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In our last blog we discussed the difference between marketing and public relations, which truly boils down to marketing focusing on products and services while PR concentrates on relationships and attitudes. With both of these areas changing rapidly due to tech advances and new media platforms, there have been many big changes to the public relations landscape.
Public relations will continue to be an essential activity to maximize the reach and visibility of your company. To ensure your efforts align with the direction the industry is heading, let’s take a look at the PR trends shaping strategic planning, communications and budgets for the next year.
Here are our 5 “must-dos” for successful PR campaigns this year:
Whether you target consumers with the latest new app or gadget or are seeking business audiences for big data analytics software, the content you develop will be spread across a variety of channels, including print, broadcast, digital and social media. With this broad spectrum of platforms, it’s imperative your content and messaging remain consistent across them all. Though different audiences may key in on different aspects (and your content should be customized to the emotional cues of each segment), the broad themes must be understood no matter where your audience chooses to consume content.
The press release is still, and will continue to be, the bread and butter of any PR campaign. A well-crafted press release must be relevant to many different types of journalists and bloggers covering a variety of angles, audiences and channels. Veteran PR professionals may be needed to ensure your press kit not only covers general interest topics to get picked up by newspapers and broadcasts, it must also be keyword optimized to be picked up in web and social searches. The best press releases will boost the SEO of both your company as well as the online publishers sharing your story.
Speaking of optimizing releases for bloggers, it is essential that your next public relations outreach include thought leaders and other influencers. Blog owners have passionate and focused readers that could easily overlap with your ideal target audience. Vloggers are the same, with viewership that tunes in for every clip shared, eating up the views of their favorite web personality. By enrolling these social influencers and digerati for your campaigns, whether through traditional pitching or paid engagement will be key to successful PR outreach.
While digital ad budgets continue to grow, and are expected to exceed TV spend by 2017, they must be spent wisely. Traditional banner ads and screen takeovers are increasingly inefficient and leading web surfers to turn to ad blockers. Native advertising and social ad campaigns need to be utilized to maximize reach and effectiveness. By weaving your content into news storylines and industry trends, your brand and message will be much more favorably perceived, resulting in better ROI.
With a more fragmented content channels and audiences than ever before, effectively tracking your coverage and engagement has become harder than ever. Happily there is a wealth of new tools available that make for simpler, unified measurement. Your CRM itself is probably one of the best to check first, in addition to Google Analytics and other PR tracking resources. Additionally, customer reviews as well as social media engagement are key pieces of the puzzle. Make sure your measurement system is up to the task of tracking your campaigns – and don’t be afraid to look to “traditional” metrics like subscriptions, followers, sign-ups and sales numbers!
As always, should you be interested in looking further into how these trends affect your business, please just contact us!
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