Public Relations – or PR as it’s usually referred to – should be an essential element of your sales and marketing plan.
PR is about increasing your credibility, it’s the process of building a reputation and attracting the best staff. I use the present perfect progressive tense on purpose, building, increasing and attracting. This is because PR is an on-going process.
Why should you care?
PR should be an essential element of the sales and marketing plan of any successful business. An effective PR strategy can sell your products or services to people who might otherwise have gone elsewhere. Great PR gives your business standing and trust, if Good Food Magazine or The Times recommends your chutney range you can be certain that your sales will grow.
Public Relations works by details of your business being communicated through trusted intermediaries. Examples might be through communicating with the media, conversations with your customers, recommendations of suppliers and product reviews. It is important to invest your time and resources into building up your connections with your intermediaries, write genuinely interesting newsworthy press releases, ask customers for feedback and testimonies, make sure your offering is as good as it can be. Be present at local events, support charities, and invite intermediaries to share your story and your business ethos.
Why advertising doesn’t work
The usual alternative to generating PR is buying advertising space. Advertising is expensive, and it is static and for consumers who won’t be bought it is taken with a pinch of salt. The word of the company declaring its range to be great is exposure, whereas a trusted journalist or writer that has reviewed a tried and tested product is reliable testimony: it is considered to be several times more influencing to purchasing behaviour.
Regardless of your PR objectives, a consistent and considered approach will certainly help your business to become a leader in its field.