Hey, you’ll never guess what happened to me last week. So stop guessing and I’ll tell you. You’ll love this.
You know my 200cc Vespa Granturismo scooter? Well, there I was stripping down the engine, and after I’d removed the actuator arm with holding spring, I noticed that the little brass bearings had very few cuts or pit marks (other than the oil gap cut through the middle). Fantastic, eh?
I see you’re not jumping up and down with excitement. And neither should you be, unless you’re a subscriber to Scooter Engine Stripdown Monthly.
My PiaggioVespa 2oo Granturismo – too much information
If that’s the case, you’ll possibly be wanting to know whether the breather was clogged when I unscrewed the clutch cover. You may be tempted to invite me to your ‘Scooter Nerds’ Facebook group. And if I told you about the Piaggio Vespa Bores’ Jamboree later in the year, you’d probably be asking ‘where do I sign?’
I’m sure you know what I’m driving at here and sorry if I’ve laboured the point a bit. But this is a good PR parable.
Message = don’t bore people who ain’t interested in the story you’re obsessed with telling.
Do match the story to the audience via the best outlet to ensure you end up with the kind of publicity you want and need.
It’s common for organisations to think in too narrow a way about PR and see it as just the regular sending out and monitoring of press releases. But I think it must be seen in a much wider context.
What kind of value should your company expect when paying for PR services?
If your company wants regular stories in targeted trade press outlets and mainstream media, your PR team must look beyond the carrying out of semi-automated mailings and move to a different way of doing things, encompassing all your marketing. First step: all the basic block must be in place…
Are all your social media profiles built and established? Is your branding done, and does it reflect what the company does and how it does it?
How are you reaching out to existing clients and staying in touch with them? Are you reaching out to key influencers, people who will help to create the stories that will enhance and build your reputation?
Is your MD or other key person identified as a thought leader in her or his industry? Are you helping them work towards this status, with blogs, ebooks, presentations and other media appearances, providing the requisite media training to do the job adequately?
Are you prepared to stand your ground with your PR agency when you need to? Do you respect and want your PR company to stand up to you and argue their ground when they are within their own area of expertise?
What you must demand of your PR agency
Your PR agency must work to create your stories and tell them through ALL your marketing channels, not just via pinged-out via mass-mailed press releases. So they must build and maintain key relationships.
And the stories that you create together must be authentic - or you’ll certainly be found out.
We often hear the term ‘marketing mix’ but for me this kind of implies that all the elements combine to form some kind of amorphous mass. Which I don’t think is right. All the online and offline elements need to work together in a joined-up way, but each must stand as a separate entity too.
Centralised co-ordination of all comms – internal and external is how you get the best results. A PR agency that can work with senior managers to agree strategy then build and manage an overview of everything, from blogging and social media to the creation and propagation of company stories, will almost certainly give you much better value than one which just pings out regular press releases. So you can see the importance of choosing your agency carefully.
Summary – good PR is a whole picture story. (A bit like how all the bits of a scooter engine work together. Errr…except for these funny shaped cog type bits of metal I’m holding in my hand. Oops, where did I put that screwdriver?)
Motor scooters aside, I hope you found these ideas interesting or provocative. Perhaps you disagree on some or all of the points. Please share your thoughts here.
Tags: Best Words PR, copywriter herts, copywriting agency, Holistic PR, How to create PR stories, Marketing PR planning