Objectives, Scope, Significance of Public Relations16/11/2020
Objectives of Public Relations
It achieves following objectives for the organisation:
(i) It facilitates smooth functioning of business and achievement of organisational objectives.
(ii) It builds corporate image and creates a favourable impression and creditability of company’s products.
(iii) It helps in launch of new products and maintain interest and confidence in the existing products.
(iv) It acts as a supplement to advertising in promoting existing and new products. Thus, it helps business and its associates to sell products easily.
(v) It lowers the promotional cost as it has to simply maintain staff to develop and circulate information with media or manage events.
Scope of Public Relations
A business should be seen as a responsible citizen of the community it operates in. A comprehensive community relation programme should focus on building a respectable image for the company in the community in the long run. Many organizations implement educational and health related programmes for improving quality of life of the community members. Such activities help to build their reputation along with benefiting the society.
Employees are the most valuable assets of the company and the organization had to create employee goodwill for maintaining a loyal workforce. Loyal employees are more productive and interested in the well-being of the company.
The most important component of external public is the customer. The customer is the reason behind the existence of the organization. Public relations inform the customer about introduction of new products or changes in existing ones. Public relations play a crucial role in attracting the attention of the buyer towards the company’s offerings and helps to differentiate the product from those of its competitors.
A segment of the company’s public consists of those individuals and institutions the company has financial dealings with. These include the shareholders, creditors, potential investors, banks, financial analysts, etc.
These parties have to be informed about the company’s finances, plans for expansions, plans to raise share capital, etc. A well-planned financial relations programme is necessary to improve the organization’s image and increase the value of its stock.
Political and Government Relations:
The Company has to function under the control of government rules and regulations. It has to forge proper relations with various government officials and political parties to ensure smooth functioning of the enterprise.
The role of public relations takes on vital significance during crisis situations like an accident, financial scams, bankruptcies, etc. It is the responsibility of the public relations to give the honest and accurate information to the concerned publics and assure them of remedial measures taken to control the crisis.
Significance of Public Relations
Public Relation should be an important but subtle part of the promotional mix, not just an adjunct to advertising.
The most important advantages to be gained are:
- Credibility: If the public are made aware of the benefits to be gained from a company’s products from an independent source, and that source is not being paid by the company in question, then the credibility factor is that much greater.
- Greater readership: When glancing through a newspaper it is seldom that a great deal of attention is primarily paid to advertisements. Much more attention is given to editorial or news sections. Similarly, people are more likely to divert attention from the television to do other things while the advertisements are being shown.
- Contain more information: Public relation is able to impart more information to the public than advertisements can. A glance is all that is usually given to an advertisement, whereas public relation, when presented as news, is given more attention and is therefore able to contain much more detailed information.
- Cost benefits: No direct payments are made to the media for public relation. There are obviously costs involved, but PR budgets are far less than those for advertising.
- Speed: Public relation has an advantage of speed. Information on a major development can often be issued and reported in a short space of time. Public relation can also be flexible and reactive.
Public Relation is generally looked upon as being of benefit, but sometimes both companies, and famous personalities, wish that they could avoid public relation. If there is a major accident on the premises of a company, or an oil leak from one of the oil companies’ installations offshore, that company will be on the receiving end of some very bad public relation.
They can try to minimise this by breaking the news to the media themselves, and being as helpful as possible, but damage to their reputation will still be incurred.
- Message distortion: A company has no control over what the media report about them. A press release, which a company hopes is reported in full, may in fact not be used at all, or may have only a small portion of it reported.
- Repetition: With advertisements a company can ensure that there is frequency of the message. Public Relation does not have this advantage and the message may only be given once, if at all.