Getting the PR year off to a great start


As the dust settles after the office party and personnel come back to the workplace fresh and raring to go from their much deserved break, the arrival of the new year presents a plethora of options for evolving your company’s PR strategy. While most new year’s resolutions involve quitting smoking or losing a few inches off the waistline after over indulging on the mince pies, a new PR initiative not only has the ability to improve the outward perception of a company, it can be a great way to foster team spirit and get everyone pulling together to achieve a common goal. Here are some options to consider when overhauling your PR strategy for 2015.

Tangible goals
While improving your brand awareness is a common goal, it’s important to determine specific criteria in regards to how this goal is measured. It’s best to define success in crystal clear terms so that everyone is on the same page. For instance, if you want to attain more coverage in the local news, define the media outlets in which you would like to feature your stories, prioritise them and establish a timetable of stories.

Determining the effectiveness of different mediums
PR is a tool that can help your company to grow by building its reputation and increasing its profile and credibility.  It’s easy to chalk up any coverage as beneficial, but it will serve you better to define how PR campaigns are helping to drive revenue.  For example, if your company released a new product and you gained coverage in the local media, that’s great, but is that spreading the word far enough afield? New products are non-specific to geographic regions and coverage should be national or even global. This means thinking broadly about media targets – creating PR via digital channels may be more beneficial as you can target audiences all over the country or world.

Obvious areas for improvement
While revisiting your PR strategy, think about elements that may have fallen by the wayside.  One of the danger areas is blogging and social media – some companies go down this path without understanding the time commitment required to integrate these into their PR and to implement them well.  Failing to blog and use social media regularly and professionally can be detrimental in the long run.  A blog which hasn’t been updated for months or an inactive Twitter account creates the impression that your company is not on top of its communications – hardly a good impression for potential clients or business partners.

Testimonials are also important for attracting in new clients, so make sure the last testimonial from a credible client wasn’t from 2010.  Testimonials provide social proof for potential clients looking to solicit your services; strong testimonials from companies they respect or other satisfied customers could help prospects make up their mind about contacting you.

Public speaking is another under-utilised PR tool. This requires careful planning, to ensure that you are sharing your knowledge and expertise with the right audiences – don’t wait to be asked to speak, you can put company representatives forward to present at conferences alongside other respected speakers.  Speaking at relevant high quality events creates the opportunity to meet new people and network with attendees.  After the event, you can share your presentation online and via social media, taking your wisdom further afield.

Don’t be afraid to make a radical change
If your PR strategy was ineffective in 2014, don’t be afraid to admit it. Only by admitting failures are you able to gain the perspective needed to move past them and forge a more prosperous future. Do you feel that your company needs to improve its PR strategy in order to move forward? It might be time to get some advice. We are well equipped to deal with a wide range of PR challenges from crisis communications planning to underwhelming media coverage. Don’t hesitate to get in contact if you feel your PR strategy needs a turbo charge!

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