Sam Brown, The PR Mastercoach, demystifies what PR is and how it can help to drive and build a small business.
There are many forms of marketing that a business can do. Social media, advertising, building a website, or creating brochures, for instance. All of these elements can help you to reach your audience with the message that you want to tell them.
But that’s what it is – it’s you telling them whatever it is that you want to say, which means that it’s only your word that they can take. It’s all about you.
PR is different.
PR is often thought of in terms of publicity, or media coverage, but PR is the art of reputation management. It’s about persuasion. It’s about getting other people to say ‘Hey, have you heard about this’ or ‘I’ve tried this and it’s great’.
The endorsement – whether it’s from the media, an influencer, or someone else – is what’s key.
Think of it this way; if a man tells a woman ‘I’m a good lover’ that’s advertising. But if a woman tells another woman ‘He’s a good lover’ then that’s PR. The endorsement gives the message weight, believability and impact.
So how does it work?
Well, it starts and finishes with your audience. Who they are, who influences them, what media they consume, what they’re into, and what benefit you can bring into their lives.
What story do you have in your business that will interest your audience?
What proof can you give to help them believe?
Who needs to tell your story in order for your audience to buy into it?
PR can work for ANY and EVERY business, regardless of whether you’re a fashion brand, a football team or a funeral parlour. Reputation is built and grown through it.
So, if your marketing is just ‘talking at’ your audience, maybe it’s time to think about how you can talk with them, and who through, in order to get your reputation growing. Because if you’re not doing PR, maybe your competitors are.
Sam Brown is The PR Mastercoach.
Sam has worked with businesses to build their reputation and awareness for over 20 years, and has worked with brands as diverse as London Fashion Week, Virgin Media, the Home Office, and P&G. She is the founder of ThePRMastercoach.com which provides PR training and coaching to businesses of all sizes. theprmastercoach.com