis or negative event. Learn about the importance of crisis communication here.

Crisis management

Managing potential threats and damage mitigation procedures to an entity or person. Every business needs a crisis management plan, as you’ll learn here.

Crypto PR

A specialized area of PR for organizations in the cryptocurrency or blockchain sphere. Key uses for PR are educating people and engaging with crypto communities.

CSR

Stands for corporate social responsibility. It denotes certain business practices that contribute to positive societal outcomes, such as fairness, equality, charity, and the environment. An example could be charitable donations or having equal numbers of male and female board members. Corporate social responsibility has a great number of benefits.

CTA

Stands for call-to-action. This is a prompt designed to encourage immediate action, such as making a purchase, signing up, or requesting to learn more about something. A CTA can be explicit or implicit.

Customer acquisition

The process of attaining new customers or clients for a business.

Customer base

A customer base is those groups of customers or clients to which an organization primarily markets and sells goods. The base provides repeat custom. A customer base can be expanded.

Cybersecurity PR

A branch of relationships that concerns the communication strategies of organizations in the cybersecurity and blockchain space. This type of PR can focus on educating people about threats and security prevention matters.

D

Data-driven strategy

A strategy decided based on the collection and analysis of data in a systematic way.

Digital PR

The promotional tactics marketers and PR professionals implement to increase a brand’s or individual’s presence online. Nowadays, this has become fully integrated into modern PR. May also be referred to as online PR.

Domain authority

The score assigned based on search engine ranking (SERPs) that predicts where a website will appear on search results pages. The position signifies its relevance to a specific topic or industry. The domain authority (DA) was created by the website Moz.

E

Earned media

When a brand, company, product or service is mentioned without paying for it (this is then paid media if so). A third party writing about you or a customer giving a great online review are examples of earned media. Earned media is what all brands should aim for.

Editorial calendar

A visual and descriptive plan for PR and communications practitioners that details when, what and how all content will be shared.

Education PR

This is the PR activities for educational bodies, non-profits, or other educational organizations. See some of the names we’ve helped within education.

​Email marketing

A form of marketing that makes those on an email list aware of your products and services or any current special offers. It could also be used to remind people of what is offered or make suggestions to the audience based on previous purchase history.

Embargoed press release

Embargoed press releases are news releases, announcements, or media alerts shared with the media before publication. The release of information is restricted to a specific time and date. Read more about embargoed press releases here.

End notation

The inclusion of the symbols ###, placed at the end of a press release and before a boilerplate, signifies the end of the press release. An outlet then knows they possess the entire press release, and nothing is missing.

Engagement

The level of involvement or interaction an audience has with a brand or specific brand element, such as a particular product or campaign. It can be measured in numerous ways.

Entertainment PR

This type of public relations promotes and manages the public image of entertainers. Learn more about entertainment PR.

Event PR

Public relations that promote, manage, and leverage events for relationship-building purposes. The events can be on behalf of individuals or organizations.

Executive visibility

The presence and prominence of a firm’s executives, directors or leaders in the media, the industry, on socials, or at specific events.

F

Financial PR

PR that focuses on creating and maintaining a positive public image for organizations in banking, investment, and insurance. See how we do this.

Fintech PR

Public relations that helps financial tech companies enhance their image, raise brand awareness, and sell products. Check out how we can assist your fintech.

Framing

How information is presented that shapes the audience’s perception and interpretation of a brand, organization, or specific person.

Funding round

Raising capital from the market on behalf of a startup. Capital can be raised to fund expansion, general operations, or other business purposes.

Gravitas

The level of seriousness and importance given to a particular message.

Growth hacking

A marketing strategy used to help a business grow quickly and with limited finances. The aim is to acquire as many customers as possible. Different tactics can be used for this, such as giveaways or large discounts.

Guest blog

When someone outside the company or organization writes a blog or article for publication on your site. The piece will usually be in the same or a relevant industry to yours.

H

Healthcare PR

Public relations for organizations within the health sector. This could be pharmaceutical firms, medical device providers, or insurers. See how staying current in the healthcare landscape differentiates us from other agencies.

HighTech PR

High-Tech or High Technology PR refers to managing communication and public perception for companies and organizations within the high-tech industry. This sector includes software, electronics, AI, and telecom businesses. See how we can help your HighTech firm.

Holding statement

In public relations, a holding statement is a pre-prepared statement issued after a crisis or negative event. It acknowledges the situation and reassures audiences that the issue is being investigated further. Its purpose is to reassure people and allow the organization to fully investigate the incident before taking action.

Holistic marketing

This strategy integrates marketing beyond the marketing department, making it an enterprise-wide strategy across all (or multiple) business functions. The aim is to make the business an interdependent entity with a shared corporate strategy, strengthening the organization and its purpose.

Hook

A compelling line or brief product introduction used to draw the audience’s attention and make them want to read or learn more. This is employed in media press releases.

I

Integrated communication

A strategy combining different communication mediums and tools to deliver consistent messaging over various platforms. Integrated communication strengthens the brand’s overarching messaging.

Inbound PR

Inbound PR is a more modern approach to public relations that mixes traditional PR strategies with inbound marketing methods. The concept is based on creating valuable, engaging content that attracts and retains the interest of specific audiences as opposed to using outbound tactics, such as pitches and a press release. Find out why you should focus on inbound PR.

Industry publication

An industry-specific publication (Eg Fintech) that publishes articles of interest, advertising, industry updates, job posts, and stories related to that industry. These publications can be ideal for publishing content according to the nature and relevance of the publication's audience.

Influencer

A person with a large social media following who is considered knowledgeable or influential within an area and can help sell or promote specific products or services.

Influencer marketing

The practice of using mentions and recommendations of influencers to promote and sell a product or service, benefitting from their influence over an audience.

Infographics

Infographics (information graphics) present information visually, making the subject area easy to understand and shareable online due to its visual presentation.

Internet of Things PR

Internet of Things (IoT) PR is a branch of public relations concerned with managing and shaping the strategies of companies in the IoT sector. IoT is the network of interconnected internet-enabled systems and devices, including smart home appliances and other industrial sensors such as healthcare devices. Read more about the importance of PR for IoT.

Impressions

Any form of interaction with content. Visiting a website, seeing a billboard, or hearing a radio advert are all counted as impressions.

IT PR

Information technology public relations. A set of strategies and techniques relating to how information about a company in the IT sector is disseminated to an audience. Read more about these here.

J

Junkets

A day or two of media interviews with journalists conducted back-to-back in one location. Usually set up in a hotel, journalists will be scheduled for interview time slots in succession.

K

Keywords

These are words and phrases your intended audience uses when searching online. By using these words in your content, your target audience can more easily find you, increasing your chances of conversions.

KPIs

Key performance indicators. A way to measure how effectively a team or individual is reaching company objectives in their public relations efforts.

L

Landing page

The page someone comes to after typing in a specific search engine request or clicking on a specific link in an email or social media. It is a standalone web page, usually different from the main website page. An effective landing page serves the purpose of converting visitors into leads or customers.

Lead generation

The practice of generating a consumer or business’s interest in your offering to convert this interest into a sale. Common methods of lead generation within PR include SEO, pay-per-click advertising, webinars, industry reports, and content marketing.

Legal PR

Public relations for law firms refers to the practices and strategies used to manage the firm's brand, messaging, and goals with the media and the public to maintain credibility within the legal industry. Find out how legal PR can help you do this.

Localization

Adapting a product or content to a location or market specifically.

M

Manufacturing PR

Shaping the identity, perception and story of any firm involved in the manufacturing arena. Read how we can help your manufacturing company achieve its PR objectives.

Marketing

The promotion of a product, service, or ideas to increase sales and market share. Marketing involves promotional messaging to drive demand and result in purchases. Marketing also involves conducting market research before this and advertising the product and service as part of the marketing process. Read how marketing fits in with advertising and PR here.

Market responsiveness

The ability of an organization to respond to changes in demand for its product or service.

Media landscape

This refers to the overall environment and characteristics of different media forms. Different markets or territories have different media landscapes.

Media monitoring

The way to track online mentions of your organization, campaign, or an individual. The mentions assess public perceptions of these and the level and type of coverage you are receiving.

Mediums

A channel for communicating a message. The message can be written, verbal, or other. The medium can be physical or virtual.

MedTech PR

Public relations activities for firms who develop, manufacture or market medical products, including devices or other tech products involved in healthcare. It could be B2B or B2C focussed. Check out how more about MedTech PR.

Messaging

The underlying message you want to get across within communication and the tone and style used to convey this.

N

Narrative

This is the crafted story of an organization or individual used to impact public perception. It is developed to impress a certain message or convey values and aims in a compelling way. The purpose of a narrative is to build a relationship with an audience.

Native advertising

A form of paid media designed to be similar to the content of the source it is advertised on. As an example, you might see an advertisement for diet pills on a website that discusses the advantages of the keto diet over other diets. Advertising is heavily contextual. It can also match the style and design of the website.

Negative PR

Negative PR is created when an organization implements unprofessional or mistimed PR that produces a negative or harmful outcome. It can permanently affect a company. Understand how and why negative PR impacts a company here.

Newsjacking

A form of reactive PR. It is when a brand uses a news story or current topical issue to get seen by a wider audience, creatively inserting your brand into the ‘story’ to promote it. Newsjacking is not easy to get right. Find out how it can work for your business.

NFT PR

NFT PR, or Non-Fungible Token Public Relations, is an area of public relations focusing on entities within the NFT market. NFTs are digital assets representing ownership or proof. Key aspects of NFT PR include communication surrounding education and the uses and ethics of NFT. Read about the increasing use of PR within NFT.

O

Online presence

This can be defined as how easy it is to find a particular brand online and how visible it is if someone searches for it or a product or service it sells.

Outbound PR

This refers to the process of reaching out to the media to attain coverage. For example, sending a press release to an outlet hoping to get it published or written about in an article.

Owned media

Part of the PESO model, this refers to the channels owned and controlled by an organisation. This could include your social channels, website content, or brochures. Owned media is a powerful medium an organization has control over to share core messages.

P

Paid media

Any form of advert where the party advertising its product or service paid for the ad to be placed. This could be online, on social media, sponsored content, a paid backlink, on a search engine or TV. You are there because you paid. It is the opposite of earned media.

Pitching

The process by which you send a brief message to an outlet explaining why the subject or topic interests them or their audience and hoping it gets picked up so they write about it and it gets promoted. Here is a guide on media pitching.

Press kit

This is a set of promotional materials, including photos, bios, mission statements, and other visuals designed to be sent to media for information or promotional use.

PR audit

Public relations audits evaluate how customers, employees, investors, and the media perceive an organization. As part of this process, the messaging strategy of the company is examined to determine if it accurately conveys the desired image and direction that the company wishes to convey. An important process: read our step-by-step guide on carrying out a PR audit.

PR specialist

In PR, this is someone who creates, plans and executes campaigns for a brand through different channels and formats, such as social media, press releases and in-person events. Learn more about what PR specialists do.

PR stunt

An event planned by a public relations specialist or marketer to gain media attention for a brand or figure. Read more about how these could work for you.

PR tactics

The activities or actions an organization carries out to influence perceptions of its brand and to create customer relationships. Newsjacking is an example of a PR tactic. Find out how this and other PR tactics can be implemented in your 2024 PR strategy.

Press release

A staple of PR, still. A press release is an official statement sent to media outlets and used to make a public announcement to generate interest in an organization. Get tips on how to write the perfect press release here, along with some ready-made templates.

Proactive PR

Refers to active outreach, finding the right media outlets to get published in, sending pitches, press releases, and interview requests.

Public affairs

The communication of a public body or communication of an organization related to a public or government body to the public. Government and public organizations often use public relations to communicate a change process, help establish public confidence, and educate people, for example, on health-related matters.

Public relations

It is the process of managing and sharing information between a company or individual and the appropriate public or target audience in order to improve their perception. Read all about the definition of public relations here.

Q

Q and A session

A Q and A session in PR is a format used in presentations, interviews, seminars, workshops, or other public events where an individual or a group (panel) typically take questions from an audience. The purpose is to promote, educate, provide clarity on, or demonstrate a product or service.

Qualitative analysis

This is the assessment of non-numerical data, such as opinions and brand sentiment, designed to comprehend public opinion and media impact. This is an essential component of modern PR.

R

Reactive PR

The opposite of proactive PR. Here, instead of creating the news, you react to it instead. Newsjacking and crisis management are examples of reactive PR.

Real estate PR

In real estate, public relations is the field of public relations that helps manage and shape communication strategies in the real estate sector. This could include developers, property management firms, brokers and property investors. We’ve helped real estate firms triumph over their competition.

Retail PR

Retail PR aims to help those businesses, from small chains to large multinationals, that sell goods to consumers. Find out how we can help your retail business.

Reputation management

The practice of influencing public perceptions of an organization or individual through certain sharing of information or framing. Reputation management is at the core of PR.

ROI

Return on investment is an organization’s PR efforts quantified to measure its success. Share of voice or sales could help measure ROI, for example. ROI allows an organization to place value on its public relations efforts, and is another great reason to implement PR strategies.

Robotics PR

The management of the spread of information and maintenance of a positive public image for robotics firms. We’ve helped many robotics firms in their PR efforts.

S

SaaS PR

Public relations strategies for Software as a Service (SaaS) firms. A huge sector for us, see more about SaaS PR.

SEO

Stands for search engine optimization. It means optimizing websites and pages to be found in online search engines. The goal is to rank in a high listing spot on search engine results pages (SERPs).

Shared media

The content distributed by an organizaton itself over social media. It strongly links to owned media.

Share of voice (SOV)

This is a way to measure just how much of the market an organization ‘owns’ in comparison to competitors. The greater the voice share, the greater your position's strength.

SMART

Stands for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely. These relate to measuring the success of your PR efforts. Specific would be setting a specific goal, by a measurable amount, that is realistic and achievable, relevant to your goals, and in a certain timeframe (timely).

Sports PR

Public relations for sports teams and athletes. It's about establishing media relationships with sports journalists and getting publicity for athletes and organizations through various channels. Read how we can help you.

Stakeholder engagement

This is the process of engaging and involving those interested in an organisation's decisions, actions, or success. Stakeholder engagement is key for a successful PR campaign.

T

Telecom PR

Public relations for firms offering mobile and broadband services. See how we can help your telecom company.

Transportation PR

The deliverance of PR campaigns for transportation-related firms.

Thought leadership

Where an individual of an organization is presented as an expert in his/her field with their opinion or ‘take’ on a topic due to their proficiency and knowledge in a subject. Establishing a representative of an organization as an expert in a certain field helps the organization gain credibility and authority. Read how thought leadership helps you stand out from the competition here.

U

User-generated content

Here, consumers create and share content about a brand or product, mainly through social media platforms. User-generated content is a great way to promote your authenticity. It is both shared and earned media.

V

Viral marketing

A form of marketing that relies on content that people will share widely, thus increasing brand exposure. To be successful, it must be appealing to a large audience.

W

Web3 PR

Public relations for organizations in web3 that help them reach target audiences and promote products or services. Web3 PR is increasingly important. See why.

Web analytics

This is measuring and analyzing online data to optimize digital PR strategies, websites, and other online content.

Y

Yield management

In public relations, this refers to a firm adjusting prices due to expected demand as a result of a targeted PR campaign. For example, a campaign could elevate brand perception, allowing it to charge more for its product or service.

Z

Zeitgeist

This is the general moral and cultural climate of an era. An understanding of this can assist in the creation of timely and relevant public relations campaigns.

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