In the PR industry, ensuring your clients stay above the noise doesn’t mean your outreach strategy has to undergo a major overhaul every few months. What you do need to do however, is keep your outreach fresh by effectively incorporating traditional PR with non-traditional messaging strategies.
While none of the following tactics/ideas are particularly revolutionary or profound, when wisely integrated into standard PR practices such as press release distribution and reporter calls – they combine to elevate a relatively static campaign into a dynamic, effective one:
Proactive Social Media. Don’t assume your target audience is going to see the great coverage you just got, make sure to use all of today’s great social media tools to push that content. Today’s news is bite-sized and needs to be pushed accordingly. When you launch a new product or provide thought leadership comments on a key industry topic, distribute it among all your social media outlets. This positions you as a key resource for news and insight, but only if you keep it conversational. Don’t just use social media to spam your audience, take the time to engage in conversation and provide insight that goes beyond just your products and services. People will take you more seriously and in turn, will push your content to their followers as well.
Awards. When dealing with awards, people often fall into a checklist mentality – often times just cutting and pasting pre-written boilerplate or, worse, someone’s LinkedIn profile. Don’t just take the easy route, take the opportunity to tell a story about your company’s ability to innovate and make tremendous impact upon customers. By crafting award nominations as a compelling, results-driven narrative, instead of a laundry list of accomplishments, you are giving judges something different and interesting to read – and standing out is what you want.
Thought Leadership. Positioning your executives as experts able to speak on trends and not just their products and/or solutions, elevates their profile as respected thought leaders within their industry. And as a result, it advances their careers, and elevates their company’s brand awareness/reputation. When there is a new product/solution to promote, take the messaging beyond simply “vendor promotional speak.” Think of taking a contrarian view to the current conventional thinking. More often than not, editors at publications are more likely to include an executive in a story if the comments go against the grain, as opposed to echoing the standard boilerplate from all the other “so called” industry pundits.
Data and Insight. A highly effective way to ensure your company is covered in the news is to make the news yourself. One way to do this is through surveys. Pinpoint a relevant, compelling industry topic that relates to your product/solution and conduct a scientifically valid survey around it. Make sure there are a couple “grabber” questions – the kind that media members latch upon because they make for a traffic-generating headline. Another way is sharing client feedback and anecdotes that put into context a specific industry challenge or trend. You can do this without revealing specific customer data, but you need to have compelling data that you can point to and back up your claims.
Repurpose. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time you produce something for promotion or distribution. Always look to take existing content and repurpose it into another format. In many cases, you can recast a press release as a case study, blog or podcast. You can transform a series of blogs and trade-press byliners into a white paper. And you can break out a white paper’s sections into stand-alone pieces to come up with a blog series. As indicated, none of these practices represents the stuff of rocket science. Each one is a tool which you can use throughout the year to distinguish your key messages. At LaunchTech Communications, we pride ourselves on keeping our clients public relations campaigns fresh and exciting. If you are looking to spruce up your outreach program and would like to hear how we can help, we would love to hear from you.