Posts Tagged ‘public relations’

Cliffs Notes on Unleveling the Playing Field for More Coverage

Thursday, May 19th, 2016

i-unlevel playing fieldA client expecting his first child lamented he wished there were Cliffs Notes for all the baby books stacked on his nightstand.  It got me thinking — I feel the same way about the amazing marketing webinars, blogs, podcasts, white papers and newsletters out there.  So many great resources and so little time to review them! I decided I’d start producing my own version of Cliff Notes on some outstanding content.  I promise to condense it down to under a five minute read, pulling out the golden nuggets so you don’t have to.

Below, find a condensed version of Cision’s 71 ways to unlevel the playing field and secure more coverage.

Connect with journalists on social

Invest in future

Connect with journalists on LinkedIn with a personal message and like their posts with a genuine and valuable comment.

Follow media on Twitter and Facebook

Share links to reporters stories

Act now

Track journalist hashtags like #journchat  and #URGHARO

Tweet facts, statistics and quotes from your story

Keep track of trending Twitter topics and pounce if appropriate.

 Produce interesting content

Invest in future

Blog often

Guest blog

Publish white papers and ebooks

Email newsletters

Act now

Offer exclusives

Conduct surveys or opinion polls

Provide video or infographics

Use company analytics to determine which topics need to be promoted

Network and showcase at events

Invest in future

Exhibit and connect with reporters at tradeshows

Speak at events

Act now

Hold a conference and promote panelists with video meet and greets

Give back to the community in a genuine way

Remember traditional pitching tactics (this is PR 101 for the seasoned PR pro but helpful if you’re new to PR)

Invest for future

Use a media database

Search editorial calendars

Subscribe to HARO (Help a Reporter Out)

Take an editor out for coffee and listen don’t pitch

Act now

Pitch by email and phone but be concise and compelling and honor an editor’s request for no contact at all or via one method

Newsjack: Tie your story, if relevant, to a current event

Write a timely press release: It must answer the question “Why Now?”

Promote your coverage via social media

Highlight your brand

Invest in the future

Apply for awards

Set up a digital newsroom

Showcase your company’s work-life culture

Act now

Offer demos of products or services before they go public

Consider giveaways in return for coverage

Announce anniversaries if you can also manage a news hook

If you can check off the suggestions above, you’ll be in good shape, but for the complete list, see Cision’s tipsheet.

 

Learn the rules so you know how to break them — Dalai Lama

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

Learn the rules so you know how to break them.

This is one of Dalai Lama’s 18 Rules and so apropos for PR.

  1. tacobell image1. The rule: Tell the truth and tell it fast.  This is a golden rule for crisis communications and one I highly recommend to clients.  But sometimes it’s fun, and effective to lie. For example, when Taco Bell was trying to gain inroads in Philadelphia, they issued a press release stating they had purchased the Liberty Bell and were renaming it the Taco Liberty Bell. On a smaller scale, last April Fools, gearjunkie came out with an announcement that Vibram FiveFingers now had a cycling shoe. For a flash second I thought I had been left in the dark, then I looked at the calendar.  In both cases  UVs went sky high.
  2. The rule: Avoid head to head competition.  Well this is more the client’s rule.  From a pr standpoint, rarely are companies willing to instigate their own comparative review initiatives for legal and any many other reasons. But a direct battle can be a crowd pleaser. Case in point, in Asia, Burger King was getting creamed by MacDonald’s.  In response, they put BK tee-shirts on Ronald MacDonald statues and plastered footsteps leading from MacDonald’s to BK, along with other subversive techniques.   The ploy sent BK burger sales soaring.
  3. Rule 3: Avoid illegal activities when planning events. OK, you don’t want to get your client, or yourself thrown in jail but if you can pull it off without prison time, the fine might be worth the publicity payoff. In the UK, two streakers painted with a cell phone company‘s graphics ran onto the soccer stadium field.  The stadium was named for a competing company. The stunt was picked up by the major broadcast company filming the event and got lots of print play as well.

I’m not saying you have to strip down or put out bogus press releases to get attention but I do think you have to be extremely resourceful in this business to succeed. Whether it’s a small budget, tight deadline or stiff competition, sometimes the situation calls for a creative, alternative solution.   Don’t have enough money to fly the media in for an event? Then catch them at a tradeshow – you have a captive audience.  Don’t have time or luck getting through to Newsweek then try their daily blog, The Daily Beast.  Can’t compete with the heavy hitters when it comes to entertaining than go the other way and do something so simple that’s it’s different and a welcome change. Can’t come up with the change to hire a driver for a NYC media tour? Take cabs and wear your running shoes.

Check out http://www.rasmussen.edu/degrees/business/blog/guerrilla-marketing-campaigns/ for more guerrilla marketing inspiration and, sorry for the cliché, but keep thinking out of the box.

 

Should you shell out more for a social media release over the wire?

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

We recently made a recommendation to our client to consider a social media release format for putting our new product news over the wire.  He asked, “Is it worth the extra money? “ Good question,” I thought and decided to do more digging. 

I came across a brilliant article (see bottom for the link) that suggested otherwise.  The net net was that SMPRs are expensive and they don’t drive people to your site, especially since the readers can get all the meat by viewing the wire release (i.e. pictures, videos, call-out quotes, all the bells and whistles a social media release offer).

The solution offered and one I suggested sheepishly to my client after the fact was to do a bare bones text-only traditional release under the 400 word minimum so as not to incur the hefty charges for extra word count. Then drive them to you site with a website address link (included for free by the wire service) where your visitors can see an expanded, fancier version of the release — basically an SMPR but on your site . You can even do hyperlinks to each product order page so it’s really a one stop shopping release. 

Our client was also in the process of building a new site so all the social media hyperlinks we would have paid extra for would not have worked a few weeks later anyways.  Another reason for us to keep it simple and cheap!!

Today, more than ever, we need to be questioning expenditures we make on behalf of our client.  This approach is always a win win.

http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/4234/Why-Using-the-Social-Media-News-Release-is-a-Big-Mistake.aspx