Publicity (© sdecoret / Fotolia.com)
Publicity (© sdecoret / Fotolia.com)

Publicity is crucial for the success of any business. But don’t fall for the promise that ‘all publicity’ is good. This post examines what good publicity really means for a business and how to get more of it using tried and true techniques.

Every business needs publicity or it will starve and die. Publicity is what a company uses in order to get attention and thereby to drum up customers and clients for its products and services. Without publicity, the best deal in the world won’t gain any traction.

But at the same time, a company must also know how to manage this publicity. That is to say that the old adage that ‘no publicity is bad publicity’ is not strictly true across industries. In fact, very often, the opposite is true: bad publicity can completely destroy a business. That’s why it’s so crucial that companies use public relations plans in order to create publicity and then to

How to Create Publicity for Your Business

In business it is absolutely crucial not to underestimate the importance of marketing. Marketing is what connects you to your clients or your audience and what gives you your customers, and without it you could have the best product in the world and still not make any money. Unless people know about what you're selling then you aren't going to make any profit from it.

The basics of marketing are quite simple too, and can fundamentally be boiled down to 'thinking of ways to get attention'. Advertising is one way to bring attention to your website, but marketing means using whatever methods you can to get people actually talking about your company and being creative in how you accomplish this.  This is where publicity comes into play.

Here we will look at some of the best ways to get attention for your business using smart marketing...

Release an App: Releasing an app is one of the most underestimated ways to get people to notice your business. Millions of people around the world own an iPhone or an Android phone, and a large proportion of those people will actively search for useful apps. If you can then include in that app a link to your website or somewhere where people can buy your product, or even just information regarding that product, then this is a great way to get a lot more awareness for your app. Make the app free, think of something people are likely to search for and likely to get use out of, and then just upload it to the Play Store or iTunes and hope it goes viral.

This can also be considered an example of PCP – Proper Company Promotion. That means launching a new arm of your business because that is newsworthy. Creating a new app or a new logo is a form of marketing, if it’s something the media will cover.

Sponsorship: Sponsoring something that lots of people are guaranteed to be aware of is a great way to feed off of some of that awareness. For instance, you could sponsor a large sports event, or a big team on that sports event, or you could sponsor a television program. This way you can ensure that the audience of that thing is reminded of your brand – just make sure you are happy to be associated with whatever you choose to sponsor.

Publicity Stunts: The good old fashioned, publicity stunt is something that isn't used nearly enough these days, but which can still pack a lot of punch as a way to get people talking about your business. Invest some of the money of a corporation into an event or a project and you can achieve all kinds of remarkable things – and if that gets the media interested then that's free coverage for your business that you couldn't pay for.

Competitions: Running a competition is another great way to get people interested in your business and actively writing in to you/checking your website. You can promote this through a range of magazines and other media outlets if they cover a relevant topic and if you offer people a good prize it can buy you a loyal fan base while making people feel involved.

Viral Campaigns: Viral campaigns take place mostly online and can range from videos, to memes, to soundbites. Whatever your idea though if it's creative and you can get people sharing it online then it can spread quickly without your needing to monitor it.

Events: Hosting an event such as a launch party and giving out invitations to interested parties is a great way to get exposure that will spread to the media. You can this way directly promote your ideas to a captive audience (who are unlikely to turn down free food and drink) and at the same time you can surround your launch with pomp and glamor that is much more likely to be reported on by the media than a simple press release.

How Companies Can Protect Their Reputations

If you run a company, then it's crucial to recognize the importance of your reputation. Your reputation is an incredibly valuable asset that can either earn you a huge amount of profit or stifle your growth depending on whether it's good or bad. The whole point of a brand is not only to make your products and services instantly recognizable, but also to provide a stamp of quality. In that sense, your reputation and your brand are one and the same thing.

OpenPR-Tip: Despite this, many businesses won't do enough to protect their reputation and will allow it to get damaged in a number of ways. Here, we will look at some of the things that may be hurting your reputation right now that you may not have considered to help you enjoy better PR at no extra cost.

Employee Policies

You might think of the way you treat your employees as an internal matter that wouldn't impact on the way your customers and clients see you, but you would be wrong. While your treatment of staff won't necessarily impact on the quality of your products, it can nevertheless get around and impact on the way the general public see you. Google is a prime example of a company that has elevated its reputation through being good to its staff, and it's something that also gains them a lot of free publicity. By allowing staff the time to do their own thing, and by letting them work in one of the coolest offices in the world (The Googleplex) they have boosted their reputation considerably. The opposite of course is also true though, and if you force yours staff to work unpaid extra hours and aren't generous with bonuses, then it's going to cost you support.

Eco-Efficiency

This is a big deal these days. If your company doesn't operate in an eco-friendly manner, then you can very well find yourself losing support and losing customers when it comes to light. Just doing little things - like using energy saving bulbs - can help you to act in a green-conscious way and save you from public embarrassment at the same time.

Think as well about the companies that you deal with and the policies you are supporting with your own investments. That said, be careful not to stray too far into political territory!

Driving

Another way to be more eco-friendly is to think about how your employees are driving. At the same time though, this can also help you to avoid upsetting other drivers on the road and making serious enemies that way. If a van with your name on it cuts someone up or causes an accident that's not great promotion for your business. Make sure you check the drivers' license online for anyone you employ and that you use training courses to improve their driving ability further. Finally, make sure that there are repercussions for any members of staff that do speed or otherwise cause offence on the road.

Customer Service

This is the big one. If you've ever been left waiting on the phone for hours to speak to someone, or had someone be rude and unhelpful to you when you do get through, then you'll know just what a big difference the quality of customer service can make. Don't cut corners by using a cheap call center - invest in quality service and see how it impacts the general good will for your organization.

The same goes for your general approach to business. Word of mouth is actually a strong tool for building publicity and one of the best ways to ensure this is the right kind of publicity, is to provide the best possible experience for your customers. Think about the kinds of positive experiences they might want to share. Often this means going above and beyond to surprise your audience in a positive way. This is called ‘under promising’ and ‘over delivering’. Likewise, adding a personal touch can make a huge difference. How about including a personal message of thanks for your audience?



         



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