PR is a two-way conversation involving a series of carefully orchestrated tactics that enable an organization to present its image to the public via people with influence over the public.
The "influencers" include a variety of potential targets, such as reporters, editors, bloggers, and other individuals who are in a position to help you tell your story to an active audience of listeners, readers, or viewers.
As a business owner, your job is to build your brand and grow your customer base. PR is a great tool to help you achieve these goals. If you can engage an influencer -- we’ll imagine an old-fashioned reporter in this case -- in a conversation and convince him to mention you or “cover” your news – you will win legitimizing exposure that you can leverage to energize your marketing efforts and stimulate word-of-mouth communications about your business.
The reporter’s objective, meanwhile, is to tell an honest story about something newsworthy happening in the world. The reporter’s goals are to engage an audience and drive market share. Just like you, news organizations have business goals to achieve. The reporter’s job is delicate and challenging, and he simply isn’t interested in receiving anything that isn’t news.
Organizations are famous for spamming reporters without taking the time to determine whether a story is newsworthy and for failing to do the research to make sure they’re contacting the right reporter at the right time with the right information. As a result, reporters are so inundated that even the best stories struggle to get through.
Social media, meanwhile, has opened up new paths to news with friends, fans, followers, and other connections working hard to curate stories for their audience.
PR is indeed a wonderful tool. You can use it to sway opinions, build legitimacy, energize sales, and stimulate word-of-mouth communications about your business. But it doesn’t happen overnight.
You need a strategy.
This series of blog posts will give you an introduction to PR along with some of the tools, tips, and tactics you need to create a strategic PR plan to supercharge your business.