Why Small Business Should Leverage PR More Than Advertising
August 13, 2013 § Leave a comment
Public relation works along to make customers emotionally attached to a brand by creating and sharing news about the company. They create awareness and demand for what you offer by blending social media, community participation, public speaking opportunities, media commentary, and long-term relationships with reporters leading to press and online coverage. Whether a small or large business, you can take advantage of the power of public relations through social media in creating long lasting relationships with customers and target market.
Advertising, the real effort of public relations, can help to build business and brand awareness among potential clients, with minimum cost. Small businesses continuously use PR as a source to obtain free advertisements about their products and services. Also, digital and creative PR is an effective way to create worthy word of mouth advertisements due to the greater credibility, availability of information in editorial articles and interviews with your company personnel.
Strategic application of public relations can be one of the least expensive and most efficient method through which a small business can grow, as the awareness and word-of-mouth attained is priceless for a small company. Here are the valuable PR tactics that a small business can leverage.
1. Know Your Target Audience:
A successful PR campaign is not sending marketing displays through social media. It is about creating a coherent strategy in order to convey your messages to the potential audience. The messages you share, the medium used and the way people receive it play critical roles in your business. Understand your audience, whether they are your own clients, magazine writers, academics, or influencers of other stripes. Take enough time to understand them and to target your efforts towards them. After getting a clear picture, you can strategically target your ideas, messages and content for them.
2. Get Connected To Wider Audience:
While PR executives are hiring new recruits, they look for active personal social networks. If they can engage a small group of people, then it is easy to deal with the larger masses. So, instead of focusing on numbers, give priority to wider audience who are sure to come your way.
3. Authenticity is Important:
It is important that whatever you promote through PR is near and dear to your heart, which is easier for a small business owner, than for larger corporations. It is easier for us to relate emotionally to our audience and to build a connection with what we do. Many business owners go after making the sale and they completely forget about the relationship. As a business owner, you need to connect correctly and authentically with every member of your target market.
4. Build A Budget:
When you work with limited resources you may not be having much of a marketing budget to move with. Determine how much you can spend over a given period of time and fix the way you do it. Also, save by doing many works by yourself and the funds for swag, meals, and contests that may require modest outlay of real cash.
5. Outline A Plan:
Without a good PR plan, these tactics will not work and won’t get the results you are looking for. Set your goals and look back into those goals with concrete strategy and tactics to reach them. Make a calendar and be sure in sticking to it for running a disciplined business by creating lists of reporters, blogs, and Twitter users that you will target to support your strategy.
6. Leverage Others And Share Your Ideas:
Find out thought leader, help them to understand and love your brand. Also, make sure to follow key users on Twitter to get a better idea about their personality and interests. Contact them and make good over time relationships, thus engage them with your brand by talking audiences.
Be an active part and generate content to contribute to a wider community. Developing business partners can offer more customers that can be a discount for your services or products. Make your team alert to read businesses blogs and comments in order to tweet big links and also to follow others on Twitter who does the same.
7. Pitch Reporters:
Interesting stories are the core of any media outlet. Writers and editors are looking for great story ideas and as long as you make a timely approach on topic, they will listen to it. Always aim in developing the relationship by asking questions, through real-time feedback, and developing a sound relationship which allows you to share useful ideas, thus giving the writer the benefit of your own perspective and personality. Also, make sure to do correct follow up, as they are busy people and might not respond immediately, which doesn’t mean that they are not interested in your work.
8. People Love Gifts:
In order to maintain a smooth customer relationship, this can be a useful trick. Potential customers are common people who love trinkets, for whatever reason, they just fall up on anything you are giving away. But, always remember to put your company’s name or logo on whatever gifts you are handling, or else it is useless.
9. Know Your Resource And Be A Resource:
For your press releases there are many free and cheap sites like PRWeb, Free Press Release, and PRLog are a few out of many. Also, make quality contents to position yourself as a valuable authority on your industry, profession or on any particular topic. Search maximum available resources to provide information to the media and customers. Be an expert in writing your ideas to distribute to other readers and professionals, also blog on topics you are familiar with and make your readers to comment on it. Excellent content can gain you more popularity by publishing those case studies in other trade publications and blogs.
10. Public Relation An Ongoing Process:
Effective public relation can be maintained through frequent and consistent communication with the public to promote the brand. To make it effective, work on PR everyday and on every level of your business, that is from the way you deal with your employees to how effectively you manage a crisis situation. Make sure that you constantly consider the image you are projecting, which is good one to retain.
All business owners show high expectations when it comes to public relation coverage, but they are disappointed when the phone does not ring back when a feature article or news brief appears in the media. PR is the architect of credibility, so you take pride in the credibility and give it the tool to reap success in your business. In short, PR is ultimately a relation, which focuses on the manner you follow to enhance relationships, which will lead you to the zenith.