As a business owner, you need to know how to take advantage of public relations (PR) opportunities and create new ones for yourself because, between continuously changing market trends and cultural influences, it’s not easy to stay ahead of competitors. Well-crafted PR plans can help you keep your market share and even gain more.
Successful PR campaigns help businesses achieve sales goals faster, promote positive business activities, reach target audiences with well-crafted messaging, and build better overall corporate image. PR opportunities can be born out of positive shifts but also out of a crisis. Entrepreneurs must always be on the lookout for ways to authentically and responsibly promote their businesses. Read on for a few tips for success.
There are many PR opportunities for business owners, whether running a small start-up or leading a team of thousands. Following are some opportunities that business owners often miss out on but should consider pursuing in the future.
Don’t believe the misconceptions—national-level PR is not the only way to achieve favorable results! Small business owners, new business leaders, and those leading community-focused organizations should consider kicking off their PR strategies on a small, hyper-local scale.
Many PR strategies can be applied to community-focused PR. Press releases, media alerts, press briefings, interviews, and even events can achieve maximal impact when kept in the neighborhood. Podcasts are also a great, mostly untapped opportunity for those who enjoy public speaking and improvisational conversation. You’ll maximize your ability to reach audiences that care. This type of strategy will also bolster your organization’s relationships and build community goodwill.
Another added benefit of hyper-local PR is the symbiotic relationship between PR specialists and the news outlets that cover the region. Smaller publications are more likely to be looking for newsworthy stories, so journalists and reporters may be more amenable to less flashy stories or specifically-requested angles. There may also be added opportunities for collaboration down the line.
Finally, achieving PR success on a small scale paves the way for regional and national success. Take a cue from globalcompanies’ PR strategies, then scale them down to work for your business. Press releasesare formal statements shared by organizations to announce major business news including new hires, product launches, mergers, and the like. They are a quick, cheap, and effective way to disseminate important information to stakeholders. But PR professionalscan do so much more with their releases.
PR professionals can play with language in their press releases to capture the attention of media personnel. They can add puns to press release titles or small Easter eggs that pop up throughout the release. They can also get creative when using embargos or release dates to build buzz around announcements and potentially create more PR opportunities in the future.
The key to press release success is ditching the idea that they are all dry, boring, and overdone. Find small, subtle ways to make your press release stand out through language, form, and targeting.
Honesty and authenticity from brands can be refreshing. Every PR campaign has an agenda, but companies that are willing to laugh at their own mistakes, own up to them, and speak to consumers like equals will stand out from the crowd.
Straightforward and clear information presented in a concise manner can do wonders for a brand. People want to humanize brands and get to know the individuals behind the curtain. Consider pitching leadership for interview opportunities, speaker panels, and other in-person events. Rather than overpreparing, allow them to speak authentically about the company’s products and services.
A similar strategy can be used in written PR communications. Tone down formal business language and speak to consumers conversationally. Make jokes on your social media channels and post relatable memes. These are simple ways to better connect with both consumers and media, ultimately leading to more PR opportunities.
Some business owners consider PR an “extra” and not a necessity for success. A common misconception is that if a brand is good enough, it doesn’t need PR to boost sales. But a comprehensive PR strategy is not only about making money; it also builds community, media connections, lays the groundwork to grapple with future crises, and proactively promotes new products and services. PR is essential for businesses at every stage.
Success in PR can be difficult to track, but that doesn’t mean PR strategies aren’t working. A comprehensive PR strategy spanning across platforms and disciplines bolsters other business functions in less trackable ways, from the sales team to customer support. PR touches nearly every business function and helps each to run more smoothly.
Be open to every opportunity that comes your way—don’t rule anything out just because it’s out of the box or small-scale. At the same time, work to create opportunities for yourself through proactive networking, relationship building, and media pitching. Business owners should certainly consider hiring a full-time PR employee or PR firmto help manage these opportunities and keep things moving behind the scenes at all times. To be highly successful in the field, you must plan ahead so you are resilient to market swings and can make both high and low points work for your organization.