Although used interchangeably, there are key differences between public relations and media relations.
Media relations is an organic activity that involves working with media to maximize earned media coverage as opposed to paying for advertising.
Alternatively, public relations involves the set of activities that manages how a brand or company communicates with, builds awareness of, and shapes perception among the public. Public relations often includes media relations.
While similar in the activities executed, both media relations and public relations have two different set of audiences. In media relations, the goal is to develop and nurture relationships with media outlets that could potentially cover news and media related to your story. With public relations, it’s about the audience and the perception that is created among them.