Creative Marketing Can Enhance and Reinforce Public Relations

I find myself increasingly interested in what companies are doing to stand out and be creative without straying from the image they want the public to associate them with-other than those obnoxious ads on search engines like Yahoo that suddenly take over the entire page and hide the close button.

Throughout my research (both academic and recreational) I have become more and more convinced that the marketing communication channels aren’t separate entities but build upon,  reinforce and/or strengthen one another: especially marketing and public relations. Recently I came across an article on Inc. titled “12 Memorable Event Marketing Campaigns”. As I skimmed through the images, I couldn’t help but think they all had a little bit of a public relations element to them.

1/4 of a million bouncy balls were released throughout San Francisco in a promotional stunt by Bravia to promote their new line of televisions. It took 6 days to clean up.

Bravia, using the event described above, was able to convey an image of creativity (or at the very least uniqueness because no other company has thought to release that many bouncy balls in that…random of a fashion). They were also able to hint at the social responsibility of the company by picking up the balls afterwards (even though it’s expected).

The Minneapolis based Mono Agency promoted Meyer by creating a fountain into a larger-than-life “washbin” with balloons representing the soap. The balloons each contained samples that were grabbed by onlookers.

Meyer was able to not only promote their product and distribute samples but also convey ingenuity and creativity. However, they took Bravia’s process a step further and were able to inform viewers and sample grabbers that each sample was donating $2 to charity. This helps reinforce and strengthen the public perception that Meyer is a responsible, worthwhile company to patronize.

Another article on Multy Shades titled “30 Truly Creative Marketing Campaigns” showcases a few others that I wanted to touch on to demonstrate the link between marketing and public relations.

3M placed money sandwiched between pieces of its security glass and gave passer-by the opportunity to dry and destroy it.

Not only did this work from a marketing standpoint as far as generating awareness and sales of the product through demonstrating it works in a unique way, it also added to the public image that 3M is innovative, creative, and ultimately cares about its products: enough that they would let thousands of people try to destroy it. They put enough effort into their products to ensure they work how they’re supposed to-like security glass being used to protect money.

Businesses have become increasingly creative with everything from bags, to business cards, to advertisements…try searching “creative business cards” or “creative marketing campaigns” or look at either of the websites I mentioned as proof. I think that because creativity is becoming so much more a part of marketing, and the campaigns now have the ability to go viral and promote word of mouth, the reputation and perception of the company is inserted into every single interaction the public has with it. Add into the mix that shoppers are becoming more curious and demanding of their retailers and you get a public that wants full disclosure, wants unique products, and wants to know companies as people: not just organizations; they want to know who they’re dealing with.

Gone are the days where public relations should be called upon in times of crisis or focused on solely at the beginning of a business, and when marketing meant those people in the mall who hound you about voting or new perfumes. This is the day of public marketing relations: when companies make themselves stand out in obvious ways while enhancing and/or promoting their image in subliminal ones.


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