3 ways to minimize the risk and maximize the benefits of PR
When hiring a public relations firm, some companies or executives don’t realize that PR sometimes involves risks, and others think too much of the risks. It helps to understand more about PR and how it can benefit your brand before you hire a PR firm. Unlike advertising, you have little to no control of the timing, content and context of a story. Not realizing the risks involved in PR is mistake No. 4 from Axia Public Relations’ list of 15 mistakes companies make when hiring a PR firm.
The news cycle never stops, which means your timing is important to pitch efforts. You should consider things like TV sweeps as well as product launches, holidays and a client or reporter’s vacation schedule when you pitch the media. Many print magazines work three to four months (or more) in advance, so you may participate in an interview and the story doesn’t publish for quite a while. That means by the time the article publishes, your product may be out of stock if you’re not prepared. Or, the article may suddenly cause a major interest in your company once it publishes, resulting in a flurry of unexpected attention.
Perhaps you spoke about several topics during an interview, and the reporter focused on a piece of content that you didn’t feel was as important to the overall story. Ensure you follow key messages that your PR firm helps you craft about your company and its products to have the best content included in the story.
It’s important to remember that all conversations during an interview, including before it starts and after it ends, may be fair game to the journalist. Sometimes, the reporter uses an offhand remark out of context. Anyone who represents your company should have spokesperson training to prepare for a media interview, so they convey your company’s message thoroughly and accurately, and the reporter is satisfied.
While there are risks involved in gaining media coverage using PR, it’s also imperative to not overthink the risks. Overthinking the risks can mean you won’t receive the fruits of your PR firm’s efforts. The rewards from one published article are immense, with increased leads, website visits and overall brand recognition. One piece of media coverage can also lead to additional media coverage in other publications, especially when you’re prepared for a media interview with key messages and spokesperson training. Watch Axia’s media and spokesperson training webinar today to ensure you’re ready.
Marjorie Comer is an award-winning PR professional. She graduated from Rockhurst University with a Bachelor of Arts in communication and loves to cheer for her hometown Kansas City Royals. Marjorie has worked for Axia Public Relations since October 2011. Follow her on Twitter @Marjorie_Comer. Learn more about Marjorie Comer.
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