Energize Your PR Efforts to the SMB Market
Public relations can be a powerful tool to grab the attention of small and midsize businesses (SMBs). Bredin research shows that SMBs are very responsive to articles and reviews, since they have the benefit of objectivity.
Follow these six steps to gain the most traction from your PR efforts:
1. Survey your market.
Reporters are unlikely to pick up on PR about your products or company initiatives. A better approach to engage reporters is to conduct research that SMBs will find useful. American Express and Intuit sponsor surveys regularly, as you can see from our Twitter feed. You will need at least 300 survey respondents for credibility with the media; 500 or 1,000 is better. Reporters respond best to data that debunks popular thinking or provides useful advice for SMBs.
2. Create the right relationships.
A successful PR strategy requires having the right list of reporters. The list that your PR team typically uses for product announcements and other company news may not include the right media contacts for a campaign designed to capture the attention of SMBs. Plan on considerable effort to get media pickup. The more you can tailor your efforts for example, calling out data for a particular city or region the better your odds of getting press pickup. Follow up via email or calls after you send or post your press release.
3. Coordinate your efforts.
Having people ready to speak to reporters can enhance the likelihood of getting press placement. A good combination is to have someone from your company and an outside authority or expert who can provide an independent viewpoint.
4. Include testimonials.
To really juice response, have SMBs available for profiles and interviews to speak to the trend or findings in your research. For example, a seller of computer security systems might sponsor a survey on cyber threats and include quotes from customers relating their experiences with the products.
5. Link to articles.
Link to any news articles that are written about your company from your website, email newsletters and social media sites. News articles are perceived as impartial, so they carry more weight than company communications.
6. Expand your reach.
Get more mileage from your survey data by repackaging it into a webcast, podcast or worksheet. Create an infographic or video to encourage sharing through social media.
Let Bredin execute a successful SMB PR effort for your company.