Every one understands what a doctor, lawyer or teacher does. However there are many service providers who need to clarify what they do so that potential customers know what they are getting. Terms like consultant, business coach and yes what I do for a living —-public relations need some further clarification..

When people ask me what I do and when I tell them public relations, I usually talk about promotion and increased media exposure. When I get done, the other person usually squints and says—-so, exactly what do you do.

To illustrate what public relations is, I want to share a story with you that I heard Alan King tell. I am sure you have heard of the great historical event — the “parting of the Red Sea”. The enemy is advancing on Moses and his people. Moses is now standing at the edge of the Red Sea and standing next to him his public relations manager. I’ll bet you didn’t know that Moses had a PR manager. Moses turns to his PR manager and says,“the boats, did you get the boats?”. The PR manager looks up at Moses and says, “Oh Moses, I am so sorry, I got backed up on projects and deadlines, the server was down…I’ll make it up to you but I forgot the boats.”

Moses, in anger turns to his PR guy and says, “Well, what the hell do you expect me to do now, part the Red Sea, move my thousands of people across and close it up again so the enemy doesn’t kill us.“The PR guy looks up at Moses and says, “Moses, you do that and I’ll get you two pages in the Old Testament.”

Moral of the story…what is basic to you may not be basic to others. Find a few understandable ways to explain what you do and show value.