CSR is the Narrative, PR is the Narrator

There is a difference between Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Public Relations (PR). Everyone appears to know what the phrase “Public Relations” implies, but not everyone knows what it means. I have been working in Iraq for years and I noticed that many companies acknowledge that it is an excellent method to strengthen their marketing strategy and online reputation, but few understand what PR includes it is a component that may increase your company’s authority, create connections with key individuals, and manage your reputation.

The goal of public relations is to educate the public, including potential consumers, business partners, influencers, regulators, and investors. It is also important to convey the right messages to the right sites and people in order to build your brand reputation. PR can “make a company,” giving it the ability to overcome practically any challenge. Nowadays, digital communication is driving public relations, and there are three main trends influencing its future: social listening, digital storytelling, and real-time marketing.

There has never been a better time to be in business, whether as an entrepreneur, author, start-up, charity, or small- to medium-sized organization. Many companies are unsure of their own brand identity and principles.

How did brands bring CSR to life during the pandemic?

Many businesses are unsure of their own brand identity and principles. How can you expect others to understand what you do and what you stand for if you do not know what your brand is? Many firms understand the connection between a successful business and great branding. However, too few people know that successful organizations place their brand CSR principles at the heart of their operations. Louis Vuitton was the first luxury brand to make disinfection gel in its French facilities, which normally produce perfume and cosmetics for names such as Dior.

They shifted within 72 hours after the French government asked businesses to assist address shortfalls in critical medical supplies. During the epidemic, we observed how businesses with CSR at their core were able to play a role. We have all heard of and loved the shoe company TOMS, whose shoes are produced from sustainable materials and place an emphasis on openness in its supply chain. Riverford Farms is another favourite since it is owned by its employees and treats everyone equally, from the bees in the field to the neighbourhood delivery man. The ice cream brand Ben & Jerry’s has a wide range of advocacy/CSR projects, including racial justice, democracy, refugees, peacebuilding, GMO labelling, fair trade, and climate change.

Many businesses now see CSR as a marketing strategy as a result of CSR regulations. CSR must be an integral part of an organization’s strategy and structure. It is about treating all stakeholders equally, including investors, employees, consumers, the community, the supply chain, and the environment. A company with a successful CSR plan is long-term and helpful to everyone. Smart judgments, ethics, and honesty have led to the success of such a company.

It recognizes, appreciates, and honours all stakeholders’ contributions to its success. For an organization that has CSR ingrained in its DNA, PR is just a means of telling its success story. Many firms employ CSR as a public relations remedy to repair the brand image that has been harmed by commercial operations. In the long term, this type of activity may cause more harm than good to the company’s reputation. Several soda businesses, for example, have established manufacturing units in rural locations near natural water reservoirs. They have depleted these reservoirs by overusing and contaminating the reserve.

It is not only immoral but also harmful when public relations highlights and promotes work that is either not done or is believed to be the organization’s responsibility. True CSR does not need to conceal the company’s wrongdoings. It directs the firm to avoid misconduct and presents a clear picture of the corporation. The link between PR and CSR is important because CSR allows you to share your story. Put your basic beliefs at the centre of your company and brand. Your fundamental beliefs are what you genuinely care about; create your firm around them and stick to them. If you cannot be genuine about social projects, do not undertake them.

Communications Agency

Harf Promotions is the first & only Iraqi Communications & Public Relations Agency