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PR vs Content Marketing: Which one Should you Choose for your Business?

Updated: Oct 2, 2020

Following the shift from traditional to digital media, the line between PR and content marketing has become a blur in the minds of both businesses and the public. Maybe PR is a more familiar term, that has been around for a while, but over the years, it has changed its playground and made a new friend - content marketing.

At first sight, they seem to have similar meanings, but what are their differences, and more importantly, which should you choose for your business?

Let’s explore together.

pr vs content marketing

Defining the terms

According to PRSA’s definition, “public relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics.”

Businesses, individuals, and organizations use PR with the main goal of cultivating a positive reputation with the public, through various means of communication.

Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as “a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.”

So both have the goal of maintaining a relationship with the public and both use communication tactics to achieve this goal. The details in approach bring up the differences.


PR uses a more direct approach in communicating to reach out to the right people. The success factors include a strong relationship with journalists, editors, and influencers, finding the right context in place and time, and using opportunities to communicate important announcements and special events.

Examples of PR tactics:

  • Publicity;

  • Crisis communication planning and management;

  • Influencer relations;

  • Event management;

  • Speaking opportunities.

As the name says, content marketing is all about creating valuable content that helps or entertains audiences. As opposed to PR, content marketing has a more consistent flow, a well-defined target, and offers full control to businesses.

Some of the content marketing tactics involve:


Having different tactics means different ways to measure success.

PR has to earn its media coverage, so naturally, the more places where the news is published and the more authority the media outlet has, the better. Generally, metrics in PR consist of media placements, press mentions, and impressions.

Content marketing doesn’t have to “fight” for its place, as the content is published on the organization’s own media. But it has to grab attention and generate engagement and action. The success is measured in page views, referrals, and driven leads.

Which is the best choice for your organization?

To answer this question, start with two more questions: are you trying to strengthen your relationship with the media and get more coverage, or are you trying to drive traffic to your site and generate leads?

The truth is that both of these goals can be better achieved with a combination of PR and content marketing.

The content you’re creating must be valuable but also visible. Journalists, editors, and influencers can give your content the boost it needs to go viral. And by creating quality content, the easier it will be to grab their attention, even before you reach out to them. On top of that, you can efficiently use your efforts in content creation to share it on your own media and to the larger public.


If you want to find out more about this topic and how it can be applied to your particular business, feel free to get in touch with us at or +4 0743 037 222.

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