From advertorial to advocate, SEO to USP – In The Bag PR offers a jargon buster to help you navigate the world of PR.

Public Relations is an interesting industry to get your head around, most people know they need PR but aren’t entirely sure what’s going on behind the scenes at their PR agencies or with their in-house marketing teams. This blog will help explain a little about PR, and some of the most common phrases we PR types throw around.

The world of PR is second nature to us now, in this blog we offer a go-to jargon buster to help you better understand the ins and outs of PR!

The world of PR is second nature to us now, in this blog we offer a go-to jargon buster to help you better understand the ins and outs of PR!

Public Relations: “The determined, planned and sustained effort to establish and maintain mutual understanding between an organisation and its publics. Also understood as reputation management.”

In simple terms Public Relations is the practice of managing the reputation of a brand, company, organisation, or person through what is communicated about them. As an agency, In The Bag PR works with its clients to build good reputations and communicate them to different audiences. You may read about the Pommery Dorset Seafood Festival as one of the top food events in the UK on MSN Food or, enter a competition on the Toddle About Facebook page to win a BigJigs Weatherboard from Boo’s Toy Shop – these are all examples of PR in action. It’s more complex than placing an advert and can have more of an impact.

Throughout this set of blogs we will aim to offer some insight into the PR industry and advice of how you can best use PR to improve your business. We’ll start with some of the terms you’ll here us mutter to one another.

PR terms and phrases

Advertorial
This is editorial copy that you pay for, often found in trade and specialist publications. Advertorials will be labelled as such and therefore lose the element of ‘recommendation’ that much PR strives for.

Brand Advocate
A person that is all about your brand and spends part of their time talking about your brand and encouraging others to look at it. Genuine brand advocates are invaluable.

Copywriting
The production of text for publications, advertising, marketing materials, websites etc. Copywriting is a skill where points are made in an engaging and succinct manner, deliberately styled for a particular audience.

Crisis Management/Communications
Having a plan in place that can be effectively actioned when something goes wrong for an organisation, business or in your field of work. Having a communications strategy in place for if the worst happens is invaluable with helping avoid mistakes in delicate situations.

CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) 
CSR makes companies responsible for their use of resources, both environmentally and socially. The role of public relations in CSR is to communicate effectively the company or organisation’s CSR strategies, improving transparency and encouraging goodwill.

Evaluation/Reporting
A key element to all PR campaigns is their success, but how is this measured? We often evaluate PR campaigns by the impact they have had, how many times were key messages communicated, how often the information you have sent out appears in the target media, how many click-throughs to a website or landing page the social media or online coverage results in.

Feature
An in-depth article (not paid-for) about you, your business or your product. As an agency In The Bag PR will do almost anything to make these happen. A prime example.

Hashtag
A run of words that is preceded by a hash or #, originally a way of expressing a theme or topic on Twitter but is now used on other forms of social media and often in other forms of communication. Examples include: #DSF14 #luxury #British #trainers #welovePR .

Lead time
This is how long magazines plan their features and topics ahead of time, for example lifestyle publications such as Vogue will be planning its Christmas edition in July, the Daily Mail will work a couple of days to a week ahead of schedule.

Media/Presentation Training
Training designed to help you prepare for dealing with different types of the media, including live television and radio interviews. Training such as this helps you understand in your own mind how to answer the more difficult questions pertaining to your business, organisation or chosen topic.

Media Monitoring
Monitoring a company’s coverage in the press, on TV and radio, and on the internet. It is important to try and ascertain how far a PR campaign has reached, by monitoring all mentions of a campaign, across all media channels, including social media.

Media Relations
Dealing with and building up good working relationships with journalists from the broadcast and print media.

News hook
The angle by which your PR agency, or team will relate your business, organisation, product to the current news agenda. For example – It’s Prince George’s 1st birthday, Boo’s Toy Shop will send out information on the perfect gift for Prince George, or as festival season approaches NEON Footwear sends out photographs of the top 3 colours of its shoes to wear to festivals this summer. It’s all about making yourself, your business, your product relevant.

Reach
How many people you can touch with a PR campaign, for example MSN has an online circulation of 23,000,000 therefore, if your PR campaign is featured on MSN you can work to the idea that you have reached in the region of 23,000,000.

Research
Finding out background information about a company, product or person to assist with a public relations campaign. This can also include omnibus research where a large number of people are surveyed so that the results can be multiplied up to represent a national average. You can work with a research company to create questions which will be relevant to your PR campaign.

SEO
Search Engine Optimisation, the A generic term covering techniques that improve the visibility or rank of a website. This can include website design, coding, keywording, inbound links etc.

USP
Unique Selling Point, when we start working with you we will identify your unique selling point and push this out to relevant audiences, it can also often change as we target different audiences.