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Public relations. To some business owners, it is a mysterious dark art that they don’t fully understand. To others, it is front and central to their business success. If you are in the former camp, now is the time to move over to the latter. In a world where reputation and public perception is everything, PR helps to make sure that your business stands out from the crowd in the right way. Though it is a complex field, here are a few of the basics which can help you get started.
To start off with, public relations is all about getting noticed. When you are planning a strategy, you are aiming to get customers talking about you, and to do this, you have to stand out from the crowd. Ultimately, PR is there as a tool that will help you reach your market objectives. And though building strong relationships is a part of PR, you don’t necessarily need them to get started as long as you come up with a publicity idea that interests them.
Managing the Media
Choosing the right media outlets to send out your press releases is essential. You want to pick publications that are going to be read by your target audience, so try to build up a personal contact file of these journalists over time. After you have sent out a press release, it is always worth following up if you don’t hear anything back again. If you think that it is important that a particular piece of information goes into a specific publication, you could offer the editor an exclusive story. Remember, the media are only interested in stories, not products or services.
The Perfect Press Release
The media are your customer: they are buying the stories that you are selling, so you need to turn yourself into a great salesman. The press releases you send out are your first point of contact, and editors receive hundreds of these on a daily basis. To begin with, you should read this guide on how to write a successful press release. Beyond this, you could come up with gimmicks like offering a free booklet or report. Each press release has to have a very clear angle – generic releases will simply not get picked up.
Promote Your Blog
The online image of your business is becoming more and more important, and your blog is central to this. Try submitting your blog to specific ‘blog search engines’ as a way of getting noticed. Make sure that you share it through all your social media channels, and interact with anyone who takes the time to comment on it. And you should also actively participate on other people’s blog pages so you can draw people back onto your own.
Public relations is a tool that is there to help your business generate coverage and attention. Try out these tips and tricks to start off with to see what a difference they could make to your company.