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Social Media Agencies vs. PR: Who Should Handle Your Influencer Marketing?

Does your brand use a PR company for influencer marketing? The role of public relations has shifted from earned media to wrangling social influencers. But the fact is, influencer marketing has disguised itself as earned media, when in reality it’s a branch of paid social advertising. Because of this, traditional PR agencies don’t lend themselves to finding and paying people to evangelize your brand.

Social media agencies are built around engagement and analytics. We live on social media and interact with your audience on a daily basis. It’s only natural that we understand which influencers best suit your brand’s needs.

So, why not have your social media agency help determine your social influencer strategy?

Related Article: Why Social Media Should Have A Seat At The Strategy Table


Public relations companies aren’t equipped to handle this part of your marketing. Social agencies pay for access to tracking and analytics software, so we are monitoring social geotags and Twitter streams nonstop. PR agencies focus on metrics like impressions–and may not compile your full social media report.

These numbers may look great on paper, but they rarely tell the whole story. The one metric that matters is sales. How many people or businesses are purchasing your product or service? Your social media agency can track and explain how all these other metrics affect that bottom line.


You shouldn’t hire a social media agency to gather social influencers because we’re telling you to. You should do it because it makes sense.

When reaching out to personalities on Instagram, Snapchat, and Vine, we don’t just look at follower count–we dig deep into the quality of someone’s followers. How many of them are fake accounts? Anyone can buy thousands of Instagram followers, but they won’t have the same impact on your profits. Fake accounts–or “bots”–are one of the many reasons impressions is a misleading metric.

Does the influencer’s audience really tie into your brand’s goals? Sure, a million Snapchat friends is impressive, but do these consumers fit your target demographics and psychographics? We break down all of this information for you before we even get to work on your project.

Using our sharp understanding of these metrics, social media agencies can locate social influencers who speak to your target audience–and to your marketing objectives.
PR’s role may be shifting toward social. But we’ve been here for years.


Stay tuned for more of our blogs.

Isaac Brody (
aka“Ike”) is the owner and CEO of Socialike, a Manhattan-based creative agency that specializes in social and digital marketing. Isaac comments on trends in marketing. Socialike’s clients, whether they’re in natural products, hospitality or any other industry, get concepts that differentiate them–along with trackable results.