Maximize Your Company’s Exposure With Public Relations

Don’t be afraid to admit it, but for many people PR means “press release.” However, what it really means is public relations (PR) which sometimes is a misunderstood marketing concept. PR activities differ based on the branding and image you want for your company. Large corporations usually employ public relations professionals and/or secure external PR firms. Small to mid-sized business might not be doing any public relations activities – but should they really go without?

It turns out developing a strong public relations strategy is a critical part of the marketing mix and can be essential to the success of many small to mid-sized businesses. There are The 3 P’s that I recommend:

1. Promote news via press releases and a proactive approach to the press
2. Participate in trade shows and conferences
3. Pursue editorial opportunities in relevant publications

Promote News for Maximum Exposure

Press releases based on relevant and timely news can gain your company valuable exposure on many web sites, social media, blogs, videos, and other areas. However, your news will yield hundreds of impressions with your target audience if executed with a press tour before the release date. And if you have already created key words linked to your web site (via search engine optimization SEO), you can quickly draw customers to your web site. Your press release, collateral, messaging and web site need to be consistent and have a call to action.

Participate in Conferences and Leverage your Personal Brand

Public relations professionals can also help research worthwhile speaking opportunities at conferences and trade shows relevant to your industry. As a speaker, you usually don’t pay other than personal expenses to speak or contribute to a panel. In addition, you can do personal and company branding while gaining access to prospects and partners. Plan to contact conference representatives about 6 months in advance of an event. This exposure also helps you gain personal branding by being viewed as an “industry expert”.

Pursue Editorial Opportunities and Become an Industry Pundit

Another activity a PR professional can pursue is finding relevant articles in the publications your customers and partners read. Usually you can find an editorial calendar on the publication’s web site and articles in which you might be able to contribute content. Your public relations representative can “pitch” the reporter and many times as a next step, get the reporter to agree to interview you (or one of your customers) while referencing you as a “source.” In some cases, the reporter might write an entire article dedicated to your company. Always position yourself and your key executives as “industry experts.”

Take the Next Step with Public Relations

These public relations activities – The 3 P’s – can propel your company to the next step and increase its exposure and revenue. External PR firms and your internal marketing resources can explore these activities. Although there are more than the three activities listed above, you can confidently say that you know that public relations is not just a “press release” – but an important vehicle in the marketing mix and a next step strategy which will give your company maximum exposure.