Why personal authenticity matters in marketing & PR

In the highly competitive world of PR, marketing, writing and all things creativity, it’s easy to get caught up in everyone is doing by calling looking for inspiration.

There is great value in being inspired by others’ work. It’s a necessary part of learning. But when we continually look to others for inspiration or expertise while neglecting to create and share our own, or by undervaluing what we have to offer, we end up frustrated, cruelly comparing ourselves or blissfully unaware that we are a producing lifeless cookie cutter work.

It might be good work. But it’s not our work and it’s not authentic.

PR and marketing are highly subjective fields that can’t be boxed in solely by numbers and static rules. They are about people, and people are fickle and unique. There is no one size fits all. So while certain fundamental skills and knowledge are necessary, it still boils down to people.

That’s why as PR pros (and all creatives), personal authenticity matters: your approach, your experience, your knowledge (even if it didn’t come from a textbook), your skills, your personality and your “touch”, might be exactly what someone is looking for and, it may be that your approach is what actually gets results, no matter how “un-” or “not” they may appear by glossy, big budget standards.

When it comes to building the brands (including our own) and promoting the causes we choose, perhaps the best expertise we can offer is personal authenticity coupled with passion driven hustle, boldness to take risks and a heart for building relationships. Skills can, and should, be learned and knowledge acquired, but formal training, facts and figures isolated from authenticity and heart will never result in genuine interest and connection.

So look around. Learn. Be inspired. But don’t compare and don’t undervalue what you offer. The right campaign, artist, cause, or event is looking for it.

Originally published on Medium