As a small business owner, I know first-hand how important it is to have a PR plan, but I also know that time, money, and resources are scarce!
So how does a business owner communicate their value – especially in an information-overloaded world, and rise above the noise?
The two questions small business owners must always ask when trying to get good press is:
1. How can you serve the local press/journalists?
2. How can you package your business in a way that the media will want to cover it?
Small businesses face many challenges when trying to answer those questions:
1: Time. They have a limited number of hours to focus on PR.
2: Money. They have limited dollars.
3: Business scalability. They have limited resources to dedicate to a PR effort.
4: Message reach. They have to put a plan in place to leverage all of the social media platforms to get their message out to as many people as possible.
5: Credibility/establishing “expert” status. It’s difficult to establish yourself as an expert in a crowded market.
6: Brand integrity/consistency. Throughout all PR and messaging, it’s essential to ensure messaging is consistent in every medium: websites, blogs, social media pages, etc.
How does a small business owner get the PR they need?
Here are 5 strategies small business owners can apply to get the PR they need:
1: Reinvention. Reinvent your company at every opportunity. Send out press releases for everything “new:” new products, new employees, new offices, new services, etc. Refresh your business so you stay top of mind in the media.
2: Relevance. Stay relevant to social, political, and market trends. Be current. Your content and messaging should correlate to other topics in the media that specifically impact your target market.
3: Consistent high quality content. Disseminate good, consistent content across all media and you will establish yourself as an expert in your industry.
4: Be a pitcher. Pitch the media on a regular basis. Pitch the same journalist every month. Build a relationship. Remember you are making their job easier if you provide valuable content. If you do it enough, they will eventually view you as a reliable and valuable source.
5: Correct mindset. Your mindset has to be about serving others – not about how great you are. It’s all about the story and the value of what you are saying, and how you will benefit others – not “look at me, look at me.”
My go-to small business PR expert is Christina Daves author of “PR for Anyone.” Christina joined me this month on my monthly ABC Washington Business Report Segment with Rebecca Cooper. Here is the video clip of our segment which has a lot more tips.