All ads, all articles, all images, and all communications from you must be aimed at creating great, ongoing relationships with your clients or constituents. Your marketing vehicles should give them a reason to want to know you -- moreover -- to need to know you. Maybe not now, maybe sometime in the future when that need arises. Once you have a client, marketing is about keeping them interested. Just like, yes, a marriage . . . a good one.
Branding is matching who you are with the right audience. It starts with digging. Spelunking, even. To get to the bottom of who you are as an organization. Once you're clear about your beliefs and what you have to offer, you can begin creating a brand that will attract just the right audience.
Those who embrace public relations recognize that businesses exists by permission of their publics - employees, clients, communities and governments.
The return from public relations requires patience, but it can be great. Public relations involves communicating fairly and openly within and outside the organization. Giving back to communities. And creating a dialog with regulators and governments.
From a risk perspective, it is one of the great protections. If you come under scrutiny from the media, a client or a regulator, public relations can help you to be viewed as a good organization that made a mistake rather than an "evil" organization. Moreover, the goodwill public relations can generate pays off in high employee morale, client retention, referrals, positive news stories and countless intangibles that run through the current of the entire organization.
Marketing and public relations can get you in the door, but you've got to do what it takes to be invited to stay. So do what you do well, and you'll hang on to all you've gained through marketing.