When creating public relations campaigns, companies should always be relying on research and planning. There are no substitutes for these two elements, as they are essential pieces of PR management because companies have to be strategic in their efforts if they want to impact their reputations positively. Through research and planning, all communication from a given company is specifically targeted to an audience that cares about that information.
Research means understanding and segmenting the target audience, since not all audiences are the same. Some segments can be reached through social media, others through events, and all of the content that a company creates should have their audience in mind. Meanwhile, companies should also be planning, as well as creating a calendar to organize all of the promotional activities that the company will be doing. This also means creating a contact list of people in media, the industry, and of thought leaders to engage or collaborate with.
Attention from Media Outlets
The first step in improving a company‘s reputation through PR is by getting media coverage. This is done by offering journalists and reporters a story that they can’t resist. To get the best impact, a company should creatively develop a good marketing message and design it in a way that is newsworthy.
Media outlets are constantly looking for stories, specifically stories that are creative, new, or different. To get media coverage companies should be building a good relationship with local journalists, and have consistent engagements with them so that they don’t get ignored because they are unknown.
Press Release Structure
The key to any public relations effort is the press release. The ultimate press release is simply a very thinly disguised ad portrayed as a news piece. If it’s created in a way that’s too promotional, media outlets might not share it. When creating press releases companies should write them in a style similar to other texts in the publication where the press release is going to be distributed.
Furthermore, companies should make things easier for the journalists by writing their press releases in a reverse pyramid structure. The entire story should be contained in the headline of the piece, and then each paragraph should provide more information. When the press release arrives in the editing room, this will prevent the editors from cutting out too much of the information.
It’s not just sharing stories with journalists and media outlets that can help companies impact their reputations in a positive manner. Connecting with the target audience through content is another way that businesses can create a positive image for themselves. However, businesses can also engage with their target audience through contests, competitions, or giveaways as well as through participating in local events.
If a company can join in on events that are currently happening in the community where the target audience already is, that audience will have greater feelings of loyalty towards the business. At the end of the day, companies should be actively engaged in many events that are happening in their local communities, because by showing passion they can get more media coverage and improve their reputation.