I’ve met so many small business folk lately who profess a desire to wage content PR campaigns, then continue to invoke a long list of lame excuses not to, even though in their heart of hearts they know they need to work to build their businesses. Anyway, here’s a list of popular excuses…
1. No Time: “I’m too busy” … right, better to wait until you have the time—meaning you have no work.
2. I have nothing to say: OK, you’ve been running a successful business for some time and you have learned … nothing? Start by considering your prospects’ / clients’ pain points and write about how you helped solve their problems.
3. I can’t measure ROI for PR: Depends how you measure. If you expect a published column to produce “x” new business calls the day of publication, OK. But dig a little deeper and you will find considerable impact from SEO to your LinkedIn profile-ranking lift.
4. PR doesn’t sell: Well, PR tells what you do best and if you cannot harness that content to your sales efforts, find another gig.
5. I can’t write: B—S–! You’ve been writing your entire career, from proposals to reports, memos, cases, etc. You can write, just sit down at your desk, close your office door and hit those keys. You will quickly have a first draft.
6. I’ve got no database: Once you’ve been published you need to push that content out to your prospects, clients, etc. If you do not have a new business database, you aren’t even trying to market your wares. Dude, start by reviewing your Xmas card list and then buy some bulk email software (only $49).
7. Everything I do is proprietary: My client will fire me if I reveal details. Of course Disney, Pepsi, etc. won’t let you go public with your contributions to their success, but you can discuss, without naming names, the lessons learned that will be of interest to potential clients.
8. Everyone already knows me: Lucky you, Mr. or Ms. Popular! Just what do they know about you, unless you are already a published author and keynoter. Think about your clients, not your ego, and share your knowledge.
9. Nothing I do is newsworthy: Hello Mr. Boring. Surely you are doing something if you run a profitable business. Dig a little deeper and you will see there’s lots of issues to turn into content.
10. I can’t afford it: Finally, the real reason—you’re too cheap to invest in building your business. I won’t argue with that excuse. Just keep on keeping on, while your competitors grow right past you.
Sure, mounting a successful content marketing campaign to drive your business forward requires investments of your time and treasure. But to turn one’s back on the power of PR is foolish. However, be very careful when selecting a PR firm. Perhaps I’ll explore that issue next time …