Public relations (PR) are a field concerned with maintaining a public image for businesses, non-profit organizations or high-profile people, such as celebrities and politicians.
Others define it as the practice of managing communication between an organization and its publics. Public relations provides an organization or individual exposure to their audiences using topics of public interest and news items that provide a third-party endorsement and do not direct payment. Common activities include speaking at conferences, working with the media, crisis communications, social media engagement, and employee communication.
Public relations are used to build rapport with employees, customers, investors, voters, or the general public. Almost any organization that has a stake in how it is portrayed in the public arena employs some level of public relations. There are a number of public relations disciplines falling under the banner of corporate communications, such as analyst relations, media relations, investor relations, internal communications and labor relations. Most of them include the aspect of peer review to get liability.
Other public relations disciplines include:
- Financial public relations – providing information mainly to business reporters
- Consumer/lifestyle public relations – gaining publicity for a particular product or service, rather than using advertising
- Crisis public relations – responding to negative accusations or information
- Industry relations – providing information to trade bodies
- Government relations – engaging government departments to influence policymaking