Are public relations part of your current strategy? If not, now might be the perfect time to kickstart PR for your business!
Times might be strange right now, but that doesn’t mean you should let your PR fall by the wayside. Keeping your brand as front-of-mind as possible is the best way to avoid being forgotten as the country finds its feet again- and it’s not difficult to start! From making connections with the press to crafting the perfect print for a PR package, there’s so much you can do to make sure the right people know all about what you do.
PR Dispatch have helped hundreds of brands create strong relations with the press and we’ve recently had the pleasure of teaming up with them! Read on to find out about their top tips to create a strong PR strategy.
Why do we need PR?
While it hasn’t been business as usual for a while now, the recent and current uncertainties have meant that the press is shining the spotlight on smaller businesses more than ever before.
The same goes for consumers. A changing world means a changing mindset for many of us (including what we purchase), and if you’re an indie business or a brand now might be the ideal opportunity to get your name out there.
But why is it so crucial and what are the long-term benefits of having your business featured in the press? Here we walk you through 10 key reasons as to why PR shouldn’t be an overlooked part of your business.
1. Drives awareness
Social media might be changing the face of PR, however, PR still matters in an ever-evolving digital world.
A number of magazines have been hit hard in recent years as a result of the digitalisation of the media, however, many long-standing (and new) publications have loyal and growing readerships that are keen to discover great and interesting businesses to follow and shop from. Most traditional outlets also have digital counterparts meaning that readers that don’t necessarily buy print can read it digitally.
PR plays an important role in increasing your brand awareness and being featured in the press continuously means that you’ll always be at the forefront of potential customer’s minds.
2. Reaches a wider (and your target) audience
Press visibility means that new audiences will be familiar with your business and what you do. You’ll be able to capture and attract potential new customers, and even if they don’t head to your website or purchase something from you straight away, they might do so in the future. Or if not right for themselves, they’re likely to spread the word about your business to someone they know.
Once you start achieving press coverage you’ll also be able to collect data about the people who visit your website as a result of a piece of press. You might think you know exactly who your core customer is, but this valuable data might tell you otherwise. So the press doesn’t only allow you to reach a wider audience, it also enables you to test and identify your core customers.
3. Supports your marketing
PR and marketing work differently, but share the same goal, hence why the two need to go hand in hand. If you’ve got a solid marketing strategy in place that’s great, however, if you’re not doing your PR alongside it, then you’re not maximising it. And vice versa.
Let’s say you’ve had a piece of coverage. This is a great achievement, but by communicating your win through your Instagram or newsletter, for example, more people will be aware of your press feature which will help build trust and credibility.
By integrating and aligning the two you’ll be able to see greater consistency and visibility.
4. Boosts your credibility
Trust is key in gaining loyal customers and having the press feature and talk about your brand have the potential to increase your credibility.
When a journalist or an editor is writing about your business, it is written by a third party. By having that publications’ ‘seal of approval’ you’ll automatically appear more desirable and viable. The readers know that it’s an organic and earned feature.
Customers are getting savvier and they don’t choose to buy from a brand on a whim anymore. They’re asking more questions and they want to know more about your brand, your processes, and your products before considering a purchase. So if you can showcase a number of press features then that’s a crucial step in demonstrating that you’re competent and trustworthy.
A few publications (online primarily) have a dedicated section of review-based features such as IndyBest and ES Best. This includes an editor requesting a sample of your product which is tried and tested and then written about. With 90% of customers reading online reviews before visiting a business, these types of features, alongside your customer reviews, can really help to give you a boost.
5. Improves your SEO
Being featured in an article online (or in a print article that has been pulled online) means that the article will stay there forever. So when potential customers type in your brand name your press mentions will appear and they’ll be able to click through and read about you. Editors sometimes update older articles with a fresh angle or content, and a feature that you were included in a while ago could still drive through traffic years later. That’s the beauty of digital press.
6. One step ahead of your competitors
PR is not about driving sales, it’s about generating continuous, long-term awareness, and being seen. And it can help secure your business longevity. A business that has been going for years, might not be doing much when it comes to PR so if you’re proactive with yours, you’re already one step ahead.
7. The press wants to hear from you
We completely understand that the press landscape can seem intimidating and that the thought of pitching your own brand might feel daunting. However, editors are dependent on you to produce content and are always on the lookout for interesting brands and products to feature. You’re simply doing the editors a favour by getting in touch with the press.
8. Small business, big press presence
The press doesn’t always favour the big players, in fact, they love hearing from great indie brands and businesses. If anything, being a small business can be an advantage, and especially right now. 2020 has been a rocky year in the world of business and the media understands that it’s more important than ever to champion smaller brands across their content.
9. Cuts your costs
As with anything else you outsource, PR can sometimes end up being a costly affair. However, by taking control of your own PR you’ll be able to save a lot of pennies that you can potentially invest in other areas of your business.
10. The power of Christmas press
We know it’s odd mentioning the C-word in the middle of June, however, many publications will start compiling their gift guides from July and onwards which is why the festive season starts a little earlier in the world of press.
This is one of the biggest times of the year for product-based businesses and the Christmas gift guides are a key opportunity not to be missed. In fact, it should ideally be a key part of your PR focus from now and until December.
Create the perfect press pack
From Business Cards to make a strong first impression, to professionally printed Leaflets & Flyers to quickly advertise all the main features of your business, we have a range of print to help you create the perfect pack for the press. Make sure to check out out our previous collab with PR Dispatch to find out what else you might need!
PR Dispatch is a PR membership platform dedicated to the success of product-based businesses by giving them the contacts, tools, and confidence to DIY their own PR and achieve great results from £53 per month.
PR Dispatch set a strong focus on their community, so aside from making PR more affordable and accessible, they want to make it less daunting by educating brands and providing support, guidance, and valuable advice every step of the way.
If you would like to know more about becoming a member or how PR Dispatch works you can book a platform tour here.