Greg Simpson, founder of Press for Attention PR and the PR and Communications Ambassador for the IoD in Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire, illustrates how to properly leverage media coverage.
I’m writing this having just secured some lovely coverage for a client, some of it is in their local press, some of it is in their trade press, some is in the national media – the perfect hat-trick if you will?
It features a story we have worked on for over a month, getting quotes from supporting parties and stakeholders, positioning my client at the heart of the story and essentially telling their market that you really should be talking to them. Bingo!
It is FANTASTIC coverage for them, but is it just tomorrow’s fish and chip paper?
Well…YES. Yes it is, if that is ALL they do with it. However, we are not going to simply sit around waiting for the phone to ring – that really is NOT how the whole PR thing works. You need to remember that PR is all about POSITIONING, so given the positioning opportunity we have created, we are going to make darn sure their prospects see it.
Oh, a note here on PR, Prospects and Suspects. Suspects are the folk who MIGHT buy from you if you target them correctly within a given media outlet. Your Prospects tend to be the folk who already know a little about you, might even be on your database, are existing customers or who follow you on social media.
PR can help you target both, but it really comes into its own with your prospects because of…yep, you guessed it...POSITIONING. So, we’re going to take this coverage and we are going to leverage it.
- We are going to shout it from the rooftops via their social media.
- We’re going to get the story out with the coverage via their e-newsletter.
- I’m going to use it to offer them up to other media for expert market comment.
Caution Marketing Rocket Science Alert
Use with caution…
And then, here’s the real genius. Here’s the secret sauce that is going to really power this PR campaign. They are going to buy copies of the magazines and PUT THEM IN THE POST. That’s right, they are going to go back to the marketing ‘Stone Age’ and actually post a letter. There’s going to be ink, a pen and EVERYTHING. Whisper it but there’s going to be a hand addressed envelope.
You see, coverage like this, third party testimony from a trusted source, a newspaper or magazine, is like gold dust. It is the best sales brochure they could send out right now to their prospects. Not their suspects, I’m talking about the people who have been in touch before, kicked the tyres, asked them to keep them posted, expressed interest, you know the drill.
Sure, press coverage is often the immediate goal of your PR campaign, but this is how you take it to the next level and get better ROI. You share your good news. In fact, look carefully and you’ll see that is what I am doing now. In fact, I’m off to buy 10 copies myself to send to MY prospects. Now do you see how to leverage PR?
A former business journalist, Greg Simpson is the author of The Small Business Guide to PR and has been recognised as one of the UK’s top 5 PR consultants, having set up Press for Attention PR in 2008.
He has worked for FTSE 100 firms, charities and start-ups and conducted press conferences with Sir Richard Branson and James Caan. His background ensures a deep understanding of every facet of a successful PR campaign – from a journalist’s, client’s, and consultant’s perspective.