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How to get more reach from PR

When you run a business, especially a start-up or small-scale operation, you need to take advantage of all the exposure you can get.

A PR campaign is a great way to leverage your resources to gain new customers and to increase your revenue. Because PR helps to bring up your revenue, it’s a cost effective way to market your business. The key to a successful campaign is to make sure it is thoroughly researched and planned before implementing it.

Define key messages

Launching a new business, or maybe just a new branch of a current business, is an important time to draw in new customers. Define the key messages for your campaign that encompasses your businesses core values and have a ‘go to’ person for media to act as a spokesperson for your business.

Useful PR is all about creating a steady stream of communication between your business and your customer base.

Be creative

PR campaigns are the norm these days. Everyone starting up a business is going to have launch events, press releases, and even social media campaigns.

To set your business apart from the rest and to get noticed, you need to think creatively. Find ways to go beyond the usual and try something different.

For instance, a PR firm recently helped an airline get attention for a new route by draping famous statues around London in towels with the airline name and logo. It got attention and proved cost effective.

Target the right audience

Before launching any campaign, careful research is necessary to building a strategy. Understanding your audience is key to getting the right messages across.

Research your target audience to find out who they are, what they want from your business, and how and where to reach them. For example, if you expect to target a young crowd, make sure that you include social media in your campaign, if you are looking for the baby boomer audience you might consider local radio or newspapers.

Write thoughtful press releases

Press releases are so important and you have only one chance to make a good first impression. These tell the story of your new business and any aspect of your start-up which you choose to share with your customers.

Taking the time to write press releases that will successfully send your message out to your audience is well worth it. If you lack the ability to write well, consider hiring a professional for this task. The investment in a professional writer will pay you back many times over. A bad press release can do damage, while a well-written one can be invaluable.

Utilise the digital PR world

Websites that post press releases, such as PRWeb, are a great resource for companies that want to reach the masses. You can create a press release here, distribute it around the web, and even track its progress and exposure.

There are still more traditional ways of distributing your message, but these can be time-consuming and limited when it comes to reaching your audience.

Digital PR offers a wider audience for a very cost effective amount and if your PR item is interesting enough you will find that you story will get covered by niche & industry blogs and local media.

Build relationships

Finally, one of the most important goals of your next PR campaign should be to develop lasting relationships with your industry networks. You can do this by making your plan a long-term one and introducing yourself to key media and industry experts.

Keep the flow of news frequent and the lines of communication open. When possible, make your relationships with customers personal with phone calls and emails directly from you, the business owner.

A PR campaign may seem daunting if you have never embarked on one, but the effort and money you put into it will be paid back in spades. With creativity, a good strategy with well-crafted press releases, and a targeted effort, you will see the benefits of your campaign in no time at all.

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Greg Butler

Greg Butler

Greg Butler is a Communications Advisor with <a href="http://www.aami.com.au/business-insurance">Commercial Insurance at Suncorp</a>. He has a long history in the advertising industry, heading the creative departments of local and international agencies, including Clemenger, AdPartners and Leo Burnett. He is <a href="http://www.gio.com.au/business-insurance">experienced in insurance</a> and financial services having worked on accounts including AMP, Standard &amp; Chartered Bank, AGC/Westpac and Sun Alliance.

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