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Why Traditional Public Relations Shouldn’t Be Overlooked

10/11/2012
We talk a lot about social media and emerging marketing trends but it’s important to remember that there are core marketing elements that businesses should retain.
 
One of these is the notion of traditional public relations. Traditional public relations is often the most overlooked component of small business marketing plans. With the surge in social media and social networking, many businesses have ignored tradition and gone straight to Twitter and Facebook for promotion. While the landscape has definitely changed, the traditional rules of public relations should not be ignored. Problems arise when companies rely solely on social media for PR. Why? Because they lose the personal connections that true PR is built on. Another reason? Many people still view more traditional media as more trustworthy and credible.
 
So, what traditional PR rules should you keep, and what can you throw away?
 

KEEP

 
Targeted Media Outreach.
 
Pitching your business and your story to the right magazines, newspapers, radio, TV, bloggers, and websites is critical for success. Find the right contacts that will care about the message you are sharing.
 
Making Contact.
 
Building relationships and face-to-face contact is what yields the best results. Establishing a rapport with the writers you are pitching to will improve your interactions and increase the likelihood they’ll be receptive to your stories. Something as simple and meaningful as a phone call can be the difference in getting coverage or not. Reporters get tons of emails and that personal contact is truly the key.
 
The Wire.
 
Social media is great for creating buzz but you may not reach everyone. Provided you have a newsworthy angle, sending your message out through a newswire (PR newswire and PRLog.com are good options) can put you in front of writers that may not be aware of your brand.
 
Follow Up.
 
Don’t expect that sending a press release with no follow-up will get you positive results. Plan to reach out via email or phone a few days after your initial contact. Remember to be persistent and professional but avoid being a pest at all costs.
 

THROW AWAY

 
X Number of Press Releases Per Month.
 
Do not write and send press releases just for the sake of writing and sending a set amount of press releases per month. Unless what you have to say is newsworthy, step away from the press release. This old school practice can do more to water down your stories than it will help you get media coverage. Focus your time and attention on making quality contacts and pitching meaningful stories rather than putting non-news in a standard press release template because you feel you have to. Give your brand more legs by focusing on what’s really news and keeping your non-news for short tweets and status updates.
 
Just the Facts
 
Your press releases and pitches must tell a compelling story or you won’t get coverage. Taking up precious real estate with boiler plate facts and information about your business is a waste. Throw the template and rulebooks out on this one. Reporters want the movie trailer version with an angle.
 
Are you continuing to integrate traditional media in with your social media plan? How?
 
To grow your business with the Internet contact Realware today and ask about our services.

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