I truly heart PR as it’s a creative and inexpensive way to tell your company’s story gaining valuable exposure and the 3rd party credibility associated with a trusted brand. It’s a way to compete and win target audience attention without spending millions on marketing like the big brands do.

Social media is fantastic as well because it accomplishes the same thing with increasing exposure and credibility, albeit online. Right now, we will look at traditional media relations focused on building awareness and changing public opinion for a company and its products or services.

What is your story?

What is special and unique about your business? What does it offer to the community? What is newsworthy about your company and its products and services?  

Do you have a product/service that is new and improved or doesn’t exist until now? Affecting change/evolving an industry?

As an example:

Our client Wales McLelland Construction designed a new technology application that is evolving the nature of reporting and communications in the construction industry. The story appealed to a local news outlet called Business In Vancouver with an audience of approximately 10,000 business leaders and decision makers across the lower mainland. The publication wrote a story on Wales McLelland which was featured in their Top 100 Private Companies in BC. This sort of media coverage is highly valuable and so much better than advertising as readers know the company didn’t “pay to play”, so to speak.

Who is your audience? Answering the “What’s In It For Me” question.

Who are you talking to as a customer persona? What do they want and need? What information do you have that can help, inform or entertain them?

Remember that a reporter and editor are the conduit to whichever media audience you want reading about you or seeing you on the evening news.

Think about how you will help the media do their job. What is the story that will appeal to the audience they writing for or broadcasting to? You are the expert on a particular topic or subject matter offering an audience opinion, knowledge, interesting event or a laugh (entertainment).

Is your product a new technology? If so, you would contact a reporter who covers this “beat” or market like Gillian Shaw at the Vancouver Sun for example.

Always think of how you can deliver valuable information or an interesting story to the audience and make it compelling enough for the reporter or editor to cover it.

Remember…it’s all about them, not you. When you are pitching the media, always personalize your email or phone call to them. Research their stories so you can match the tone of yours to what they like to cover and remember to be a helpful resource to them. They get pitched hundreds of times a week so you need to build a relationships and give the a reason to write about you and your business or product/service.

Find The Emotion

People like to connect to the product or service. What’s yours? Does it help someone? Is it good for the environment? Is there a charitable component? Be honest in what you are saying, but create a need that only you can fill.

Deadlines & Response Times

Reporters and editors live by deadlines.Make sure you respond to them immediately when you have their interest and get them the information they need to do a story on you. They could choose to cover thousands of other businesses so if they choose you, it’s pretty special and you need to act right away.

Find out the cut-off dates or times for an outlet to receive your information.

Make sure you can articulate the story well in writing, and if you can’t hire a good writer than can.

For a Crowdfunding PR Campaign, a few key things are necessary.

  • Know the audience you want to attract, appeal to their emotions, which gets backed up with logic.
  • Professionally produced video telling your companies story, make sure its engaging and has facts to back up any claims.
  • Testimonials from happy customers are helpful to.
  • Keep it under 2 minutes long as that is about the maximum attention span for most people today.
  • Have compelling rewards that make people what to be a part of your crowdfunding project, whether a piece of the action or something that will make them feel good about contributing.
  • Target reporters and editors that would cover your industry, keep your emailed pitch short and concise, personalize it to the reporter or editor’s taste in story-telling. Follow up with them on the phone. Get them the info they need right away if they are interested.