PR practices to consign to the scraphead

With the ever shrinking media, securing mountains of coverage isn’t as easy as it used to be. However the explosion of social media and content marketing is providing businesses with a host of opportunities to amplify their stories to a much wider audience.

Here are a few examples of how you can wring the most from those well-crafted words you have so painstakingly put together for the media.

Post your media release to your website once it has been distributed. Create an online media or press-room where you can archive all your releases. Journalists exploring your site will be able to benefit, as will potential customers or clients. While competitors will also be able to view a release; keep in mind that by then it would already have been made public.

Reformat as blog. Just about any media release can be reformatted into a blog post. You might even want to transform it into a couple of posts, depending on the amount of information contained in the release. This provides fresh content for your blog and is an additional place for people to view the information. However a word of warning: don’t post your blog ahead of securing coverage as this could kill any opportunity for securing coverage. Your story would in essence be considered ‘old news’. Best post your blog as your stories appear in print.

Use content for social media purposes be it LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and so on. Again, don’t jump the gun. Make sure your story goes to print first. Once done, it is open season for social posting. However, make sure you include appropriate links back to your blog or online press room as this will help drive traffic to your web site.

Once you have secured coverage, what next?

A favourable media placement can be extended in a variety of ways, both online and offline. But you need to act quickly before the story becomes old news. Here are several ways to get maximum value out of your press coverage.

  • Link to coverage from website. Be sure to post links to the media placement from the online media room on your website.
  • Highlight coverage on your home page. Also feature your prized coverage on your site’s home page. It can be something as simple as just the media outlet’s logo linked to the story (for example, “As Featured In XYZ Magazine”). Even if you already have a separate press section on your site, not everyone will visit that page. You want your latest achievement to be under the spotlight
  • Get social. Today the majority of online media articles provide readers with the option of ‘sharing’ and/or providing comments so make sure you use this facility. In fact get all your staff to share the story with their connections on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and so on. This is relatively straight-forward and users will be led through the process via a series of prompts. If you can’t link to the article (because it’s subscriber content only), take a photo or screenshot, then share it on your social media platforms. Remember timeliness is key, so get cracking as soon as the story appears.
  • Send an email.Launch a special email with a link to the media placement to customers, suppliers and any other groups you think might be interested. Possibly use this as an opportunity to thank them for their support. If the placement is online, encourage them to share with their networks.
  • If your story does not get coverage, send your media release to your customer or client subscriber list regardless. They’re not likely to see the original media release so may appreciate the update.
  • Additional resources for sales staff.If you have a sales team, have them include copies of coverage as part of their leave-behind sales packets at meetings with prospective clients, at trade shows, and so on. However, make sure you have reprint permission first. To secure permission, ring the media outlet in question. Each has its own set of rules in this regard. Keep in mind, third-party endorsement from a news story adds more credibility to your company than advertising.
  • Promote in office.If your media placement is an article or blog post, frame it and show it off on the wall of your foyer. If you’ve got several clips under your belt, consider putting printouts in a portfolio book and leave it in your waiting room or at reception. Wouldn’t you rather customers flip through that than out-dated copies of magazines or newspaper?

Given that there are so many ways to communicate with the public these days, it would be a shame not to take advantage of them.

If you’d like help setting up your social media tools, developing a social media strategy or with any of recommendations provided above, contact Parker Public Relations on 0422 694 503 or via the contact form on the website.

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