Integrate PR and advertising to boost sales

Professor Harlan E. Spotts, Marc G. Weinberger and Michelle F. Weinberger
Western New England University, University of Massachusetts/Amherst and Northwestern University

In B2B marketing, it is vital that PR is employed in tandem with advertising to maximise the communication value; positive press coverage can be linked directly to sales.

Publicity and advertising are considered important tools in the marketing communications toolkit. There is overwhelming evidence of traditional advertising's documented role in brand building, but there is increasing empirical evidence that publicity is as important for building the corporate brand, as opposed to just the individual product brand.

These more recent insights have seen C-Suite calls for advertising and PR to better integrate and connect their efforts to the firm's bottom lines. Many questions remain unanswered: what is the relationship between advertising, publicity, and sales? Does the tone of publicity, story topic, or volume of news matter for performance? Does a better or worse corporate reputation influence the importance of publicity relative to advertising spending? And how does spending on consumer versus business advertising relate to company sales performance?