The Best PR Quotes

Every PR blog must have a post with PR quotes, right?

Cover photo by Jerry Silfwer (Instagram)

Looking for the best PR quotes?

Well, I do run a public relations blog, after all. And if you run a PR blog, you must have a blog post with a selection of the best PR quotes.

Now, I know I’m cheating a bit here:

Not all of these quotes are strictly about public relations. Some of them are more business inspiration in general.


The Best PR quotes

I’ll be adding PR quotes to this post as I go along.

“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.”
— George Bernard Shaw

“Since we cannot change reality, let us change the eyes which see reality.”
— Nikos Kazantzakis

“Public relations are a key component of any operation in this day of instant communications and rightly inquisitive citizens.”
— Alvin Adams (1804-1877)

“There’s only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.”
— Oscar Wilde

“Public relations is not a bag of tricks. It is a long-term effort to earn public trust.”
— Edward L. Bernays

“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”
— Warren Buffet

“We don’t see things as they are, we see things as we are.”
— Anais Nin

“Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.”
— Rudyard Kipling

“If a young man tells his date how handsome, smart and successful he is—that’s advertising. If the young man tells his date she’s intelligent, looks lovely, and is a great conversationalist, he’s saying the right things to the right person and that’s marketing. If someone else tells the young woman how handsome, smart and successful her date is—that’s PR.”
— S. H. Simmons

“The media’s the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that’s power.”
— Malcolm X

“Public relations is the result of things well done.”
— H. A. Simon

“The function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers.”
— Ralph Nader

“Every once in a while I’ll sit down with a jug of Jack Daniels and a bottle of Advil and dig through old press releases to see if PR agencies have learned how to write.”
— Mark Ragan

“Frankly, I consider ‘PR quality’ an oxymoron.”
— Christa Degnan

“In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different.”
— Coco Chanel

“Public relations is not just a function of business, it is the very essence of business.”
— Anne Gregory

“It’s okay to have your eggs in one basket as long as you control what happens to that basket.”
— Elon Musk

“Strategy is about making choices, trade-offs; it’s about deliberately choosing to be different.”
— Michael Porter

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.”
— Oscar Wilde

“No agency or their clients will be impressed with how savvy you are to the marketplace if you can’t express those thoughts in an easily understood and acceptable way. Get the writing skills down first.”
— Ronn Torossian

“The best PR is always a byproduct of great behaviour.”
— Steve Rubel

“The public relations practitioner is a storyteller.”
— John M. Shaefer

“Publicity is absolutely critical. A good PR story is infinitely more effective than a front page ad.”
— Richard Branson

“Public relations is all about reputation—the result of what you do, what you say, and what others say about you.”
— John Ronson

“It’s always a risk to speak to the press; They might report what you say.”
— Hubert H. Humphrey

“When the circus comes to town they have a parade down main street. That’s publicity. Behind the elephants are the guys with brooms and barrels. That’s public relations.”
— Dan Acree

“In the digital space, attention is a currency. We earn it. We spend it.”
— Brian Solis

“PR means telling the truth and working ethically—even when all the media want is headlines and all the public wants is scapegoats. Public relations fails when there is no integrity.”
— Viv Segal

“The underlying principles of strategy are enduring, regardless of technology or the pace of change.”
— Michael Porter

“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”
— Albert Einstein

“Be so good they can’t ignore you.”
— Steve Martin

“PR companies have intelligence in spades, they need more artistry.”
— John Mescal

“Social media puts the public into PR and the market into marketing.”
— Chris Brogan

“The only way to have a friend is to be one.”
— Ralph Waldo Emerson

“The art of communication is the language of leadership.”
— James Humes

“Public relations is not a black art; it is a process of communication.”
— David A. Ropeik

“Public relations is the control of the communication environment.”
— Edward L. Bernays

“The role of public relations is to make the path to the CEO’s office as smooth as possible.”
— Stuart Ewen

“Public relations is the management of communication between an organization and its publics.”
— Lesley Robinson

“The purest treasure mortal times afford is spotless reputation; that away, men are but gilded loam or painted clay.”
— Shakespeare

Which are the best PR quotes? Don’t hesitate to send me a message, and I’ll add PR quotes to this list.

Thank you for reading this article. Please consider supporting my work by sharing it with other PR- and communication professionals. For questions or PR support, contact me via [email protected].

Jerry Silfwer
Jerry Silfwer
Jerry Silfwer, alias Doctor Spin, is an awarded senior adviser specialising in public relations and digital strategy. Currently CEO at KIX Index and Spin Factory. Before that, he worked at Kaufmann, Whispr Group, Springtime PR, and Spotlight PR. Based in Stockholm, Sweden.


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