Making PR pay – six of the best ways
6 October 2014, Blog
PR has always had a fluffy image but applied in the right way can have an extremely positive impact on your organisation’s performance.
So how do you ensure that your PR campaign will support your strategic goals:
1. Ask why you want to do PR? at the outset. This shouldn’t be an exercise in self glorification but one which is linked to your business plans. Nor should it focus on communications activities, for example increasing media coverage, or likes and comments on social media channels.
Instead drill down to business led objectives such as attracting funding, acquiring high quality staff, managing a reputational risk, disrupting a traditional business market or supporting lead generation. In this way you’ll get so much more PR bang for your buck!
2. Understand who your target audience are and what they want to hear. Shape your communications messaging through your own experience of what resonates with your key stakeholders, supplemented by what they tell you. Don’t go for a one size fits all approach to message development. Develop tailored communications specific to each stakeholder group.
Remember the pain of those that you wish to do business with can be your gain if you can help them in any way. So when developing your communications look at the big picture and understand the risks and challenges they are facing up to.
3. Set business metrics against each of your communications objectives so that you can measure the effectiveness of your campaign. But to do this effectively you need to set up internal processes to capture evidence of meeting the metrics put in place. Also remember to regularly review and adapt the programme to ensure you remain on course to hit your target outcomes.
4. Don’t think of PR as just media relations. There are a plethora of communications channels to use to reach out to your target audiences that all need careful consideration. Communications channels have become increasingly fragmented with the rise of social media.
Challenge your current communications methods and simply ask those you wish to reach out to about their communications preferences.
5. Look at what your competitors are doing and how they are positioning their organisations in the marketplace. Try to differentiate yourself and stand out from the crowd. Indeed the way you communicate can become your major differentiator.
6. Don’t do PR in isolation – integrate with other marketing communications activities so that one plays off the other and maximises your visibility and opportunities for interaction with those that matter most for your organisation.
By Chris Lawrance, Managing Director at JBP