What is more believable, an article or an advertisement? Michael Levine, well known Hollywood publicist and author of the bestselling book Guerilla P.R. describes the value of public relations this way. “Depending upon how you measure and monitor, an article is between 10 times and 100 times more valuable than an advertisement.”
Today we’re going to be talking with another public relations expert about how to unlock that value in an ever changing world of ways to communicate.
WHAT YOU’LL LEARN FROM RICK MILLER, CEO OF RICK MILLER COMMUNICATIONS
WHAT OPPORTUNITIES DOES SMALL BUSINESS HAVE FOR GENERATING PRESS? (1:18 in)
In Rick’s words – Find out where customers and prospects get their information. The opportunity to tell your story in an earned media way or to have a story written about you is actually shrinking.
Tip – Do some homework to identify where people you want to reach hang out. Identify which communication channels are most effective for you to generate your own press.
WHAT’S THOUGHT LEADERSHIP? (3:15 in)
In Rick’s words – A thought leader can clearly espouse a point of view about a product category, a trend, a legislative or legal issue and share it with others.
Tip – Determine whether there could be value in becoming an expert or authority upon your industry or a niche sector of the industry. In a highly competitive business, the ability to make yourself into a thought leader separates you from your competitors and is likely to attract more customers.
HOW IMPORTANT IS EXECUTIVE BRANDING? (5:05 in)
In Rick’s words – It sets a tone for the organization. There’s a symbiotic relationship between strong executive leadership and communication externally and internally.
Tip – Effort to brand yourself reinforces the company brand. Studies have shown how doing this well improves internal recruiting, teamwork and employee retention.
IS BAD PRESS BETTER THAN NO PRESS AT ALL? (7:33 in)
In Rick’s words – There are two schools of thought. Any press is good press or you want to avoid bad press.
Tip – While a single bad response is not likely to hurt you, remember that with the internet, there is a permanent record that won’t go away. Be transparent and correct misinformation.
WHAT METHODS CAN COMPANIES USE TO GET NEWS OUT ABOUT THEMSELVES? (12:04 in)
In Rick’s words – You have to take the news into your own hands. Find the tools you can manage well, stay on top of and use every day to ensure you’re getting the maximum return.
Tip – Don’t undervalue email. It is still a preferred message delivery method with informative information, not sales pitches. Facebook is a prime example.
HAS THE PRESS RELEASE OUTLIVED ITS USEFULLNESS? (14:25 in)
In Rick’s words – Yes and no. In the past it used to be the only way to share news and information about what you were doing to the news media. Today it can become an SMS feed or something where people sign up to get information about your organization.
Tip – Press releases placed on your website let people know what is going on in your company and may improve your visibility in Google search.
HOW SHOULD YOU MEASURE THE VALUE OF PUBLIC RELATIONS? (16:16 in)
In Rick’s words – There is not a direct cause and effect to what you are doing. Track the kind of feedback you get from friends, family, colleagues.
Tip – Put a link in your press release, Facebook or Twitter post for example that tracks back to your website. Measure entrance to the website from those sources.
HOW SHOULD YOU EVALUATE A PUBLIC RELATIONS AGENCY? (18:25 in)
In Rick’s words – Do they have the ability to provide counsel and strategy. Do they understand media, messaging and have a strong understanding of social media.
Tip – Know what you want to accomplish and establish your goals. This will make it easier for you to evaluate a public relations agency.