In order to succeed in the PR world you have to be a “people person.” It’s as simple as that. As a public relations professional, you are constantly speaking to and stalking journalists, editors, event coordinators, etc. Don’t be afraid to stalk the media; they are used to it, trust me. Your main objective is to sell your brand and/or client as much as possible.
Webster defines Public Relations as, “the business of inducing the public to have understanding for and goodwill toward a person, firm, or institution.” But how is this actually applied to the real world, you ask? Well, PR professionals do this through obtaining media opportunities, identifying prestigious speaking and award engagements, and creative thinking.
Here are some handy tips to achieve success in PR:
Tip #1: Research, Research, Research and more Research
Before reaching out to anyone, make sure you do thorough research. There is nothing more annoying to a reporter than PR contacts pitching them on subjects that are not in their area of interest. If you can’t find a reporter’s bio in their publication, go through their social media channels.
Chances are they have their area of expertise listed somewhere on LinkedIn or Twitter. When you do your homework it shows in your pitches and reporters are more inclined to respond back. More than 60% of writers agreed that great subject lines are tailored to a writer’s beat.
One important thing to note–for your email to get opened, it needs to have a hook or no one will ever read your pitch and you won’t be featured.
Tip #2: Proactively seek award and speaking opportunities
Who wouldn’t want to be in the spotlight? A crucial role of a public relations professional is identifying speaking and award opportunities for your brand and/or client. You really want to present them in the best light. What better way to do that then helping them bring home some awards? Don’t be afraid to shoot for the stars!
You should submit high-reach nominations as well as low-reach. When writing the nominations, make sure you are abiding by the guidelines and providing as much detail as possible. Getting in is more than half the battle, but that doesn’t mean a PR pro’s job is done once the client gets accepted.
You need to make sure the executive has the public speaking skills and confidence to speak articulately in front of large audiences. Award and speaking opportunities are a great way to build brand awareness. The more you get, the more your credibility goes up.
Tip #3: Stay up to date with current events and trends
Gotta stay relevant!
When you are conversing with the media, it’s important to present yourself ahead of the game. You essentially are competing against other companies when representing your client. Why should a publication choose you over another reputable company? Creativity is a key component here!
To achieve this, PR pros need to come up with compelling news angles in which your client will be positioned as a strong thought leader. If some breaking news comes out and your client can provide valued commentary, act on that ASAP. If you need more tips on keeping up with all the current events in this world, I love turning to this blog post: 11 Ways to Get Smarter & Stay Current in a World of Social Information Overload.
Public Relations is all about being quick on your feet and being able to multi-task efficiently to get the job done right.
Do you have any additional PR tips that worked best for you? We would love to hear what strategies worked most effectively in your situation. Feel free to share in the comments below.
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