Effective PR

Public relations is probably the least understood area of marketing. Here we provide some advice on how to do it well:

  1. Define what you want PR to achieve for your business.
    • Set measurable objectives, such as increased customer and prospect awareness of your offer, or attracting new business.
  2. Focus on who you want PR to reach (target audience) and with what messages.
    • Defining messages to market is key to campaign success.
  3. Concentrate on your differentiators and unique selling points.
    • Are you doing something new and innovative?
      If so, “lead”  with it in your PR.
  4. Distribute your news to print, online digital and social media.
    • New products, services and people. What seems “business as usual” to you may be of real interest to others.
  5. Leverage your company’s knowledge and expertise.
    • Convert your knowledge of (say) an industry sector or product area into short articles, packaged-comment pieces or White Papers. Offer them to the relevant print and online digital media; share them with others on social media (for example, LinkedIn SIGs). Use Twitter – which is popular with journalists – to comment on industry trends.
  6. Offer selected spokespeople for media comment.
    • Press interviews result in published quotes (invaluable exposure); radio or TV/Internet interviews deliver airtime.  Your spokespeople can also comment via LinkedIn and Twitter. Ideally they should be media trained. They may be C-level but also can be Experts in their field (whatever their level in the company). Experts are popular with all types of media and (given the right preparation) it is possible to run an entire campaign centred on the media exposure generated by their knowledge and expertise.
  7. “Exploit” your customers.
    • Their positive experience of your services or products – case studies, new-business-win press releases and media interviews – provides invaluable endorsement when used by Media and is a powerful PR tool.
  8. Get to know key journalists and their publications.
    • What do they need to fill their print and online pages? Look for a match with what you can offer. Do the same for bloggers, TV and radio journalists, broadcast media researchers and producers.
  9. If you are doing your own PR, be prepared to devote time to it.
    • Build it into your business planning. “On, off”  occasional PR can still be useful, but it is less effective than a sustained campaign.
  10. There is more to public relations than media relations.
    • Networking via industry associations; conference platforms; new market initiatives & promotions are all PR activities. Consider them in your planning.