Being a publicist—also known as a PR professional—means you must master various skills, from managing communication strategies to building corporations’ credibility. Publicists are social media coordinators, brand strategists, masters of internal communications, and wordsmiths with a knack for writing. These multi-skilled individuals are in demand by large companies, non-profits, celebrities, and even public figures, as their unique set of skills makes them useful for brand overhauls, crisis management, proactive storytelling, and more. Keep reading to learn more publicists facts so you know what to look for when it’s time to make a hire for your own team.

1. Publicists handle more than just advertising

Contrary to popular opinion, publicists are not the same as advertisers! Advertising is the practice of paying for a certain amount of impressions, clicks, or actions. Publicity, on the other hand, encompasses more than that. Publicists manage overarching communications strategies, which can include but are not limited to pay-to-play advertising campaigns. Successful PR strategies hinge on both paid and organic placements, meaning publicists spend significant time building relationships with media and nurturing stories that reflect their clients’ values and strongest initiatives. Paid advertising is a great way to drive website traffic and conversions, but to build long-term loyalty, organic coverage is also essential. 

2. Publicists can build solid relationships with media personnel

Photo Credit: fauxels | Pexels

Not every story will be a slam dunk on the first try. Occasionally, a publicist’s success will hinge on the strength of their relationships with reporters. Building relationships with overworked reporters is a challenging job. It takes a lot of time and effort, but the payoff is certainly worth it. Organic coverage in top-tier outlets builds unmatched credibility for brands.

3. Publicists can help your business grow in a cost-efficient manner

Publicists don’t require massive advertising budgets to make a difference for your brand. They add value by leveraging their relationships to promote your business on popular media channels, building and adjusting various strategies, and placing authentic coverage about your brand that more effectively spreads the word about your mission than a paid ad. Billboards and out-of-home ad placements cost a fortune, and tracking who’s actually being reached is hard. But a publicist can spend a fraction of that cost on highly targeted media pitching and see similar results.

4. Publicists can help businesses grow at every stage

Another interesting publicist fact is that PR services are designed for businesses at every single stage in their lifecycle, not just for start-ups. Goals might shift from awareness and driving traffic to brand loyalty and targeting specific consumer segments, but the overarching PR strategies can be applied in many ways to support brands both large and small, old and young. Every business needs the help of a publicist to maintain a steady beat of positive coverage and share new and evolving messages with audiences.

5. Publicists possess wide-ranging skills

To see continuous growth in the PR industry, publicists must not only remain proficient in baseline skills like media pitching and business writing, but they must also develop new skills as the times change. In the past several years, this has included learning many social media platforms, adapting to digital publications, learning how to manage virtual events, and getting acquainted with a 24-hour news cycle. All this knowledge means PR professionals can help fill in knowledge gaps at your company so you can focus on larger organizational goals.

6. Publicists manage your story from start to finish

publicists facts
Photo Credit: brotiN biswaS | Pexels

A publicists’ work is not finished after they submit your press release or pitch. They manage the process of sharing stories from start to finish. Their core skills help them outline key messages in the form of media alerts and leverage their network to get stories picked up, but they can apply these skills to other communications needs, like social listening, SEO strategy, email marketing, and beyond.

7. Publicists possess incredible persuasion abilities

There are so many products on the market these days! Publicists have a knack for convincing potential customers that their client’s products and services are the best in the business. They have honed their persuasion skills for years. They have an exceptional ability to narrow down key differentiators, turn messages into catchy elevator pitches, and find the best placements for each story. Publicists are adept at crafting messages that appeal to specific target audiences’ desires.

8. Publicists often work around the clock 

Not every newsworthy event or crisis happens during working hours. That means publicists must be ready for anything at all hours of the day. Hiring a publicist doubles as an investment in your customer service, as you’ll have round-the-clock support for your business. This is crucial in times of crisis, but also extremely helpful to gather feedback in slower times, too.

9. Publicists are always learning

publicists facts
Photo Credit: Pixabay | Pexels

This is a publicist fact that remains mostly unknown. But PR pros tend to get bored when working on one project for too long. Collaboration with all sorts of brands and learning the ins and outs of what makes their businesses and industries tick are both exciting and highly stimulating for publicists who love to expand their knowledge. You can leverage your publicist’s desire to learn more by inviting them to participate in various team meetings and initiatives. You never know—it might spark an idea for your next big story!

I’m ready to hire a publicist. What are the next steps?

The above publicists facts might have you convinced that now is the time to hire a PR pro for your business. But before embarking on the hiring process, clearly define your business’s goals and make sure multiple stakeholders weigh in. Your publicist must have a clear sense of the work you need to be done before building your strategy. If you’d like more info about how a publicist can help grow your business, you can schedule a discovery call and get answers to all your questions today.