PR: How Do We Make it Work?
Are you looking to raise the profile of your business, charity or event? If so, you might be considering PR to make some noise in the press, media and online.
But how will this work in practice? You may be clear on what you want from your PR, but what will your PR want from you?
In this blog, I’m going to set the stage for working with Grainger PR (I don’t pretend or seek to be the same as every other PR consultant).
First off, Public Relations is about relationships – identifying your audiences, building and maintaining connections with those who might write about you and position you in front of the right people. The outcome? – they’ll talk positively about you, share your stories, achievements and opinions, driving sales, applications, footfall, sign-ups …. whatever it is you’re looking to build.
But before we dive into these relationships, let’s talk about the most important one – you and me 😊
Tell me about you
Before you even think about contracting me, I need you to commit to communication. I’ll ask you to go back to basics so I can really understand your business, objectives and audiences. Why did it begin? Where is it going?
That will allow me to shape a PR Proposal including costings. If you like what you read, you will sign T&Cs and we’ll get going.
Next, I’ll ask to spend a day (sometimes two) getting to know the ins and outs of your business and meet your key people. If you have physical premises, I’ll want to take the tour. If you have a business plan (let’s hope so), I’ll ask to see it. If you have a Marketing plan, even more so.
We’ll then discuss a timeline of activity based on your priorities for, say, the next quarter and beyond.
Generating press and media coverage is my core business and this is how I go about doing it.
First off, we would discuss ‘the story’. Perhaps it relates to an event you’re running, a campaign, new product or a significant grant or award. We would talk this through, draft the words and discuss the audiences and distribution. You might be after seeking an in-depth national spread, to be positioned in the business, construction or dental press or require more localised, community-based coverage. With an unrivalled network of contacts, I’ll make sure we’re pushing your message in the right places.
I’ll always be honest – if I don’t think your story will achieve what you’d like it to, I’ll say – and we can explore other options.
What’s more, a picture paints a thousand words so I’ll organise photography or videos to bring the story to life, or perhaps we’ll hold a photocall and invite the press and media along. I’ll work with you on identifying the best date, time and place, ensuring you’re equipped to deal with any interviews too.
I’ll also provide you with high-quality copies of all coverage achieved, whether it’s online links, PDFs or video clips. We’ll analyse what works, what didn’t and what you want more of.
Keeping up the momentum
With all my ongoing, retained clients, I offer a monthly catch-up. Whether at your place of work, in a café or virtually, that regular check-in is crucial, allowing us to reflect on past activity and plan what’s next.
You might think an email might do but, from past experience, missing this step out is a mistake. By all means, I’m accustomed to reacting with short notice, especially with crisis communications work, but telling me you’re launching a new product or hosting an event next week won’t work. Let’s plan, create a timeline and achieve more and, if you employ a Marketing Assistant who writes your social posts and blogs, let’s join up that thinking and work together.
So what do my clients think of my approach? One of my longest-standing clients is Dundee Science Centre who I’ve been working with for over 10 years. I was delighted to receive these words from CEO Dr Isabel Bruce:
“Claire really is part of the Dundee Science Centre team – she takes the time to understand what we need as an organisation, recommending and implementing the appropriate methods to achieve the best results. In particular, she appreciates the concept of widening access and carefully supports our organisation’s culture and ethos by producing inclusive and diverse content. Working across all levels of our organisation, supporting both junior and senior members of the team, Claire is also a great sounding board in terms of crisis management, tailoring our responses to meet the desired outcomes.”
If you’d like to hear more, please get in touch. I’d love to get you know your business! – firstname.lastname@example.org or 07912 324 264.