Proactive Media Relations Will Increase Your Brand Visibility

Companies should welcome and encourage attention from the media. If you aren’t getting press coverage, you should be taking steps to increase your company’s brand visibility.

The process begins with establishing and maintaining good relations with reporters, editors and broadcasters – on and offline. Good media relations are not one-shot events. They are relationships that you carefully build and maintain over time.

Media relations can help your company gain marketplace attention, providing clarity and credibility to help move your customers and prospects to buy your products and services; news stories will reinforce a positive brand image of your company.

The goal of a media relations program is to build business in your markets by creating an image of your company as the best provider of your type of products and services.

Your company can generate a considerable amount of good will, customer loyalty and new business by a proactive, continuing media relations program. To achieve this, you should actively seek media coverage on an ongoing basis, and not wait for reporters to call your business. Under a proactive media relations program, you will initiate contacts with the media on a regular basis.

Media Relations Requires Commitment From Top Management

A proactive program requires the commitment and involvement of top management; they need to be available to the media and cooperate with your public relations (PR) staff or an outside agency in seeking out media opportunities.

A successful media relations program includes routine announcements of personnel changes and promotions, calling attention to community projects, and promoting operations and activities unique to your company. It also requires positioning your company’s top managers as thought leaders in the community and your industry by offering comments and reactions to events that affect your industry and company.

A proactive program will build lasting relationships with reporters and editors, so that they will get in touch with your company when preparing stories and needing an expert opinion.

The key to becoming a reporter’s source of news is to follow these four simple rules. Know

  • The publication, radio station or broadcast network that you are sending information to.
  • The reporter who would be the most interested in receiving your information.
  • When to call the reporter.
  • How to pitch a good story.

Developing a solid and effective media relations plan requires

  • Researching past and current media coverage and public opinion of your company. You need to evaluate the overall market and factors that affect your organization.
  • Identifying and developing your goals and objectives for your communication efforts.
  • Determining your intended audience and what you want them to know.
  • Developing your message before contacting a member of the media. Make sure your message is easily understood, pertinent and motivating.
  • Knowing the right media source before you need them; this will allow you to reach your target audience.
  • Keeping the press informed of what is happening at your company and supplying information that allows them to write newsworthy content.

Media Relations is a Year-round Responsibility

Good media relations take place year-round with you exchanging and providing relevant and newsworthy information about your company to the media.

You need to measure the results of your communications to determine its effectiveness and any needed improvements. Over time, media coverage and placements will build and create awareness of your company and have a positive effect helping to generate sales.

Developing and carrying out an effective media relations publicity program takes a lot of work, and requires constant attention, measurement and evaluation. Yet, it’s well worth it!

PR Boosts the Effectiveness of Your Marketing

Public relations (PR) helps reinforce your marketing, advertising and brand position. It makes your marketing work better, especially if you have unique key message content that can be a starting point to use for different mediums on and off line.

It can’t guarantee 100-percent control over content, display, position and frequency, as does advertising. But what it lacks in frequency, PR can make up for in reach. And, it’s a great way to spread your marketing and advertising budget.

PR can deliver your company’s product or service messages through a variety of media that could never be included in the most lavish advertising plan.

Sound PR is an integral part of maintaining a successful business. Competition for customers is keen. Having a successful business depends on properly building a solid foundation through effective public relations, marketing and advertising that supports your brand.

The public (your customers) can be cynical. They have lots of advertising messages thrown at them on a daily basis. But, when people read articles, hear or see something about your company, they’re going to take the published reports more seriously than they do ads. Articles written about your company, executives, products or services give you enormous credibility. It’s good content that’s not coming from you.

Media relations should always be a key part of your PR plan. Successful media relations – nurtured over time through relationships with media contacts – can help establish an ongoing, positive awareness of your company and the products or services it provides. It can inform and excite customers, investors and employees.

Third-party endorsement by the media sells integrity, quality and extraordinary service like no advertisement can. PR has the power to persuade the public.

Not promoting your company through public relations can take quite a toll on your company. It can mean lost revenue. Your company competes with thousands of others. The main difference for sustainable awareness is whether your PR program is established by default, or as a result of careful planning.

Well-organized, ongoing public relations programs make a big difference for building the awareness of your company and what it sells. The payoff for doing strategically planned, proactive public relations can be tremendous.

Businesses Need to Embrace Social Media

Most businesses now realize the potential of social media and its compelling way it reaches customers. Social media is an equalizer of influence. It’s not about the technology, but people being engaged. Customers are more influential as part of the social media arena. Social media has created an involved, connected and more perceptive customer audience.

Businesses must embrace this opportunity and the relationships they’re shaping with their customers. By adopting a new perspective, a meaningful engagement strategy for building customer relationships, businesses can take advantage of the growing opportunities via social media networks.

There is no doubt about it. Customer influence is growing! Businesses that embrace customer engagement to form and guide experiences, and to innovate products and services will gain significant brand and competitive advantages.