PR Tips 2: What do you want to achieve?

When a new client comes to me very  often they start the conversation by saying something along the lines of “I need PR help.” or “I want a press release writing”.  Both are reasonable requests.  I then asking them “What do you want to achieve?” Very often they respond that they want people to know about x, y or z.

But the question what do you want to achieve?  Is bigger than it may first appear.    As a business tackling PR think about what you want any PR or marketing activity to result in.  Do you want:

  • To increase footfall to a venue
  • Increase sales of a product or service
  • Get more enquiries about the service/product you offer
  • To convert viewers to buyers
  • Drive more people to your website
  • Just generally raise awareness of what you offer

Your answer to this question will determine how the PR strategy is executed and what calls to action are made in any releases, marketing and/or social media.

PR Tips: 1 People don’t buy your product. They buy your story.

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I have been thinking about the most common things that come up when people first speak to me about working with them on a PR campaign.  With that in mind I thought that I would create some short blogs outlining my top PR tips.

When people  get in touch they usually want me to spread the word about their product or service, which is great as that is what I am here to do but quite often  unless the product or service is totally unique it will be hard to get coverage.

All is not lost though, there is always another angle and this is where your story comes into play.  Most people have a story but very often, as it is just part of their life they don’t realise that the story would be of interest to others.

This is why when I first start working with a client I sit down with them and have an in-depth chat not just about their business but their background and how they got to where they are now.

Have a think.  What’s your story?

 

 

 

10 Ways PR can help your business

cropped-33362-beck-call-public-relations-logo.jpgIf you think that PR is just for big businesses think again. PR is a tool that can help all businesses. It’s a cost effective way of spreading the word about all the great things you’re doing, which will help differentiate your company from your competitors.
So, how can PR help your business?
1. It’s cost effective
A press release is a fraction of the cost of an advertisement and can often only be the cost of a call or email to the right person. An example of this is, over the past year I have been working with a client. The PR coverage achieved for them has reached more than 800,000 people and if it had been paid for advertising would have cost nearly £45,000.
2. Raises awareness
PR lets people know that you exist and what you offer. The more people see or hear about your business the more likely it is that you will spring to mind when they require your services.
3. Can improve your reputation
Everybody has an opinion about companies they come into contact with whether it be staff, customers, suppliers or investors. Having somebody work with you on your PR will allow you to manage your reputation.
4. It’s good for your bottom line
PR is less expensive than advertising and the benefits of PR can be much more substantial. One good media placement can lead to a substantial increase in sales and growth, and because many small businesses have a unique story to tell, they are interesting to the media.
5. Build brand values
Every business has messages they want to convey to their customers about their product, the type of business they are and who they are. Public relations is ideal for communicating these and, over time, helping you build a loyal customer base.
6. Gaining credibility
Great PR can give your business credibility. A positive endorsement from a third party in the form of a news story generates much more credibility than an advertisement.
7. Builds online reputation
In a world where more and more news is online, PR can help build your online reputation and improve your SEO. Once the positive press is online, there it will stay, meaning that whenever anybody searches for you they find stories about you. Your business will reap the benefits.
8. Supports other marketing and advertising activities
PR is a great way of supporting your other marketing activities. By integrating all of your marketing you can ensure that consistent messages are being delivered. If you are running an advert this will probably see an increase in people searching for information about your company, so it can help to have some positive informative articles out there
9. Can assist in a crisis
No business wants to be in a crisis but if it does happen PR can help turn it around and ensure that you get the right messages out to the public, staff and your stakeholders.
10. Help you achieve your business goals
Whether your goals are to increase sales or to raise your profile, PR can help you achieve them.
Hopefully you found these tips useful and informative. If you would like further advice or support then please get in touch. Call us 07974 306914 or email sayhello@beckandcallpr.co.uk

Common PR Myths and Misconceptions

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As you can imagine, having worked in  Public Relations for the past 14 years I have heard people say many things about the industry and the people who work in it.  Here are some of my favourite misconceptions about the wonder world of what we call PR

PR and Advertising are the same

If I had a pound for every time somebody said “I don’t need any help with PR as I already advertise” I would definitely be a lot richer than I am now.  Whilst PR and advertising do inhabit the same ballpark they are not the same.  Put simply with advertising you are paying to tell the world about how great your business or product is, with PR a third party is telling everybody how great you are.

 

PR people twist the truth

This is a common one.  People believing that the job of a PR is to make something bad look good.  Whilst PR can help if you’re in a crisis to make sure you present your business in the best light and get the relevant messages out there, we are not there to lie.  If we lie it defeats the object of what we are trying to do, if we tell the world that a really bad product is great, we’ll soon get found out and the client will soon lose business.

 

It’s super glamorous

Personally I blame 90’s comedy Absolutely Fabulous for this one.  Whilst I love the programme I can only wish that my career had been spent at parties, swigging Bollinger, jet-setting and looking glamorous.  The reality is much of it has been spent having early mornings, late nights, missing out on doing things because I am having to work at client events and spending lots of time in hotels alone.  Luckily I love the work but can promise you that if glamour and being able to enjoy long boozy lunches is what you’re looking for in a career,  PR isn’t for you.

My Business is doing well – I don’t need publicity

This is the one I understand least because Coca-cola, McDonalds, Apple,Virgin and numerous other companies are doing really well and I can guarantee they all have a strong PR team behind them all the time.

Saving PR for bad products or when business isn’t going well is not an ideal strategy.  In an ideal world PR should be a constant on-going resource that you are making use of, I don’t mean sending out a press release every week, I mean managing how the public perceive you on an on-going basis, helping you raise awareness and  assisting you in not only look after your current client base but helping you tap in to that audience that don’t yet even know they want what you’re offering.

We’ve had publicity for A,B,C we’ll be in touch when we do X,Y, Z

This is way too common.  Businesses launch a product or event and want help with the PR of it, they get in the news, get a following and then end all PR saying they have something else coming up in six months and will be in touch then.  In the meantime they may not be doing any PR, marketing or getting people talking about them, so in six months time when it’s time for the next big thing it’s like starting all over again.

Put simply your PR should be consistent and on-going not a hive of activity for short periods and then nothing.  People are saturated with information in the press, on social media etc so you need to be popping up all the time to stay at the forefront of their minds.

PR doesn’t work

Just because your business isn’t in the media every week doesn’t mean PR doesn’t work.  It’s not all about making headlines.  Similar to the previous topic PR is about being consistent it’s like any other area of your business there needs to be a strategy and on-going work to ensure you get the best PR for your business.

Or in some situations it has been in it may not be working as the company isn’t taking the advice of the PR person they have employed.  On more occasions than I care to remember I have advised people and then when the advice hasn’t been taken told it hasn’t worked.  If you’re going to employ a PR person remember you’re employing them for their expertise so make sure you use it.  You know your business and they know theirs.

 

If you’re an SME considering adding PR to your marketing mix take a minute to have a look at our website Beck and Call PR