It would be easy to paint a perfectly rosy picture. How’s this: all my clients get outstanding media coverage, appearances on the first page of Google, and more phone calls than they can handle. Bumps in the road? Who needs them! The question is, should you believe me?
Instead, I’d like you to learn from my real journeys with clients who want to get noticed. Try some of these solutions yourself, or give me a call for an honest conversation about maximizing your marketing efforts.
Challenge 1: “That’s Not A News Story”
Companies and organizations get really excited about their new product launches, fundraisers, and other happenings in their community. The trouble is, journalists often don’t get nearly as excited. Here are some reasons why:
- They’ve seen the same story so many times before.
- There’s nothing new or different.
- It’s old news and past deadline.
- It reads like a sales letter.
- It’s unclear or boring.
As a public relations professional, it’s my job to predict the journalists’ reactions beforehand: “It’s not a news story.”
Solution: New Story, New Angle, New Audience
Both nonprofits and business owners have lots of untold stories. Public relations is about uncovering stories and adapting to a reporter’s needs. Ideally, we can even uncover details and new angles on the tired old story.
Lots of stories also don’t need a journalist to spread. People overlook other opportunities, like blogs and podcasts. In any case, someone somewhere is waiting to hear your message. Sometimes, the part of your story that calls to them isn’t the part you would want or expect. I encourage all my clients to be open to new possibilities.
Challenge 2: Growing Audience, Growing Blog
We all wish we could just find our people right away on a tight budget. In truth, your blog readership grows with your fanbase of happy customers, employees, networking colleagues, email list subscribers, and others who know, like, and trust you. In turn, your satisfied readers will share your posts and help grow your fanbase over time. What happens then, if you have a small audience?
Solution: Using Team Effort To Build Your Audience
A team effort is the quickest way to build your audience. Ideally, your social media platforms, blog, website, TV/radio appearances, and others work together to tell your story. As a copywriter, I find that my written words reach more people when we have a web designer, SEO specialist, and graphic designer on the team. To maximize every marketing dollar, the company also motivates employees, clients, and salespeople alike to keep spreading the word.
Regardless of your budget size, keep in mind that buzz-worthy stories and marketing messages are often the ones that people most relate to. A customer might say, “Oh yeah, I couldn’t agree more!” and share some juicy bit of content with their friends.
Other widely shared content tends to be:
Challenge 3: Only You Can Define Your Brand
Writers and PR professionals can advise you on your messaging. I have lots of branding advice for clients who ask for it. At the same time, it’s your call how you want people to know and remember your business or agency. If company leaders each have their own ideas about the business’s image, it will take longer for me to reconcile the many points of view. A project with many decision-makers will often require more revision to consider everyone’s perspective.
Solution: Organize the Chaos
Some companies have internal meetings to work through their ideas before they bring me on board. That way, I have a primary contact person who only shares the final decisions with me. Others prefer to include me in these discussions, bringing their key personnel together in the meetings.
Depending on company size, you may find that certain people need to meet together, while others can answer questions in writing or meet with you separately. If you’re not sure whose input you need, ask yourself these questions:
- Who at the company sets the tone or company culture?
- Who tends to be the idea people?
- Who best understands marketing and sales concepts?
- Who will revise written drafts?
- Are there other people whose job roles are lesser known or understood?
Free Webinar: Hone Your Message, Get Noticed Now
My upcoming will help you:
- Transform “me” messaging into customer-centered copy
- Understand what makes a story newsworthy
- Pitch a journalist
- Brainstorm blog ideas
to take your marketing to the next level.