Not all PR is created equal.
Unfortunately for many businesses, they may not realize the difference between good and bad PR; they will simply fork over a check after hearing a promise that their PR company will extend their outreach to new customers. But businesses owe it to themselves and their new and existing customers to publish good PR. Below are a few ways for both businesses and PR companies to achieve good PR.
- Tell it how it is. As a PR company, don’t sugarcoat anything when you’re trying to tell your client what’s best for their PR. You’ve entered into a business relationship, and any company should be proud to hear the truth — even if it hurts — if that means more customers in the door in the long run. Let clients know that if good PR content is written for them and displayed to the public, the client best be able to perform services or have products that live up to all the good hype.
- This isn’t a one-and-done deal. Good PR is all about the long-lasting relationship between client and PR company, and that is fostered by producing a steady stream of news content. Many businesses believe that they just need to announce a grand opening, or their big annual sale, then go quiet until the same event rolls around next year. Make sure that your business is constantly telling the media and masses about new products, services, contests, etc. to strengthen the communication with customers.
- Make lemonade. PR done correctly will often welcome critics from the media or even their customers with a respectful eye. After all, how does one improve a business if they filter out all the negative noise? That trick may work for awhile, but pretty soon you’ll start to see numbers fall. Be sure to include your customers, not exploit them (trust me, they know the difference). Post information that gets conversation started — and don’t be afraid to get involved in the discussion either!
- Explore new ideas. Companies will often say “I don’t have anything to share with the public this month.” This is like saying one doesn’t feel like opening their store’s doors today — even though people are lining up down the sidewalk to get in. There will always be something industry-related to discuss. Whether it be current events or gearing up for a sale that might not be until next month. As long as you have an idea, good PR will most certainly go a long way to reach potential customers. Don’t hold back.
- PR is quantitative. Any good PR will always be measurable. Whether you base this on callbacks after publishing a press release, or on the number of social media followers you receive after pushing a story through the media. Whatever your method of measurement, make sure it is consistent and you and your PR company set boundaries and variables so that you are able to track long-term progress.
- Friends in high places. Having pre-existing relationships with people either in your industry or in the media is always a good thing to have. New to the industry or just starting your business? No worries. Good PR companies should be able to seek out the connections you need in order to reach out to your audience. Make sure these relationships are built on trust and reliability, because those contacts will be able to vouch for you as soon as you start pushing out good PR for the masses.
- Keep it old school. A business can do anything in their power to make sure their story reaches the most people. However, if the content isn’t good or the story is spread too thin, there will be no easy way to get new customers no matter how many friends in high places one may have. Good PR is a story well-told and told to the right people.
Good PR will take some work. It is the job of both the business in question and their PR company to produce the best possible news content in order to reach new and existing clients.