Tag Archive for: why do PR

What types of PR do you need, and when do you need then? The type of PR you choose, mostly has to do with your larger strategic initiatives and your desired PR outcomes. When hiring a top PR firm, prioritizing initiatives and timelines is usually incredibly important to companies in emerging industries or companies with big ambitions, but not huge PR budgets. So when SHOULD you use the most important types of PR for fast-growing and ambitious companies?

Strategic Public Relations

Research is the forgotten science behind PR. From surveys and studies that impact consumer or stakeholder opinion, to consumer, product, or media trends, strategic PR puts emotional intelligence in context.

Many startups skip this part because they perceive it as expensive. But that’s why Avaans Media offers a strategic analysis as part of its bespoke PR services. We think it’s important to inform strategies with data. Even startups without a reputational history can benefit from analysis of media trends. The strategic analysis can also save you hundreds of thousands of dollars in wasted advertising or brand expenses because of bad timing or a lack of insight into a buyer’s state of mind.

Media Relations

Media relations is the most visible part of PR.  It’s so visible in fact, that many people think media relations IS PR. It’s usually media relations that secure proactive press and work directly with the media to improve their impression of your company. Most ambitious companies use media relations when the goal is to increase visibility and improve their reputation for stakeholders. Stakeholders could be current or potential investors, current or potential customers or clients, government decision-makers, and even the media itself. A solid media relations strategy keeps you in good graces with the media and improves your reputation with positive press. Media relations can be product PR, like with a new product launch, or during a particular product sales cycle, or it can be part of the thought leadership and strategic relations campaigns.

Media relations PR tactics for fast-growing companies include active outreach to journalists and maintaining an eye on news that impacts the brand, its competitors, or its customers. Media relations PR professionals never forget the “relations” part of their job and ensure that content such as press releases, pitches, and products are delivered in a media-centric way. Your media relations team has two important stakeholders: the media and you, and it’s often a delicate balance.

Community Relations

For emerging industries like cannabis and drones, community relations is a primary PR tent pole. Community relations are the proactive steps a company or brand takes within a particular community to improve its reputation or ease concerns about its product or operations. Community relations can be within a geographic area, a demographic group, or an industry. Tactically, this might include partnering with nonprofits, purpose-driven initiatives, or education campaigns.

Crisis Communications

No one likes to think about it, but from product recalls to cyber attacks to executive missteps, having a solid plan in place for a crisis is an important part of building, and maintaining a hard-earned reputation. Tactically, this should be a plan that’s in place for a variety of crises that could impact your business. You will consider your risks, your stakeholders, and key people who need to be involved, and how they need to be involved. Crisis communications can be one of the most expensive forms of PR if you wait until there is a crisis to engage a PR agency.

Digital/Online Communications

Most modern PR firms, especially those that serve companies with ambitious goals,  will incorporate some level of digital PR in a comprehensive PR strategy. This could incorporate content, social media, and at the very least, how the latest Google changes impact your PR. You simply can’t ignore that your reputation lives and breathes online. Make sure your digital PR collaborates with your SEO and your social media.

 

Thought Leadership

From public speaking opportunities to content contributions to commenting on important news and leading important conversations, thought leadership for executives improves brand reputations and community relations. What would Apple be without Steve Jobs? What would Spanx be without Sara Blakely? Both CEOs built an incredible brand and added value to it with their own personal branding. Entrepreneurs of fast-growing or ambitious companies with their eye on an IPO or fundraising should invest in thought leadership because it’s one of the most valuable forms of PR.

For startups and ambitious companies, PR is an investment in your company’s future. Knowing when to use important types of PR for ambitious companies will help you prioritize your PR investment.

Investing in PR is a commitment, so before you get started, it’s important to be clear on the competitive advantages of PR. Clarity around these advantages can ultimately help you enhance your overall PR outcomes.

  1. Enhance Credibility

    A trusted brand will increase sales and revenue, but there’s an additional reason to use the competitive advantages of PR: the bank of trust and credibility. Building trust and credibility has it’s own brand value advantages, the third-party validation from credible media outlets positively affects capital raises, increased sales, and future IPOs. But there’s more, if you get caught up in bad news, have a product recall, or other upsetting news, the trust you’ve established with customers, investors, and journalists will serve you well as you respond to bad news. Depending on the news, PR could also save you legal fees, re-branding fees, or lost sales. Credibility and trust build up over time, and if given the opportunity, trust is a lot like reinvested dividends, they grow exponentially over the years, so it’s never too early to make deposits in the trust bank.

  2. Cost-Effective Marketing

    Paid ads require copywriters, videographers or photographers, a team of editors for content, and that’s before you ever purchase the space or pay the ad and marketing agency for their creative ideas and campaign planning. PR agencies specialize in creating opportunities that come at little to no cost, like creating buzz, word of mouth, or owned content. Product placements or executive quotes, interviews or public speaking opportunities, awards, these have little to no additional cost, and yet they lend 3x more credibility than an advertisement. So what’s the competitive advantage? Let your competitors spin their wheels on the ever-changing price of digital ads or the unknown impact of a print ad and instead invest in sticky earned media, with a predictable budget, that delivers awareness AND credibility.

  3. Increased Loyalty

    What would you pay to have 50% or more of your customers or clients be completely loyal to your brand, no matter how much your competition targets them? Competitive advantage PR campaigns that appeal directly to customer values or purpose have an enormous impact on customer loyalty and earned media. Purpose-driven programs also have the added competitive advantage of potentially appealing to a segment of journalists too. Well-considered PR campaigns will have the added competitive advantage of giving you more opportunities to communicate with your customers and give your employees more opportunities to humble-brag about the socially aware company they work for. And when the recruiting market is tight, giving your employees pride in their work saves on recruiting and turn-over costs.

  4. Playing with the Big Boys

    If you’re not already a household name, then one of the competitive advantages of PR is the statement that you’ve arrived. When media outlets start covering your products, you’ve entered into a rarified realm because less than 2% of all companies EVER receive media exposure, and we bestow those that do with more credibility. Simply appearing in an article with a household name elevates your company. At Avaans Media, our clients are hyper-growth companies or those in emerging industries, or developing purpose-driven campaigns – what all our clients have in common is when they come to us, they are in the mix, but not well known to key stakeholders, but when they leave us, they have measurable outcomes including capital investment, mergers and acquisitions, and IPOs.

  5. Leverage Your Other Initiatives

    One additional competitive advantage of PR is having them at the table when planning internal or external initiatives. PR experts can help you develop those plans with media reactions in mind. If you DON’T want press on something, PR experts will know how to enhance that outcome and will help you prepare if it hits the press. On the other hand, PR experts can advise how to leverage marketing initiatives for additional coverage. We’ve helped our clients identify many ways their investments in branding, partnerships, and even advertising can pay 3X more dividends through earned media.

 

PR is the choice of brands with big plans and that’s because the competitive advantages of PR can’t be beaten. Regardless of your strategic business goals, talk to the Avaans Media PR experts about them so we can advise you on the best ways to make those goals a reality faster.