What is PR?

Today’s so-called PR agencies were “Financial Agencies” during the Harshad Mehta Scam. Once the bluff was called off, those “Financial Agencies” started converting themselves into “PR” agencies with Global Tie-Ups.
Neither were they aware of the real meaning of “Public Relations” back then, nor are they any wiser now. During my tenure as Training & Professional Development Chairman at AAAI, we had requested our dear friend Sushil Bahl, Communication Street, to put together a manual for PR professionals. Sushil did a fabulous job. In this generation, I don’t know anybody who read or seen Sushil’s manual. Had they seen it, they would have been much better professionals.

Public relations advertising

Public relations advertising as a single phrase seems almost a contradiction, certainly a paradox. Not too many years ago, and even today, public relations activities are widely separated from advertising. The debate about whether to build an image or to sell a product through advertising persists.
Building image generally is termed institutional advertising; rarely, public relations advertising.
If one goes the public relations advertising route, perhaps the precept to put high on the list is that it is a mistake to look upon paid time and space as paid editorial material.
It is far better to seize upon a cause, launch a genuine public service.
Public relations advertising is not designed to incite the public to rush out to trade with you.
Companies could take certain topics and pursue them through advertising for the betterment of the public at large.
In the recent past, the campaign to create awareness for Rotavirus is a good example in my opinion.
I would like to see companies promoting:
* youth fitness
* youth opportunity
* help prevent crime
* equal employment opportunity
* aid for higher education
* our Indian heritage
The list is just off the cuff.