Don’t Forget the Basics

by Julia Gaynor on September 1, 2010

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I had an interesting conversation with a someone today that reminded me of the importance of PR basics we were taught in PR 101. This person was explaining to me that while his company had been covered on multiple occasions by the Today Show, The New York Times and FOX News, among other national media outlets, that he wasn’t interested in that kind of coverage. I was quite surprised to hear that, to say the least. I can honestly say that was the first time in my career that anyone had said to me that they didn’t care to be on the Today Show!

When I probed him a bit about this, he explained that these pieces hadn’t really moved the needle on his business. Sometimes as PR professionals, we forget that while the Today Show or Wall Street Journal may  be the “holy grail” of coverage traditionally, these outlets may not be the best way to reach our clients’ target audience. May PR professionals operate in a vacuum, rarely considering the marketing, sales and business goals as part of their PR strategy. PR should be yet another tool for growing a business.

Just a reminder that we can always benefit from revisiting the basics.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Davina K. Brewer 09.02.10 at 11:16 am

So true, so true Julia. As you mentioned, two basics that need to be revisited in this scenario, plus one more FWIW:

1) The audience. the targeted media outlets were national and nice but if not on the radar of the customers, key publics it’s all for nothing.
2) The plan. The strategy to use these media exposures for more than just publicity, clips in a thud book. Bringing back to marketing, to sales… using them for the company’s business goals.
3) Feedback. The follow up, the research.. if the needle didn’t move at all? Or was there a pop in interest, but no sales? Were there website hits, more traffic those days.. but then customers couldn’t find what was discussed on air? Ask those questions so you can revisit the strategy, go back to the basics.

Chris Denny 09.18.10 at 3:40 am

Nicely said Davina, we publish/distribute PR from time to time that may only go to 15 or 20 HIGHLY TARGETED print and/or online media.

Sure, we often add the big name media to the distribution for targeted PR but that’s just so clients can brag about any coverage they might get.

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