As an up and coming business, you might have heard about public relations or PR campaigns but you are a bit in the dark on what they’re all about. To begin with, a PR campaign encompasses a set of planned time-sensitive activities undertaken by a business to achieve certain goals and objectives. If the PR campaign or strategy is effective, it benefits the business in many ways.
For instance, a successful PR strategy can help establish a strong brand identity while increasing the credibility of the company in the market. It helps attract customer loyalty while birthing new opportunities for your business. With a well-throughout plan, your strategy can help generate more sales and revenue for your business. These campaigns also help inform the public about your business while also attracting interest from potential investors. Nonetheless, a PR campaign works better with clear objectives, a plan, and the right strategies in place.
So, are you considering starting a public relations campaign for your company or small business? If so, you are looking at the right page. Here are some public relations tips on how to run an effective campaign.
- Understand What’s a PR Campaign?
- Have Clear Goals and Objectives
- Work With a Reputed PR Agency
- Know Your Target Audience
- Build Healthy Relationships with Journalists
- Brainstorm Ideas
- Choose the Appropriate Channels
- Write an Exceptional Press Release
- Time It Right
- Consider Using Influencers
1. Understand What’s a PR Campaign?
As hinted above, a PR campaign simply involves conducting various planned activities and a range of media forums and platforms with specific results in mind. The results are supposed to benefit your brand or business in terms of recognition, awareness, customer loyalty, revenue, investors, and so forth. During the campaign, various activities are conducted on media platforms like:
- The company website
- Social media
- TV and radio
- Print media
The most effective platform will largely depend on your target audience, the size of your company, and your budget, among other factors.
2. Have Clear Goals and Objectives
Knowing your end goal is among the most important steps in creating an effective PR campaign. Without a clear purpose in mind, the entire campaign could be a total failure; a waste of time and resources. With a clear goal and objectives in mind, it is easy to determine what you need to do and where. It also allows you to understand the potential limitations or challenges and how they can be mitigated for effectual results. This way, you can also forecast potential success more accurately and keep realistic expectations. Below are a few examples of objectives in a public relations campaign.
- To attract attention from the media
- To spread brand awareness
- To keep the public informed with up-to-date news about the company
- To establish and enhance brand reputation
- To attract media influencers and employees (top talent)
- To cultivate positive stakeholder relations
3. Work With a Reputed PR Agency
As your business grows, the list of operational and administrative tasks is expected to increase. This is why companies add or expand departments as they grow. For tasks such as marketing and PR, many businesses prefer outsourcing the services. It is often cheaper, plus it allows you and your employees to concentrate better on the immediate operational or administrative activities for efficiency and productivity.
Moreover, a good PR agency can act as an extension of your marketing department. An experienced PR agency is also well-connected from within the borders and internationally. With a London based PR agency with an international network, you can be sure that who you are and what you stand for is effectively communicated to the people that matter. This is done through traditional and digital media as well as social channels. Your story is told by professionals and spread beyond borders to generate real results and lasting change.
4. Know Your Target Audience
Just like with anything else related to branding and marketing, an effective PR campaign requires you to understand your target audience. Your goals should be aligned with their needs. Your strategies on how to reach them should also take demographics into consideration. In a nutshell, the entire approach should largely depend on who you want to reach.
Let’s say, for instance, you just launched a new line of diapers or baby products. If you plan on increasing awareness through a PR campaign, the last thing you want is to market these to single men as your primary audience. It pays to think far and wide about who your primary target audience will be when creating a PR strategy. It also helps you in deciding the best platforms to use for your PR campaign, and which ones to direct more resources to.
5. Build Healthy Relationships with Journalists
Unbeknownst to many businesses, having one or a few journalists in your corner can help your business in various ways. They come in handy when you need your PR content published on authority blogs, print copies, or covered in TV programs. While cold email pitches do bear positive results, having a good relationship with one or two well-connected journalists or bloggers in your niche can make your outreach work easier. Your business can benefit many times over in the future from this positive relationship.
6. Brainstorm Ideas
At this point, it is safe to assume that you already have clear goals and objectives alongside realistic expectations. Perhaps you even have a rough idea of ways to accomplish them. To solidify your strategy, consider conducting lengthy research, brainstorming ideas online and offline. research your audience as well as your competitors in the market.
Involve your employees, colleagues, and close individuals in a similar industry to yours if you must. While at it, don’t forget to cover some of the most important aspects from what we’ve discussed above, including:
- The message
- The audience/recipient
- The sharing channels/platforms
- The main topic and how to best get it across
You can even make use of surveys for an overview of how your audience may react to the message/topic. It is even better to involve an expert in the subject before you proceed.
7. Choose the Appropriate Channels
As we’ve mentioned severally, your PR campaign will only be as effective as the channels you choose to communicate from. Will a press release work or is a press conference more effective? Are you planning on involving social media influencers in spreading your message or is your official handle enough? At the end of the day, you want to pick the channel that will most likely get the message home to your target audience. This is all the more reason to be keen on tip number 4.
It is always best to consider mixing some offline and online tactics in your PR campaign. Both of them may influence customers before they go shopping or even while at the mall before they make their purchase decisions. After all, awareness is among the things that make a consumer choose an item over a similar one from another brand. For online PR campaigns, here are a few important things to bear in mind:
- Ensure your PR material is SEO-friendly
- Let your PR team work closely with your digital marketing team
- Don’t ignore the power of social media
8. Write an Exceptional Press Release
Press releases are incredibly important tools in any PR campaign; no wonder the two have similar acronyms. It is among the most effective tools used by established organizations (including NPOs and government agencies) in spreading awareness, providing updates, and communicating important information to the public.
For your PR campaign to be as effective as possible, your press release needs to be professional and less promotional. If it has a solid news angle, for instance, journalists will find it easier to work with and publish or feature. When writing a press release, the title needs to be attention-grabbing and written in a way that it tells a story. Most journalists prefer a well-formatted release with relevant information about the message, the company, and even quotes from industry leaders related to the message.
9. Time It Right
The success and effectiveness of your PR campaign will also depend on when you launch. During public holidays, weekends, and festive seasons like Christmas, for instance, it is often easier to get attention from more of your target audience.
Moreover, people tend to spend more money during holidays than during regular workdays. If the Easter holidays are just one or two months away, you might want to consider waiting a few weeks before dropping the bombshell or making a major announcement to drive sales.
10. Consider Using Influencers
Finally, social media influencers are an incredible asset you can use to maximize the effectiveness of your public relations campaign. Depending on whom you choose and the approach you use, your branding message or press release could reach millions of people in just a few minutes. Influencers could be popular media personalities, celebrities, comedians, motivational speakers, and pretty much anyone with a huge following that could relate to your brand.
When it comes to brand awareness, company reputation, and consumer loyalty, nothing beats an effective PR campaign. It can help drive sales and skyrocket your revenue while promising lasting results. The few tips above will hopefully inspire you to create an effective public relations campaign that will help your business or company soar higher.