TEKTOK: Public Relations Terminology for the AEC Professional

Feb 28 2022

Common PR terms used in the architecture, engineering, and construction industry.



A paid announcement for a product, service, business, or campaign, whether it is in print (written), broadcast (tv, radio), or digital (online) media channels with the goal of attracting public attention.



A prize or other mark of recognition given in honor of an achievement. Awards in the AEC industry can be given for a project, excellent processes, a remarkable professional, or a marketing communications campaign, among others.



A short, standardized paragraph at the end of a press release that provides editors, journalists, and readers with a high-level background on your company.



An article with a specific point of view, advice, or tips in relation to a certain topic. It is typically authored by a subject matter expert/thought leader at a company or by the company itself pulling from their industry experience and building the company's platform in the process.


Content Marketing

A marketing strategy used to attract and engage an audience by creating and online material (videos, podcasts, blogs, social media posts, etc.) that promotes brand awareness and stimulates interest in a firm’s products or services.



A report which contains the monitoring and record of all media materials — whether printed, online, radio, or television — referring to the image of the company, organization, etc.


Crisis Communications

The technologies, systems, and protocols that enable an organization to effectively communicate during a major threat to its business or reputation.


Editorial Calendar

A calendar that acts as the central hub for content production, workflows, and deadlines. It is essential for alignment of content production teams and visibility across stakeholders.



A news release or media alert sent to reporters ahead of the scheduled release of the information with the caveat the reporters agree to not publish or broadcast any news about it until a given time and date.



An official announcement typically for a company, campaign, service, or product that involves promotional efforts with the end goal of increasing public awareness. A launch is executed through a promotional marketing strategy and is initially announced through a press release.


Messaging Strategy

Foundational talking points that are aligned with your firm’s goals and overall brand messaging. These messages are weaved into a spokesperson’s media interviews, communicating the most important information related to a company, product, and/or service.



A well-crafted, highly targeted story idea sent to an editor or journalist to gauge their interest in your firm. The writing style and angle of a pitch can either make or break one’s chances of landing a story. A pitch can also incorporate photos and videos and typically ends with a call to action.


Press Kit

A set of documents with a wide range of promotional and informative documents including press releases, fact sheets, photos, videos, and other relevant material about your firm, service and/or campaign.


Press Release

An official statement given to the press for public knowledge. Press releases are typically short and to the point, providing only the information necessary to communicate with the public about a product launch, business update, or other information pertaining to your business.


Public Relations

As the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) states, “Public relations helps an organization and its publics adapt mutually to each other.” Public relations helps to influence perceptions by building relationships and shaping conversations through mass and social media about a company. 


ROI (Return on Investment)

The ratio of money gained or lost on an investment relative to the amount of money invested. For marketing metrics, it is typically the margin on increased revenue less the marketing expense, divided by the marketing expense.


SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

The process of improving your firm’s website to increase its visibility and ranking in search engine results. 


Social Media

Websites and applications that enable users to create and share ideas, thoughts, and information through virtual networks and communities. It gives users quick electronic communication of content, such as personal information, documents, videos, and photos.



Someone who is selected and trained to speak on behalf of a company, organization, or brand with the purpose to the inform an audience with key messages.


Sponsored or Boosted Posts

A social media post from a business page that, for a minimal fee, can appear higher up on its audience’s news feeds. This increases the chance that a specific following will see the post and receive more engagement. The fee depends on how many people you want the post to reach—the higher the reach, the higher the fee will be.



What can be seen as a form of advertising, many times for a particular event, project, or program. Usually, this type of advertising is looking towards establishing a deeper association between the sponsor and host.


Subject Matter Expert (SME)

The person who possesses a deep understanding of a particular subject through intensive levels of schooling or through years of professional experience with the subject. The SME has a level of understanding regarding their subject that is not common knowledge, making the person quite valuable to an organization.


Trade Publication

A publication that targets people in a specific industry and is usually not of interest to the general public. 


White Paper

A persuasive report on a specific topic that presents a problem, challenge, or issue and provides a solution. White papers can position your firm as a thought leader, present research and information about your service or product, and generate leads.


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