8 common mistakes PR managers make—and how to avoid them

by | Nov 24, 2021 | Public Relations

Companies today have many events and announcements that they want shared with the world. You, as a member of the public relations, or PR, department, have the task of sharing this news with the media. However, there are a few habits that you should avoid if you hope to have your message received then broadcasted for others to hear. The following are a few common mistakes that PR managers make—and how you can avoid them:

Construct pitches that are easily ignored

When you write your copy to send to the media, be sure to compose text that is engaging and gets the recipient excited to share your information. These publications and media outlets receive hundreds of these documents every day. Make yours stand out to them so that they relay it on to their audience. If you are writing about court reporters Sacramento, give it the dramatic feel of being in a courtroom to catch their attention. If this is an area that you struggle with, consider taking a writing class or two to strengthen your skills.

Send every news item given to you

Your company will want to announce every event and important breakthrough that is happening within the organization. This can amount to a great deal of information, much of which the media will ignore when you send it. Before you write a release, think about who will be interested in what you have to say. If the material is noteworthy and something that the public should be aware of, take your time to construct something and get it to your sources. However, if the announcement is meant more for your customer base or employees, consider putting together an internal memo or posting it on your corporate social media pages.

Forget to follow up

With the volume of releases that media outlets get each day, your copy can get lost in the shuffle. Along with writing engaging content, you must follow up after a day or two to ensure that has been seen. Set a reminder on your device or record it on a calendar with who you should speak to and what day the document was sent. When you reach out to them, ask if they have any questions or if they want you to put them in touch with someone in your company. Learn about what is happening in the business so that you can answer their basic queries yourself and be ready to give a quote on the subject when necessary.

Send a document full of errors

Individuals in the media and at publications that you work with will avoid your press releases if the content is full of errors or difficult to read. Before you send your copy out to them, reread it to yourself and proof it for errors. You can also ask someone in your department to review it as well. Make the changes that you or they have found then look at it again. Your text should be smooth as you go over it and your words must be spelled correctly. Once everyone is confident in it, pass it on to the media.

Try to hide the truth

Negative events can happen to all companies. When this happens within your facility, be sure to tell what happened to the public even if it might shine your business in a less than positive light. Your corporation can heal from what has occurred, but its long-term reputation can be damaged if you lie to the press. These outlets will also be skeptical of you if you are caught subverting the truth. You should also be willing to give consistent updates of the situation until the matter is resolved. It will put everyone’s mind at ease if you are honest and transparent during a difficult crisis.

Post information to one platform

There are more ways to reach the public than through the media. When you send out a release, consider adding the same information to your website, blog, and social media. You can reach a larger audience using these tools than you will with the press, especially if they miss it or decide to set it aside. Schedule the posts to coincide with the date on the document and be sure to set them to launch at the same time. Be sure to follow up on any replies that are left and engage with those who reach out to you about the subject.

Miss the right target market

Before you send a release for your company, be sure that those who will receive the news are the people that you want to reach. You may want to connect with as many people as possible. However, if the message falls on individuals who have little interest in the subject matter, then your project will be unsuccessful. Conduct market research to determine which demographics will respond to what you are saying and react to it. Find out the best method to speak to them then follow through with that plan.

Lack of perseverance

It can be frustrating to send out releases and have them turned down. However, to achieve the success that you want, you need to keep trying to get your message across. Develop relationships with people in the media so that you can feel comfortable when you talk to them. Learn to be confident concerning the subject matter that you are working with. This allows you to write clearly about it as well as speak on it.

Ask for help from those in your industry and from individuals within your organization then use what you have learned to write better copy that engages who receives it. It is your task as a member of the public relations department to get your company’s message out in front of the public. If you follow up on the releases that you send, proofread your copy for errors and content, and announce your news to many different platforms, you can ensure that the media will let the public know what you are trying to tell them.

Brett Clawson
Brett is a 43-year-old father of 2 boys with a degree in Business Management. In his free time, he enjoys learning about emerging business trends and writing about how to incorporate them into new and existing businesses.