Don’t Underestimate the Power of Public Relations
The emergence of digital advertising and social media has changed the way brands engage their customers. Although these new mediums are effective and economical ways of sharing stories with the public, traditional methods are still vital to a brand’s success. Public relations has been around as long as advertising and should be given the same consideration as its counterpart.
Advances in technology have increased brands abilities to measure advertising campaign results. Unfortunately, it is still difficult to measure the success of PR campaigns. For this reason, some brands choose to focus their marketing dollars on advertising campaigns that can produce concrete metrics. However, the value of PR should not be overlooked. According to a 2014 study by Nielsen on the role of content in the consumer decision-making process, PR is almost 90 percent more effective than advertising. This doesn’t mean that advertising isn’t important, simply that advertising and PR are two different components that brands should use to achieve one goal. Advertising is essential to building brand awareness. Once people are familiar with a brand, positive PR helps build credibility. With this in mind, here are a few tips for running a successful PR campaign.
It’s all about relationships.
There is one main difference between advertising and PR. Advertising is paid media, PR is earned media. When you pay for an ad, it’s guaranteed to get placed. With PR, there are no guarantees. This is why relationships are vital. Developing relationships with members of the media will increase the likelihood that they’ll be willing to do a story on your business. Building these relationships doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time to develop a mutual trust where the editor or reporter you’re pitching knows they can count on your to deliver what you promise, and you can trust that their story won’t cast your brand in a negative light. At Absolute, our PR team already has established relationships with professionals from every kind of media, which can be a huge benefit to your business.
We’ve all heard the old adage “no press is bad press”. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. There is such a thing as bad press, and you definitely don’t want any for your brand. At some point nearly every brand faces the possibility of bad press. It could be something as simple as a disgruntled customer posting negative comments on social media. If these comments get viewed enough times, it could become a news story. Like most things in life, a proactive approach to PR is best. Sharing positive stories will help your brand build goodwill among the public. Over time, the favorable perception of your brand that your customers developed from seeing ten positive stories is likely to outweigh the effects of one negative story.
Know how to pitch.
As I mentioned before, PR placements are not guaranteed. It’s called earned media because, well, you have to earn it. In order to earn placements, your story must be newsworthy. This means your story must be relevant and interesting to the readers, listeners or viewers of the media to which you’re pitching. And just because your story is newsworthy to some people, doesn’t mean it will be to everyone. Make sure to pitch your story to the outlet that will reach the biggest percentage of your target audience. If your company produces agricultural products, don’t try to pitch your story to a local arts and entertainment magazine. Do your research. Read articles that reporters have written. If they’ve already covered topics similar to yours, there is a good chance they’ll be interested in hearing your pitch. With that in mind, make sure your story is unique. Reporters don’t want to write the same story twice, and they definitely don’t want to write the same story as their competitor so make sure you don’t pitch to two competing outlets. After all, PR is about relationships so make sure to maintain the ones you have.
If you need help with your PR efforts, give us a call at 701-478-1111 or visit absolutemg.com/contact. We would be happy to help.