Kick starting Public Relations (PR)… when’s the best time?

Posted by – May 16, 2012

So many enthusiastic start-ups and SMEs are keen to see their names in bold print.

All have worked hard to build their businesses. Many have a solid customer base and are making a profit and many others desperately need more customers and are struggling to cover costs. Felicity Grey, Director at PR company The Theory Crew provides great insight into getting your business and key message/s into the media.


How to think about 'timing' your PR

No matter the stage your business is in, there’s no set rule for when is the best time to consider public relations (PR).  It all depends on your story and your audience. Some businesses try to use public relations and are unsuccessful. This is by no means symptomatic that the business concept is a failure. 

There are a number of factors that can limit your chances of success. Some reasons might be:

-       Your press release was badly written.
-       You didn’t make follow-up calls.
-       Your story wasn’t of interest to the media or was pitched to the wrong journalist.
-       Your story isn’t of interest to the general public, moreso to a niche audience.
-       You don’t have key messages.
-       Your timing was out.
-       A news event occurred which was out of your control and your story was dropped.
-       A journalist loved your story but the editor didn’t.




Key considerations when deciding how to go about creating PR impact: DIY or PR agency

Many businesses are rightly disenchanted with PR agencies because they pay expecting to see results and they don’t deliver. Here are some points to consider which will help you think strategically about when to embark on DIY PR or when to engage a PR consultancy; and what to ask for.

-       Do you have a strategic business vision with marketing activities and initiatives planned which you can link your PR efforts to?

-       Do you have a PR plan with a series of tactics including media?

-       Do you know who your target audience is and what drives them?

-       Do you have one or a series of announcements to make that are timely and newsworthy?

-       Are you in a hurry for PR for any particular reason and if so, what are your reasons? Is it ego driven or perhaps it’s because you have an announcement to make that can’t wait.

-       Is the media your only and your best way to promote or engage your target audience? What other avenues exist?

If you plan your PR strategy rather than simply jumping in, your results will speak for themselves. 

Many start-ups opt for PR because they want to build their customer base. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with this approach but other factors should be considered to make sure that your media efforts are best placed to gain results. By considering the questions above you will give yourself a strategic account of opportunities available to you and make sure you exploit them.

If you want to develop your own PR plan consider Theory Crew’s PR Planning toolkit available upon request at The Theory Crew.







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