08 Oct How To Maximize Your PR
We all want the most bang for our buck for what we can afford, whether it is getting the most bells and whistles with a new car or a plate of food with the most variety. Your business should be no different; it’s simply good practice to make your hard-earned dollars work for you as much as they can. But how can you get the most out of your public relations efforts? Here are a few tips to help you keep your brand out there and in the minds of your target audience with maximum results.
1. Create a press release.
Why wait for the news to come to you? Make your own news by creating a press release and send it out via PR Newswire, 24-7 Press Release, ClickPress, etc. whenever you have something newsworthy, which could include: grand openings, new hires, client acquisitions, new products and/or services, events, etc.
Now more than ever, marketing and PR is a conversation, not a lecture. Position yourself as a brand that feels more like an old friend than a college professor. Talk WITH your customers/audience, not at them. Use social media as an avenue to have conversations with your customers— and don’t limit it to talking about your product/service. Talk about how hot the summer is or how pretty the leaves are this autumn. Talk about a funny childhood memory. Post pictures from company gatherings or community events or silly things you find on the internet or while out and about. You get the idea. You want your consumers to see you as more than a company that sells stuff.
3. Get out there.
Volunteering is a great way to not only do some good for the community, but it’s also a great way to have people see that you and your brand care about something other than making money. This is not to say you should volunteer solely for PR purposes. Consumers are smarter than that, and they WILL pick up on it. (More than a few people find using a charity for personal gain is at the pinnacle of bad taste.) Find a charity/organization you are sincerely passionate about, be supportive, and be involved.
4. Be responsive.
What good is providing your customers with a medium to interact with you if you’re not going to interact back? (Hint: It’s never good.) Consumers do not like to be ignored, so make sure you keep in touch with your audience as much as possible. Answer serious inquiries and the occasional silly catechization with enthusiasm and frequency. Aside from shoddy service and/or a bad product, nothing puts consumers off more than being treated as if they don’t exist and, thus, don’t matter. Your customers matter. Prove it to them.
Take to the blogosphere to write about things pertinent to your industry and/or your audience. Make your content both helpful and enjoyable and appropriate for your audience. You have something to say and something to offer, and a blog is a great place to get your ideas/tips/stories out there for all to enjoy.
6. Have fun.
If you’re enjoying what you’re doing, it shows and it’s contagious. Likewise, if you’re miserable and you dread every day you spend promoting your brand, consumers will notice and move on to happier faces. Sure it’s a business and it’s a job, but that doesn’t mean it’s a jail sentence and your every move is dictated by others. Have fun meeting people. Enjoy selling your product. Relish in seeing your brand being used by others. Your target will pick up on your good vibes, and that is never a bad thing.
It’s been said that there is no such thing as bad publicity. Poppycock. Bad publicity leaves a bad impression in people’s minds that is near impossible to fully correct. But by following a few simple rules and keeping your brand in a positive light, your publicity will bring great rewards to both you and your target audience.