What’s Your PR IQ? Part 2

When it comes to marketing, this is one of the most confusing times for business owners professionals and entrepreneurs. Marketing is changing. What works for one business, could be a waste of time and money for another. Still, many still believe they intuitively know the ins and outs of launching and implementing an effective PR campaign. Sadly that is seldom the case. In part one of “What’s Your PR IQ?” I discussed defining your business, defining your target market, thinking in terms of stories and writing a press release, but there’s much more to consider before launching and implementing an effective public relations campaign.

Study the various media outlets. You don’t have the same conversation with every person you know, so why would you send every media outlet the exact same release? Each media outlet has different story needs and a different audience. Tailor your releases and your pitches to each specific media outlet.

Less is more. If you’re thinking of sending out a huge press kit filled with reams of paper, photos and brochures, think again. This may work when pitching clients, but remember the media is interested in only one thing – a good story. Burden them with pounds of useless information and they’ll see you as a nuisance.

Examine all of the available angles. Your first pitch may not work. Be creative. Keep at it. Eventually you’ll hit on the right one. Media outlets vary. Each magazine, newspaper and TV program has different needs and demographics. Each time you’re preparing to pitch a story, put yourself in the place of that editor or segment producer.

Work backward. Approach it from the media’s perspective, and you will be much more creative, and more effective. What would make a disinterested party want to catch a segment or read an article about you or your business? Once you hit on the “hook,” you have a story.

Learn how to meld a traditional PR campaign with blogging and social media. Don’t think in terms of doing online marketing or traditional PR. The two go hand in hand. Facebook and Twitter explode whenever a story breaks on TV. The mainstream media gives the story credence and validation and then the bloggers and social media sites pass the information along, or discuss it, agree, disagree, analyze, etc. That is why getting a story into the press via traditional PR is so important.

Be patient, be persistent and prepare for success. This is the toughest concept to master. Some campaigns hit a home run in the first week, but most take time and persistence. But the wait and the work are worth it. An effective campaign can grow your business, increase your cash flow, build your brand and establish you as the expert in your field.