Social Media: The Tug of War between PR and Marketing Teams

By May 25, 2021No Comments

Social media is always a heated topic. Its impact cannot be overemphasized, and perhaps you came across this article through social media itself. Social media is integral to the growth of organisations. Does social media belong to the Public Relations or Marketing department of organizations? This is a controversial question no doubt.

Before we get into this discourse, let us take a look at social media and how it fits into today’s ever-changing digital landscape. At its heart, social media has always been about connectivity. It is used to raise brand awareness, reach new markets, and connect with customers.

Given the complexities of social media, it is natural to attribute it to public relations. Despite this, many businesses fail to determine who owns their social media strategy, or to even formulate a strategic social media plan in the first place.

Both marketing and public relations departments, however, have the same aim of gaining attention, dialogue, and clicks for a client. Both teams are in charge of creating a brand’s voice, crafting appropriate public content, and community outreach.

“What social media channels are currently in use? Who manages those now? Who determines the content? When do we post or do we even post regularly? How do we respond to comments or likes or negative comments? How do we measure to see if what we’re doing is working?” These questions begin a process that requires more focus, attention to detail and careful deliberation than even large-scale companies realize.

But ultimately, only an agency’s leadership can decide which route is the best when it comes to social media marketing for a brand. Both departments can recognize strengths and learn that they do not need to do it all.

It should be noted that the client and his/ her brand should always come first in such decisions. Each client embodies their own unique set of needs and services that should be customized accordingly. This way, agencies don’t define specific niches dedicated to each departments which can potentially harm a client’s brand awareness.

It all boils down to the objectives and core values of a brand. If you were expecting a definite answer from this article, sorry to disappoint you. However, a lesson to be taken from this is how the process of evolving is necessary and this defines the core competencies of various agencies.

Both departments are also inevitably evolving, hence, it is wise to evolve along with them and integrate the elements of each department into another.

We want to know what you think. How does your organization manage social media, and what’s your special ingredient? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

By: Oluwatoni Oluwasanya

UNILAG Student Ambassador

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