Chapter 17 in Sietel’s “The Practice of Public Relations” discusses integrated marketing communications, and how marketing has changed as avenues to do so have evolved and grown immensely in quantity. Social media websites have changed marketing in a huge way. Companies can now market themselves and their products on/through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs, product placement, and still in all of the traditional ways (TV, magazines, newspapers, billboards, etc). If a company isn’t keeping up with the new avenues of marketing, they fall behind and are at a serious disadvantage to their competitors.

Chapter 17 clears up a lot of things for me that I’ve always been sort of confused by. Mainly, the distinct differences between marketing, advertising, and public relations. These three categories have always kind of blended together into one for me, and I’ve never really understood the differences. Sietel explains that marketing “literally defined, is the selling of a service or product through pricing, distribution, and promotion” (p. 342). Marketing is a broad concept, that encapsulates anything involved with a company trying to market their particular products. Advertising, on the other hand, is a more specific subset of marketing. Sietel explains advertising as “marketing that involves paying to place your message in more traditional media formats, from newspapers and magazines to radio and television to the Internet and outdoors.” (p. 342) Advertising is, in most cases, what we as consumers see on an everyday basis. We are presented with advertisements on the radio, television, in our favorite magazines/ newspapers, etc. Advertising doesn’t just have to market single product, but can also serve to market the entire brand.

Public relations  is slightly different than both marketing and advertising. Marketing and advertising are things that the organizations putting them out have control over. Public relations doesn’t give the organizations much control over the message. Sietel liberally defines PR as “the use of unbiased, objective, third-party endorsement to relay information about that organization’s products and practices.” (p. 342)