Summit Group Partners Blog

Building Blocks of PR

A successful strategic or business plan has many features from growth initiatives, expansion strategies and an operational plan supporting the revenue plans.

 

One critical aspect that many companies fail to plan for is public relations (PR). For those going through a business transformation this should be an even higher priority.

 

Becoming a valued media expert and obtaining the 'all- too-important' third-party credibility endorsement from the media can be invaluable to driving awareness and building equity in your brand or company. Public relations can also have a brilliant effect on the bottom line from a sales or financial performance perspective. Keep in mind, the more your clients and customers see you, the more likely they are to buy, invest in or retain you.

 

So what's in your PR toolkit? Here are a few ideas.

 

Media Relations - Never underestimate the power of building relationships and targeted (not self-serving) communication efforts. Whether you use an agency, your favorite PR pro or a do-it-yourself model, identifying and keeping up with media contacts in your industry is a must.

 

Press Releases - Never out of style, but always newsworthy and timely, press releases provide an opportunity to disseminate important information about your company, product or service to select media outlets or via newswire distribution.

 

Pitches - Distributing a 'one-size-fits-all' press release is not enough these days (was it ever?) With more and more companies and individuals vying for media attention, your press release must be accompanied by a sharply targeted and well-written pitch, which tells each media contact why it's relevant to their beat, and most importantly, their audience.

 

Social Media - A growing piece of the PR toolkit that allows you to directly and authentically engage with and influence import audiences. From videos and blogging to interactive sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and Twitter, decide what's right (or not) for you and your business, devise a plan and stick with it.

 

Events - Hosting events for customers, the public or the media can be an important way to establish or maintain relationships - providing an opportunity to entertain, educate or interact with a select group.

 

Exert Writing / Speaking - Showcase your expertise by researching and developing topics for articles or speaking engagements at conferences or local events.

Establishing yourself as an industry expert can go a long way toward building credibility with your target market. Some other tips in developing your PR plan:
• Be timely to what’s happening in the markets today and tomorrow
• Be relevant to your customers
• Be focused on the industries, technology and/or the services that you know best
• Provide value – educate or help customers solve a problem
• Be innovative – bring something new to the audience that they may not have seen or heard before

About the author

Aimee Miller
Aimee Miller - Communications and Growth Leadership Advisor

Aimee provides strategic marketing and public relations services to clients in a variety of industries including real estate, retail, design and construction, financial services and technology. For more than 15 years, she has put her marketing and communications skills to work to promote clients’ businesses. Prior to embarking on a consulting career, Aimee held the position of Marketing Director for a Denver-based professional services firm and was an Account Supervisor at the Integer Group managing promotional programs for Coors Brewing Worldwide. She has executed public relations and event marketing campaigns at other large advertising and promotional agencies, including Frankel in Chicago, for brands such as McDonald’s, Oldsmobile and Marshall Field’s.

Her PR background has delivered major media coverage for clients across a variety print, broadcast and online media outlets. She has a bachelor’s degree in both Journalism & Mass Communications and Sociology from the University of Iowa.
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