This is the Venn diagram of corporate awareness.
Getting public relations, marketing, and branding to work together in an organisation can sometimes be challenging.
To clarify boundaries and overlaps, I’ve created a basic model around the shared goal of establishing and maintaining awareness.
The Venn Diagram of Corporate Awareness
Public relations, marketing, and branding have one common goal: all three functions are united in establishing and maintaining corporate awareness.
The Venn diagram emphasises the importance of internal and alignment cooperation when it comes to:
Read also: The Venn Diagram of Corporate Awareness
“By complying with good corporate governance practice, awareness can be raised and preventive measures can be taken in addressing society’s issues through proper society disclosure.”
Source: International Journal of Business and Society
Why is branding excluded from customer interest? As a strategic discipline, branding shouldn’t be tasked with the practicalities of generating customer interest via paid, earned, shared and owned media channels.
Why is marketing excluded from perception management? Marketing promotes products and services in the marketplace, so there’s typically a tonality mismatch for sensitive reputational challenges.
Why is public relations excluded from value proposition? Public relations manage relationships with stakeholders, publics, and influencers, not promoting products or services in the marketplace.
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No one is basing their attitudes and behaviours on reality; we’re basing them on our perceptions of reality.
Walter Lippmann (1889–1974) proposed that our perceptions of reality differ from the actual reality. The reality is too vast and too complex for anyone to process. 1Lippmann, Walter. 1960. Public Opinion (1922). New York: Macmillan.
Those who can manage the perceptions of publics can control their attitudes and behaviours.
The research on perception management is focused on how organisations can create a desired reputation:
“The OPM [Organizational Perception Management] field focuses on the range of activities that help organisations establish and/or maintain a desired reputation (Staw et al., 1983). More specifically, OPM research has primarily focused on two interrelated factors: (1) the timing and goals of perception management activities and (2) specific perception management tactics (Elsbach, 2006).”
Source: Organizational Perception Management 2Hargis, M. & Watt, John. (2010). Organizational perception management: A framework to overcome crisis events. Organization Development Journal. 28. 73-87.
Today, our perceptions are heavily influenced by news media and influencers, algorithms, and social graphs. Therefore, perception management is more important than ever before.
“We are all captives of the picture in our head—our belief that the world we have experienced is the world that really exists.”
— Walter Lippmann
The Four Models of PR
In the Excellence study, Grunig and Hunt (1984) developed the most widely cited PR model in academic circles. It’s not one, but rather four models in sequence:
Model 1: Press Agent/Publicity—The organisation uses media manipulation to shape the narrative deceptively.
Model 2: Public Information Model—The organisation is practising one-way communication to disseminate information with little or no feedback from recipients.
Model 3: Two-Way Asymmetrical Model—The organisation engages in two-way communication to persuade and establish power structures.
Model 4: Two-Way Symmetrical Model—The organisation engages in two-way communication to find common ground and mutual benefits.
The researchers found that Model 4 is the best way to practice public relations.
Read also: 3 PR Approaches: Excellence, Rhetorical, and Critical
|1||Lippmann, Walter. 1960. Public Opinion (1922). New York: Macmillan.|
|2||Hargis, M. & Watt, John. (2010). Organizational perception management: A framework to overcome crisis events. Organization Development Journal. 28. 73-87.|