This chapter has provided the basic knowledge of public relations models and subfunctions (both corporate and agency) necessary to understand and expand your knowledge of this vast and ever-changing profession. The models and subfunctions are those that generally comprise public relations, although they do vary by industry. The organization size, type, amount of government regulation, and even the organization’s competition will determine whether it has all or some of these subfunctions present in-house, outsources them as needed, or relies on public relations agencies. Normally an organization will have a majority of the subfunctions on this list. They may be structured as part of the public relations department, or as independent units reporting to it, to another function, or to senior management.
Knowing the terminology related to the subfunctions helps to identify different forms of public relations and combinations of these efforts in practice. In order to achieve the most with public relations initiatives, it is important to know which subfunctions must exist, which work well with one another, and which need independence or autonomy. Further in the book, we will apply this knowledge to examine the structuring of the public relations department and subfunctions. We will examine how organizational structure has an impact on the models of public relations employed and the subfunctions that exist in practice.