Patrick Brightman - 07/18/2014
There’s no one step that leads to a successful PR campaign. Success comes as the result of a sequence of elements that, when put in action, drive PR, content marketing and social media in unison.
Getting started can be a daunting task, and there’s usually far more questions than answers. Companies reach out to dedicated PR firms partly because of the time requirements, but also due to the experience and expertise a PR team can offer. In return, it’s our job to become an offshoot of your team’s marketing department, and to quickly learn the answers to questions that can bog down a department.
Whether you are looking to reach a consumer or a B2B audience (or a mix of the two), here are five critical steps we can help you with to launch a strategic and effective PR campaign.
- Determine the competitive environment, and identify the strengths and weaknesses of your competition.
- Find marketplace perceptions, of you and of competitors.
- Learn what resonates with your target audiences, and what drives them to take action.
Develop Your USP (Unique Selling Proposition).
- Create a one sentence description of your product/service, or one takeaway the customer should remember about your brand. Learn to articulate the single basic benefit to be conveyed to the target audience in a clear and concise manner.
- Build a list of three strong key messages to communicate to the target audience. Repeat these key messages to yourself, as they’ll soon become the foundation for your talking points for interviews as well.
- Remember, the point here is to identify your key differentiating factors between you and your competition.
Define Your Milestones.
- Set clear, concise and agreed-upon goals. We’ll monitor and review these goals throughout the campaign to ensure effectiveness, or the need to edit the plan.
- Measure and communicate the results of the campaign. If it’s successful, shout it from the rooftops! If it isn’t, take a good, strong look at why and determine how to right the ship.
Cultivate Your Contacts.
- This is an ongoing process. Though you’ll be able to name the editors you have strong relationships with, it is recommended to keep a well detailed database of all editors you work with. This will make outreach far, far easier, and more efficient.
- Remember, content covers many, many platforms now. Chances are high that you won’t just be reaching out to editors in “traditional media” anymore. For example, there’s less value for a broadcast interview if your audience primarily relies on the internet for its news.
- Learn who your key influencers are across all information platforms, and monitor for when the conversation is ready for you to provide a unique or newsworthy contribution.
Clearly Define Your CTA.
- What action do you want your audience to take? When this has been determined, you can then create content to answer this question in a “non-salesy” manner.
- Tell them why, exactly, they need to take this action. Then, repeat this again. Spell it out in a way that your potential customer understands the benefit of working with or buying from you.
- Finally, confirm that when customers take the action you’re imploring them to take, the mechanism for sales or product/service education is of the highest quality. After making all this effort to drive customers somewhere, it should be worthwhile…or else you’ll be back at the beginning.
A New Jersey public relations and social media firm, 3E PR is built on the foundation that PR campaigns must entertain, educate and engage an audience.