Public Relations 101: PR Basics and Pro Tips (Part 1)

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Public Relations 101: PR Basics and Pro Tips (Part 1)

Public Relations may seem like something only for large businesses, but PR is essentially about communication, and about crafting your message and image. It is about your business’s public image, especially how it is seen and talked about. This is closely linked to branding.

While many small and mid-sized businesses may not see a point in engaging with PR, having a well-crafted Public Relations strategy can bring your business, visibility, esteem, and, yes, customers as a result. This is because generating higher visibility can grow not only awareness but also demand and value for your services.

To help your business understand the foundations of Public Relations, our Axel PR experts are here to share these key basics and pro tips…

PR Guidelines To Improve Your Brand

Tip #1: Understand the role of Media. Unlike traditional ads, PR is often targeted to the media. The holy grail of PR is positive “earned media,” which is basically free visibility in the press. Earned media carries more credibility with audiences than paid ads.

As with all marketing and communications, it is important to know your audience to improve your chances of attracting earned media over time. Then find media related to your audience and your industry (especially if they overlap) and develop a relationship with people in those media outlets (be it magazines, newspapers, podcasts, or blogs). In 21st century PR, social media influencers are especially key players in driving publicity.

Tip #2: Learn to write a Press Release. This is the most basic way to get the attention of the media in a concise way that shows why your story is important and relevant to their coverage focus. Fortunately, there are many free press release templates available online that can help you start. Other common ways to reach the media with established PR methods include Press Kits, Endorsements, and Content Development. For more high-profile occasions, other options include interviews and press conferences, though these should not be done without consulting PR specialists.

Tip #3: Create a narrative. People naturally connect to stories, so all of your PR efforts should have a clear narrative to them. When crafting your narrative, be  relatable and look for impact. Remember: the goal is to create a connection with your audience. Having a central human component tied to your brand identity and the specific purpose of your release will help you create that connection.

Tip #4: Show your brand’s identity. Branding is one of the most important factors related to Public Relations. They should both be approached with conscious strategies that complement, support, and uplift each other. Your PR efforts should be “on brand” and in alignment with the character and core values of your brand, and show them with consistency. These days, there is high demand for authenticity in branding and communications, so it is important to stray away from canned and contrived messaging even if it sounds great on paper. This is why it is important to have a clearly established brand identity that can align with your messaging and with your business’s actions.

Because it is such a high-visibility field, PR can be intimidating. However, that doesn’t mean it is out of reach for small and mid-sized businesses. These tips will help you start to understand how to go about planning your PR approach until you are ready to bring in specialists for more complex strategies.

Stay tuned for more Public Relations Pro Tips, tricks, and strategies from the Axel & Associates PR experts!

Is your business ready to get to the next level? For in-depth marketing and communications strategies specially-suited to your business, reach us at (866-328-4329) or to schedule a free consultation and map out the best plan for you and your brand!

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