Your brand’s public image is essential to making sales, finding new customers and making your company a success. As the name denotes, public relations is rooted in relationships. How you relate to customers, partners and stakeholders is key in a good PR strategy.
Here are seven tips on how you can improve your public relations plan and become more successful:
1. Make sure your goals are well defined
First and foremost, take a good, hard look at your goals. What do they really tell you? Your goals should be easy to understand, measurable and attainable. Writing goals isn’t just a practice. Write goals with intention. Ask questions like, “Who is my customer?”, “What message do I want that customer to respond to?”, and “How will I measure success?”.
2. Do your research
This goes hand-in-hand with goal-setting. The best public relations strategies are well researched. Use competitive insights and survey the industry before creating a plan. You don’t want to duplicate what another product is doing unintentionally. Keep up with media outlets that write about your brand and those of competitors. This will help you keep on top of how your brand and the industry as a whole is being presented to customers and stakeholders.
3. Utilize your website and blog
Make sure that your website is professional and quickly gives customers the information they need. This may seem obvious, but too often websites go without regular updates or don’t seem to serve their intended purpose. In addition, utilize an industry blog to raise brand awareness and your authority on your industry and products. When thinking about your website, it’s also important to think about network security. Simply put, you don’t want your product or pages to be victims of a cyberattack.
4. Engage on social media
Just like with your website, social media may seem obvious. Even though social media is all about brand awareness and building relationships with potential customers and industry partners, it is often overlooked. Do not make your social media strategy second to the rest of your public relations strategy. More and more, social media is how the world interacts with products. For this reason, you should also consider utilizing influencers. Customers are more likely to try a new product if they see them used by someone they are familiar with and like. It’s important to understand this and leverage it to your advantage.
5. Create better relationships
Whether you’re talking about customers or partners, public relations is all about relationships. This goes beyond customer service. Make sure you have contacts that you know well in key industry businesses. This is also important when considering your relationship with the press. Have contacts that will work with you and help you promote your business and product. Do this by adding value to the information that you’re giving them. For instance, share industry trends or tips that these partners will find important.
6. Promote at industry events
Industry events may seem more about learning something new or learning about industry trends from experts, but they have a place in your public relations strategy. They’re an important opportunity for your brand to be the ‘something new” that others are learning about at these events. Whether you set up a booth and share information about your product at events, or simply use the event as an opportunity to meet contacts and potential partners, these conferences shouldn’t be overlooked.
7. Think outside the box
Any good strategy thinks outside the box. Find unique ways to develop brand recognition. Consider putting your product on crowdfunding sites, not because you need investors, but because you’re trying to build awareness for your brand. Find partners that are willing to let you write guest columns for blogs or media sites on industry trends. This will give you a great opportunity to emphasize information about your business or product.
From goal setting to getting creative, there’s so much you can do to improve your public relations plan and ultimately better sell your product or brand.