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Everything You Need to Know Before Getting Started With PR
Want to know how to get started with PR from an expert? In this episode of Enlightened Entrepreneur Podcast, former journalist turned PR expert reveals the basic do’s and don’ts of Public Relations. Alison considers herself as an excellent storyteller who specializes in media training and crisis communication.
KEY QUESTIONS ASKED:
- Who is Alison?
- What criteria does she use to identify the people to work with?
- How does Alison market her business in such a noisy environment?
- What are the misconceptions around PR?
- What issues with crisis plan do business owners need to know about?
- What are some of the biggest mistakes Alison sees when it comes to PR?
- If somebody is looking to get started with PR, what necessary skills or the very first thing they need to do?
- Why is it so important to get started small?
- What is the perfect mindset a business owner should have about PR?
- For business owners who are looking to employ the service of a PR agency, what criteria should they use in identifying who to go with?
- What are Alison’s thoughts about giving to the community?
HIGHLIGHTS OF LESSONS LEARNED:
Criteria for People to Work With
- Find somebody that you can relate to that you admire
- If you can help somebody avoid doing the mistakes you’ve committed and give them some guidance, it will make you feel good knowing you’re helping someone.
Marketing Business in Today’s World
- Alison never advertise and rarely go to networking events.
- What she does is she writes a lot of content, video blogs and speak in a lot of conferences.
- Alison provides as much value and information to people looking for help in PR by putting articles out, doing video blogs and putting it out on Linkedin and other social media such as Facebook.
- By putting information out, people see her as an expert. Providing value is an effective way to get business.
- A lot of times people say any press is good press. Yes you want press, but you never want negative press. It’s really hard to control the message the media will send out.
- Another misconception is that people think that a public relations expert can control what the media says. When PR experts work with reporters, they can’t give them questions, they can’t tell them how to write the story. What they could do is guide the reporters in the way they want the story to come out.
- Everybody should have a crisis plan, especially now with social media, if you have a negative review, you need to know how to respond to it: what to do and what not to do.
- If you have a crisis plan in the beginning of your business, you won’t be reacting but you are in control of the whole thing and your team will know exactly what needs to happen
Biggest PR Mistakes
- One of the things is that a lot of business owners don’t understand is the timeliness of the media.
- A lot of times, it’s not all about them it’s not all about the company they’re just going to be a part of a story and so while the media may be here for 20 minutes they may only use 10 seconds of your interview, and that’s okay whats more important isthat you are a part of the story. When you establish yourself as an expert the media will call you time and time again about the industry. The media really wants to tel a story they don’t want to advertise you and talk all about you.
Starting Out With PR
- Start small and start establishing relationships with local journalists. Follow them on social media, start sharing their stories and content and email them. Start forming relationships with the local press and follow news trends in your industry.
- Start small, start paying attention to things that are going on in your industry, establish relationship with the local media and do some research about how to pitch yourself to the media.
Getting Started Small
- When you start small, you also get experience working with the media. There are times when someone who works with a small tv station can all of a sudden have international attention because their story gets shared on social media.
- Social media takes on a life of its own if it’s a good enough story.
Harnessing the Power of PR
- After getting initial exposure, make sure that you share out the coverage. Use all your social media platforms to share out that news story but make sure when you’re sharing it, you’re tagging the reporter, the news outlet, the editor, if there’s a videographer, tag everyone and put it out on every social media platform you have.
- When somebody takes the time to write nice handcrafted thank you note to the reporter saying thank you so much for doing the story, that goes a long way.
- The next thing to do is to work on harnessing the relationship with the media, because once they interview you and you do a good job and you share it out in social media, if they have an opportunity to do another story with you they’re going to call you because they know that you made yourself available and you had a good interview. You’re a perfect interview for these journalists because you make their job a lot easier.
More on PR
- We spend so much time paying attention to our clients and our customers that we sometimes tend to forget about trying to get our brand out through the media.
- The more you’re in the media, the more positive exposure you get, the more reliable and credible you appear. So when you have clients who are potentially looking into hiring and working with you, it’s perception versus reality.
- There are lots of opportunities out there for online publications that are looking for experts in your industry.
Perfect Mindset for PR
- Even if you’re working with an agency, success with PR takes a lot of time. Don’t expect that it’s going to happen overnight.
- You never can guarantee media coverage, and so be wary of people over promising things because you can never predict what’s gonna happen in the news.
Criteria for Choosing a PR Partner
- You have to see if you have a connection with them because you’re public relations team is really your right hand team.
- You have to be able to just be comfortable with them, that you have that connection.
On Giving Back to the Community
- If you don’t have a lot of money, especially when starting up think about how you can help with your services, how you can use your services to help them raise money.
- There are so many things that we can do as business owners that can make an impact. Find something that’s really important to you and take time to give back because we owe that to our community.