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The difference between marketing and PR

The difference between marketing and PR is sometimes difficult to see, even for those who work in the industry. Although goals and some methods are very similar, there is a clear division between the two.

Simply put, marketing focuses on making sales by marketing products, services or business ideas. PR, or Public Relations, is more focused on the brand’s positive reputation, whether it’s a company or an individual.

The goals for marketing and PR

The goals for a team in PR are about:

  • Sell ​​a product, brand, or person by working to create a positive reputation. This through various communication channels such as media and social channels.

The goal of the marketing team focuses on:

  • Reach customers and drive sales.
  • Increasing sales is a key figure that the team is also evaluating against.

Everyday work for marketing and PR

On a daily basis, the PR team mostly focuses on the following tasks:

  • Manage company messages
  • Create press releases
  • Secure opportunities for public speaking
  • Build the company, brand or person’s reputation in the media
  • Manage media relationships

A PR agency can also help clients create a communication strategy or a crisis management plan.

Those who work with marketing focus instead on:

  • Create and manage campaigns with ads
  • Secure traditional and digital advertising opportunities
  • Conduct market research for upcoming marketing campaigns
  • Create materials for new launches, brochures, PDFs and the like
  • Manage your company’s or brand’s social media

Measurements for marketing and PR

When the PR team looks at data and statistics, they are particularly interested in:

  • The number of positive press that has been created online, in specific media
  • Prizes won at industry-related events
  • Extra “buzz” that has been created from social media, for example via influencers
  • The general reception of the “buzz” etc.

The marketing team, on the other hand, measures instead:

  • Does the campaign meet the sales target?
  • ROI from various strategies and campaigns
  • Did the “buzz” or increase in traffic to the site increase sales?
  • Did the number of followers increase after the content was marketed on different platforms?

Target groups for marketing and PR

In general, there is a difference in the target group around which marketing and PR develop their communication strategies.

  • The target audience that the PR team usually tries to reach is virtually unlimited. They may focus on personal or campaign-based strategies to reach consumers, the media or even employees. Depending on the company’s current needs, PR can create individual communications for investors while working to create “buzz” around a press release.
  • The target group for the marketing team is often broader, given that they either want to reach customers or prospects (then we assume that PR handles internal communication). The marketing team can also work with ABM, digital marketing and email marketing which involves segmentation and reaching specific groups, such as potential new customers or current customers.


Although there are several major differences between marketing and PR, they may not fully work in different directions. To be successful in today’s media, marketing and PR need to work together. Social media marketing and influencer marketing are two strategies that both marketing and PR need to address.

There are also several benefits to collaborating between marketing and PR strategies, for example with content on different platforms, additional optimization opportunities, continuing to market the brand, and much more!


As Australia’s premier digital marketing agency, GK Web Agency has a reputation for delivering marketing that works. We make the web with an team of digital marketing experts. So if you’re looking to grow your business with a stellar marketing strategy, reach out to us! We’d love to chat with you about how we can take your marketing to the next level.

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