People often ask me what Veracity’s specialty is, and the more I try to come up with a concise response, the truth is, maybe there isn’t one. Classic responses could be:
The typical answer:
“We specialize in earned and owned media. Telling our clients’ stories by taking a journalistic approach to sharing what is interesting or newsworthy to their audiences. Traditionally this has been through the media, but now people get their information in a variety of ways, in addition to newspapers, media websites & blogs and TV & radio.
We also support these activities with proactive social media campaigns, advertising and making sure our clients put their best foot forward online with their website and social profiles.”
So you can see that it is a difficult (and often long winded) question to answer, not because we don’t know what we do, but because marketing and PR, the technologies they depend on and the way they are consumed, evolve so quickly.
The quick answer:
“We are a marketing agency that takes a PR approach.”
PR approach? What about the other stuff you do, that’s not PR, right?
Just about every marketing discipline could be considered PR (just ask Amy — she’ll tell you that all marketing disciplines point back to PR). A company’s website is their public face, email marketing reaches your “public,” so does advertising, influencer outreach, etc., etc.
The definition of what is considered “public” these days is vastly different than it was just a few years ago. In the dictionary sense, Public Relations means sharing your message to, and through, the public. This involved traditional media and often centered around journalists working for newspapers, magazines, TV and radio. By contrast, Advertising was buying placement in these outlets, controlling the entire message and being able to say whatever you want (within reason, of course), so the lines formed a bit like this:
Public Relations – earned exposure through a third party
Advertising – bought exposure through a third party
The problem with lines is that they can get blurry.
Where does sponsored content fall? What if we are not specifically paying for it, but providing the content and promotion of that content (and the outlet) to our network as “trade” for space, exposure and a link? How about a promoted Facebook post that provides valued information to the reader? As media types expand, so does our understanding of what really represents a reporter, journalist or advertising salesperson.
Today, a much broader set of individuals can fit any or all of these descriptions — be they editor, publisher, site owner, blogger, topical expert, influencer, celebrity, the local neighborhood gardening expert or any/all of the above. Additionally, the means in which they take ideas for editorial and advertising changes almost daily.
Our job is to attend to all the ways people share and consume information and provide value to our target market — whether that’s through traditional news, social media, or emerging technologies; paid advertising, earned editorial or some combination of them all.
So while I still don’t have a short answer for this question, the basic components of it remain the same and they are that:
We tell relevant stories to the right audience through the most appropriate channels.