The traditional press release is still sexy. Sure, it’s trying to conceal a few wrinkles and hints of grey hair, but it continues to turn heads when it enters the room. And it’s still a power player for public relations professionals.
But the press release isn’t the only hottie getting winks and phone numbers. For anyone running a business, public relations is like oxygen – when it’s gone, so is the life of the business – so it’s crucial to harness other methods of getting the word out about your incredible company. Give these a try:
Toot your own horn every now and then. Without going overboard and sounding like an insufferable blowhard, it’s perfectly acceptable to do some modest bragging when the moment allows. For example, for awards you’ve won, or when you’re recognized by organizations in your field. Announce the good news on your website, on your business cards, and in your e-mail signature. You also could write a blog post to share with your contacts and social media followers. This is a big deal. It makes you stand out from the competition, and it validates that you offer a quality product or service.
Monitor your social media accounts. By sharing updated content, you stay relevant. And if you’re relevant, you stand a much better chance of being part of the conversation on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Sharing content isn’t enough, though. Pay attention to what people post on your accounts. If it’s a complaint, address it. If it’s constructive criticism, embrace it. If it’s simply an antagonistic comment, delete it. The more that you provide content that’s consistent with your brand, the more you’ll keep your followers engaged.
Make your mark at trade shows and networking events. The days of spending all your time sitting at a desk – and being a successful entrepreneur – are over. You need to get out there and cast a net. Trade shows come with a built-in filter where most of the attendees are actually interested in what you have to offer, so you’re catering to your target audience. Meanwhile, networking events allow you to build relationships with other professionals. If you make networking a regular part of your marketing efforts, you will create more opportunities to be the person that people think of when they come across someone who needs exactly what you offer.
In business, you’re always marketing yourself. Even if you hire a public relations team, you should play a stronger role in promoting your business. Your target audience is waiting and watching. So do it right and you’re sure to get a few phone numbers along the way.