Raise Brand Awareness, Develop Media Relations and Earn Media Coverage
6. Personal Branding & Company Branding: Customer loyalty, Engagement, Is branding for small companies or large companies?
8. Branding and social networks: Creating a social media plan, how to succeed with an inbound marketing campaign, active social listening.
——Often Asked Questions——
Can I buy a link in Forbes?
How do I get featured in New York Times, Bloomberg or TechCrunch?
How can I improve my online reputation?
Do Press releases help SEO?
How do I get a backlink from Wikepedia?
Unlike advertising, when we talk about publicity, we refer to the organic diffusion of a product or company over the Inter, that is, thanks to proper brand management.
In opportunity, we will be diving specifically in how to get a massive response from your target audience through media coverage, without having to pay a single penny for it.
The ultimate goal is to generate buzz in on social media (posts, comments, and reviews), the classic word-to-mouth or motivate publications of influential figures (AKA Earned Media.)
Of course, an ethical and conscious approach at the business level must be taken; otherwise, you’ll risk receiving negative attention, as it happened to Zara and the backlash of “The Holocaust Pajamas.“
But don’t worry. To avoid that, we have summarized in 3 steps the ideal publicity strategy for 2019, from which you can guide and then add to the rest of your marketing resources.
- Communication campaign
Is it possible to get media coverage while being an unknown brand?
Yes, it is. And the way to obtain it is by creating expectation and interest in the media with information worthy of being shared (perhaps a big product launch, a charity event, etc.).
Since being featured in a headline or becoming viral (good idea + distribution channels = hype) is a type of promotion that you cannot access with money, you must know how the media works.
In this case, the task will be to determine which portals you want to be featured and creating the right message to reach them.
For example: If your business is to manufacture biodegradable shopping bags, you might be interested in reaching only the eco-sensitive public. Those channels are News Media, Lifestyle magazines and Blogs.
But it doesn’t end there, because mediums won’t find your solution without help. One of the ways to facilitate the work to journalists and generate a publication is sending a press release to them via email – created in a language designed for them.
- How to create a message (Press Release)
A press release should detail the information that you consider relevant and susceptible
to publication. As a brand, you must show them your proposal is:
- Relevant: Nobody is interested in giving voice to a product or a service that doesn’t seem useful or relevant.
- Striking: Within the sea of offers that exist, be your offer stands out.
- Organic: Users are interested in getting to connect with your brand, not just being used as curves in a graphic.
On the other hand – as Forbes suggests while quoting Kant – the document should be: clear, concise and easy to understand so it can easily permeate the public.
In the case of GoodNoon, as a PR agency, we have journalists and professionals responsible for analyzing the idiosyncrasy of the portal and making the messages for the client.
Additionally, the email must be accompanied by a brief message that highlights the most timely of the press release:
- What is the company/product about.
- Why is unique.
- Why is it important as a news source
- Domino effect
If you comply with the previous recommendations, and after contacting various media, you should have begun to receive Web notoriety.
This is the opportunity you need to scale up increasingly authority publications – until you reach Forbes, The New York Times or The Huffington Post.
Something to highlight about this strategy is that, in order for your brand to maintain a status as a “hot topic” of conversation, you must launch content continuously, either to share activities such as the results of a survey, alliances with other brands and important events.
Of course, it’s not just about increasing your pace to contact media. Gradually you will reach more people, and simultaneously other portals – not just those you’ve contacted – will also talk about you.
And yet, this is only a portion of what should be a complex, continually evolving marketing campaign that allows you to create a community around your brand.
- Opinion monitoring
We are monitoring the global companies on a daily basis, and their rating continues to be investment grade. We will take immediate action if anything goes wrong. Source
As we mentioned at the beginning of the article, keep in mind that it is not a paid promotion like an advertisement, which means the opinion generated from this coverage is outside of your control.
During this phase, if mistakes have been made or the content came off as ambiguous, it can become a harmful element for your brand. So, be extra careful.
Keeping track of the progress allows you to calculate the scope and impact of the media gained, as all of it is happening in external platforms and formats.
Proper brand management can be identified by combining the effect of the means earned, as it is Owned Media and Paid Media, resulting in a positive outcome (good brand reputation).
The reason? These three pillars of the marketing strategy are connected, so implementing the correct measures in the company’s channels are translated into paid media – then, you will start producing resources to continue with your marketing objectives.
Find out what the audiences really feel about your brand
When you are developing a publicity strategy, and you are starting to gain traction in the media, knowing what your brand users say on the Internet about you is essential for any business to continue growing.
Fortunately, in 2019 there are numerous techniques available to get this information. That’s why in today’s article we will review the most popular ones.
Additionally, you’ll learn about different focal points and what diffusion channels to choose as a starting point to measure your brand’s progress.
Publicity: Types of media
If you plan to carry out a massive marketing campaign and you haven’t yet done a thorough analysis regarding the brand’s online presence, you might be surprised at what your reach has been to date.
However, for those who are not yet adept in the matter, it can be challenging to know where to get the opinion from, since the online world extends in unsuspected directions.
To make things easier for you; these are the three types of digital media you must count on:
- Owned media: The resources under the company’s control to further its online presence, like Websites, apps, blogs, social networks, etc.
- Paid media: Those you hire to promote your brand such as Google AdWords, network advertising, or influencers.
- Earned Media: External diffusion platforms.
Earning valuable resources
As we suggested in the previous point, Earned Media are those spaces arranged by third parties for free. In other words: the outcome of your hard work. It can be from a mention on Twitter, user posts or content shared on Facebook, a review on a blog or even a viral video.
Why is Earned Media so important? Because organic promotion is born from there to your target audience, determinant for online reputation.
In short, users become an extension of the brand by replicating its message, creating content, communicating and sharing information around it, all of it without you having to spend a single dollar.
Get to know the power of your Earned Media
By winning free platforms on the Internet, you can strengthen the presence of your brand and increase its visibility, bringing it closer to the target audience through their peers.
It is important to value these “third parties” since they are people with an image and credibility in their audiences, that is, their followers.
And What does Earned Media look like? you can check out the flood of positive Tweets after the premiere of “Avengers: Endgame.” Is there a better way to replicate a message? Just like your offer, it is a product that has penetrated the public through the media, generating debate and hype.
That kind of promotion has even more relevant effects than a banner, so you should take advantage of this type of credibility.
But what happens when the results are not so noticeable at the beginning?
At this point, it has become clear that accomplishing Earned Media is a valuable and complicated task, but the difficulty arises when you want to measure its impact.
In fact, according to PRWeek points out that more than 60% percent of communication professionals still consider effective engagement measurement as one of the most challenging obstacles to overcome.
Unlike Owned or Paid Media, you have no control over what happens or what’s being said. However, it is worth the effort; once you measure the impact of your Earned Media, you can plan the next move faster.
But don’t worry, GoodNoon – to offer the best to our clients – we are constantly exploring new methods to quantify a brand’s progress, as is the case with the Earned Media.
Top tools to determine your Earned Media contribution
- Web referrals.
One of the essential publicity tasks is generating brand awareness, increasing confidence while attracting the right kind of traffic.
Knowing the type of traffic that surrounds your website is crucial because it can sometimes come from specific locations in the media. That way, you can create individual messages for that audience.
In order to analyze the traffic coming from this source, it is necessary to make use of tools such as Google Analytics, as shown in the image below.
As you can see, with the platform it is possible to know how your site acquires traffic.
Also, as an entrepreneur, you are interested in obtaining this information because, after having managed to receive media coverage thanks to a publicity campaign, some media may not include a link to your site when mentioning in a publication – which is something that must be fixed.
Another case is that there is a significant amount of visitors that come to you through the search engine. Track the type of conversation people are having regarding a particular product or line and, if you notice an increase in traffic, it is possible that there is a specific tactic of publicity you should replicate or intensify.
Mentions (you can read more about it here) allow brands to amplify messages to the media through others, such as their own media or social networks.
To monitor mentions, it is also necessary to incorporate external tools; however, don’t feel limited or obligated to use platforms only Google Alerts, because it does not include radio, TV or social networks.
In that case, you better opt for a premium tool that provides information with greater precision, like Brand24 and similar. If you want to know more, Hootsuite has a list with the most popular social media monitoring tools of 2019.
- Resonance of the message.
The message resonance is a metric that reports whether your preferred key messages are being included in media coverage.
To spot them, choose one or two succinct key messages and then determine through media measurement how many articles include those key messages.
For this metric there is still no reliable software to analyze it automatically, therefore, it is recommended that it be done manually. If you don’t have the time available, it is worth hiring a professional agency or marketer.
- Share of voice.
The share of voice or SOV is a metric that compares your mentions in media with those of your competitors.
Contemplating this data is a great help to better understand what types of ads and activities gain media coverage.
To calculate it there is a wide variety of platforms like Awario or Brandwatch that can be adjusted to the line of work your company executes, to measure the mentions of your company and the competition accurately.
Some can even compute the SOV based on the circulation and reading of publications. Additionally, graphs that report your brand’s daily conversations can help your marketing team establish relationships between campaigns and consumer engagement.
- Article’s quality scores
To finish today’s article, through quality scores it is possible to create your own table of media coverage based on the events that are most important for your company.
To develop this metric, you can assign a classification system to rate the quality of each publication or article.
For example: Depending on the client and his audience, you can assign 5 points for an appearance in a medium focused on business, 4 points for an appearance in a top commercial publication, and three points for an executive appointment, etc.
This allows you to work towards a numerical goal; subsequently, you choose whether is an annual, semi-annual or quarterly; Likewise, you can assign a rating according to the quality of the promotional content, reserving the highest scores for the articles that deliver key corporate messages of the brand.
And here another point, people don’t believe advertising, but they trust their family and friends, their social networks online, or journalists. When credible sources are talking about that brand, people will want to know what they are talking about and will look for it with a base of trust towards it.
Thus, the marketing dilemma presented here is: how to make people and authoritative source talking about me? If you are not Microsoft, Google or the AI inventor, unless you take critical steps to make this happening, it will not happen. And before you start making aimless attempts for achieving this level of attention – also called publicity – there are several doubts that need to be cleared out.
There are basically two types of groups to be targeted for leveraging credibility for your product or service: social networks (influencers) and media (media coverage). In this guide we focus only on the second group, although we will be briefly describing influencers and influencer campaigns on chapter 6. Also, we will be focusing on organic (or earned) media coverage, meaning media coverage where the editor or journalist naturally mention or feature the brand. This differs from branded or sponsored media coverage where the outlet gets paid for mentioning or featuring the brand.
“Essentially, advertising is paid media, and PR is earned media. Advertisers…decide what the ad will say, how it will look, where it will appear and how many times it will appear. They control the message.
News coverage is seen as more trustworthy precisely because the message cannot be controlled. The story is being told by a trusted third party.”.
The first step is understanding the different types of format that media offer, focusing on the other chapters of this guide on how to achieve them. This chapter will help you answer the following questions:
- Which media placement formats exist?
- What are the differences between them?
- What advantages and disadvantages does each one of them have?
- What are they best suited for?
- How can I successfully get them?
- What should I do after I receive them?
The most common types of media formats are press releases, mentions and features.
Press releases are, putting it simply, information about a newsworthy event that is later used to contact journalists. The main difference of Press Releases compare to the other formats is that these get distributed ONLY to press releases sites.
I common call I get sounds like “can you get my press release on Forbes?”
And I am like “Forbes has no section on their site for press releases”
The client “okay, then I want my press release to be featured in CCN”
And me again “we can’t feature your press release in CCN, but we can certainly help you feature you or your company. As per your press release, I can have this distributed to press release sites.”
A press release is normally a piece of news shared by the organization itself directly written by them, and providing all the details about a launch or a particular event. With a press release, readers will get to know the company and the great things they are doing. Press releases, however, have a very low impact. As the piece is written and provided directly by the company and not written by a journalist, it has 0 authority value. Also, these are shared normally to PR aggregator rather than news sites, as a result generating low traffic. But let’s summarize advantages and disadvantages.
- It can reach our objective public very quickly.
- It is normally provided at a low cost.
- Might be targeted to certain locations, increasing your chances of reaching your target audience;
- Although is very questionable whether Press Releases has a direct impact on SEO, they do provide lots of backlinks which certainly helps your metrics.
- There is no credibility added from a specific media outlet or journalist.
- Most editors ignore press releases when writing their pieces.
- Traffic generated through press releases is normally very low.
When should we use it?
The ideal moments would be the launching of a new line of products or services or an event such as a speech, a party or a charity event. You could also combine this with video PR previewing the avenue of your event.
Every time someone talks about your brand in social media, an online publication or a blog, you have gotten a mention.
They are characterized for being more informal since anyone can generate a mention on any website. However, they contribute greatly to your media reputation, so being informal does not reduce in any way their utility.
As we have reported on here the most commune types of mentions are brand and quote mentions:
Quote mention: the mention is introduced through a quote from a company representative. Sample:
“When it comes to reputation management, timing is key.”, says Roberto Liccardo, CEO of GoodNoon, an award winning marketing company. “The more reactionary your response appears, the more damaging it is to your reputation. By getting ahead of these things, you can control how they unfold and avoid the dominance of conjectures in the media, instead of cold facts.”
Brand mention: the mention is introduced only through a backlink. Sample:
For instance, the goodnoon protocol provides a framework for developers to build powerful dapps, enabling everyone to easily authenticate and manage their digital or real-world assets (such as original content, ID, university degree, in-game item or a house) on the blockchain. This can also help with gathering and verifying all types of data, including news and other information shared online.
- Get immediate feedback on how people perceive your brand, as well as a sense of your online visibility.
- Positive mentions establish a relationship of trust and increase your credibility.
- Mentions GREATLY help SEO if they link back to your website.
- Mentions help you become a point of reference in the industry.
- They can be hard to track, although as presented earlier online tools might help in this direction.
- If the mentions are negative, they will have the opposite effect of what you are trying to achieve.
- You cannot control directly if people will mention you.
In the web, in the eyes of Google and to those of your clients, the more mention you receive, the better. However, since you cannot really control the feedback they express, you should develop together with your media coverage and PR plan a customer service improvement plan to make sure your brand is well perceived through the web.
This type of media coverage is characterized by being more elaborate.
It usually has a deeper structure, since they don’t only introduce a brand, but also help the reader to embrace its culture, to like its concepts, idea, and develop a relationship with that specific brand.
Features give a deeper view of a business and company so they help people to link to with their vision in a much a stronger way that mentions and press releases can do.
- Features provide a lot of information regarding a brand.
- People who read a feature will feel compelled by the brand.
- The feature turns a brand into a reference for your industry.
- Most companies don’t qualify for features. Thus, hiring a PR agency is often needed to achieve this type of coverage.
- Features come with a high level of competition.
- To obtain features it is needed to have market traction, which means there needs to be evidence about what you are saying.
When should we use it?
A PR agency will help you to feature your brand, making sure that you have something worth sharing with tangible results.
Features often come with statistics, research, and expert opinions so make sure you are able to provide these.
How can we generate media news?
Since you cannot control media news directly, the best way to influence others is through the uniqueness of your brand. However, offering the best service is not enough, and sometimes it is not even necessary.
What we should focus, instead, is in making relations with the appropriate people. Once our media reputation starts growing, we should see an increased flow of coverage.
Let’s walking into some ideas to generate media coverage for the specific formats described.
- A newsworthy event.
If you try to ask for a press release for an irrelevant new, you will soon find out the consequences. So this step is the most important one and cannot be ignored.
If nothing worth telling has happened, then do not tell it.
- Write the statement you are going to send.
You have to make sure that 60% of your content focuses on answering six key questions that will allow the editor to see it is newsworthy.
Who? What? When? Where? Why? How?
Once you have the answers in your press release, you have to write about the details. 35% of the information will focus on these, while the remaining 5% will explain some background information.
If you fail to follow this pattern, you will get ignored.
- Send the statement to your chosen media outlets.
It is important to consider your target audience. You can study which people usually read a specific newspaper or webpage in order to aim effectively.
If you pick one with public interested in your brand, you can already consider you have succeeded.
- Make sure to have your website and social media in order for visitors.
The purpose is drawing attention, so once you have it, be quick to make said audience yours. You have to engage them immediately after they read the new.
Even if they just share it with friends, it will be a valuable resource, so take advantage of it.
Rules are a bit different for mentions since anyone can make them. However, they are just as strict.
- Encourage them.
You can use your social media to interact with your audience.
There are plenty of methods, but make sure each time you publish something, you ask people for their opinion. Use polls and creative pictures to make people share and interact. Create interesting content that is worth sharing.
If you keep giving in your interactions, you will also start receiving feedback.
- Track your mentions.
This step can be complicated without strategies. Therefore, before you pick a tool, you have to understand where will most of our mentions come from.
Social media are some of the most common sources, but you should also stay alert for any blog or website that backlink to you.
In general lines, the tool you choose should not only track mentions but be able to do sentiment analysis to determine if the mention was positive or negative. In this way, you will have an idea of your media reputation and what do consumers think of your brand.
Once you start receiving more mentions, you will not be able to read each one so this will give you more practical feedback.
Some tools to consider are:
Mention – This service tracks keywords. If you track your brand’s name, you will receive a mention through email or push notification each time someone mentions it. It looks all over the Internet and has different plans according to the number of mentions. It does also include a sentiment analysis.
Buzzsumo – It allows you to track your brand, but it also extends to competitors, keywords, authors, domains, and backlinks. You can set content alerts or create a personalized dashboard to see them all together.
Hootsuite – Aside from handling your social channels, this tool can help you to set streams with Mentions as a filter. You can do it for each one of your social media, as well.
If you need any other tool, you can review this article for more information.
Before you even start to contact journalists, you need to cover several points.
- Have something worth talking about.
It is not enough to have breathtaking news. What you tell needs to be mind-changing at some level.
- Gather enough information to back up your statements.
Find experts in the topic to interview, research for statistics or studies that could be useful, and find satisfied customers who can talk about what you have done.
You are taking a huge part of the work out of their shoulders. Even if they prefer to research on their own, this will show you are truly providing a story worth telling –and a true one.
- Study where do you want to see this media news published.
Each publication has its own style and has different criteria for what they call good. So make sure to study the patterns and see where does your story fit.
- Make sure to be attractive.
Since you are going to have competition, help the journalist to envision the story. In this way, they will be personally interested in publishing it.
How to take advantage of your media coverage?
Once you convince someone else to talk about you in a positive light, you are halfway through.
Your company has increased its credibility, there is a good chance to increase your visitors on your website or social channels, and you can feel happy your company is worth writing about.
However, if you stop there, you will not reach as many people as you could have, and all the effort will vanish too quickly.
So, the key is to act immediately. If you actively promote the media placements generated, you will see better results.
Ideas for promotion of press releases and features
Be ready to mobilize your marketing resources. If you start a campaign, more people will read these articles and share with their social circle.
Share through your own social media channels. When doing so, always credit both the journalist and the media outlets.
Take advantage of hashtags. These useful tools will help the news to reach relevant audiences.
Be sure to feature some excerpts in your own website. The best place to do it is either on your blog or your news section. As per usual, make sure to give credits and only show a little part of the work.
Give your followers more information about the topic –if you share the article, you can follow up with subsequent posts where you supplement with videos or pictures, for example. This will help you to keep interested for a longer time.
Use social media advertising and sponsor the link to the article. You can use articles or just plain ads for this task.
Although domain authority – and similar metrics to compare domains in the web – does not directly impact media coverage and publicity, I decided to add it to this guide since it is true the other way around.
Indeed, media coverage does have a direct impact on your site metrics ,obviously, in a favorable way. There is a direct correlation between the trustworthiness of a website with the principal domain.
As said earlier, having a higher domain authority does not mean to have a higher chance of being covered in the Media, however it is true that well-established website and brands normally do carry hugh domain authority.
Therefore, you need to know how to establish your website as a trustworthy site developing good media relations. To be noted also, that there is an obvious and recognized relation between domain authority and the increase of ranks in Google.
In this chapter, you will learn:
- What is domain authority?
- How can you increase your domain authority?
- What is reputation management?
- How can you successfully handle reputation management?
- What is Moz platform?
- How can you use Moz platform?
- What is TrustScore Majestic?
- What are Flow Metrics?
- How to increase your flow metrics?
Domain Authority (DA)
If you, like me, did digital marketing in the nineties and/or early ‘2000s, you certainly remember Page Rank. Page Rank was an algorithm developed by Google – expressed on a numerical scale from 1 to 10- that told you how authoritative a specific domain is.
This score was dropped by Google with very obscure reasons, and marketers found themselves without such comparative scores among domains. Recently, a company called Moz came up with a metric called “Domain Authority” that, as for the words:
(DA) Measured in a range from 0 to 100, with 100 being the highest value. Therefore, the goal is to get as close to 100 as we can.
You can apply this “system” to help you establish media relations with other relevant people in your industry, as well as turning your company into a solution for any customer. This is an excellent way to increase sales without even making publicity.
However, if you have more years running your company and the overall reputation is neutral or bad, the next step is to erase this perception from people’s head and start fresh before even improving it.
How to manage your reputation?
When it comes to Online Reputation Management (ORM), there are four steps you need to take to improve it. But, what exactly is what want to achieve? To feature your product or your business in the news? Increase sales?
Once you know this clearly, it will be easier to handle it the rest of the steps:
Research – Find all the information available about your brand. Many tools can help you with this. Communities in social media are also good sources of data.
Analysis – Once you’ve gathered all the required data, check out what does the public think of your brand, which will determine how far is the situation from your objectives, and what needs to be changed.
Action plan – This topic will be further discussed in the next chapters.
Monitoring – Once you start putting the previous plan in motion, you have to stay alert for mentions of your website and how does perception change. If the results are not what you expected, consider changing the whole thing.
Tools for Domain Authority and Reputation Management
You already know how important are these two concepts, so you must also know how to determine then correctly. If you want to see your business in the news, you have to start by having a good rank on your website
Google’s PageRank was the best tool, but since it has not been updated for many years, many people have resorted to using other types of data analytics resources.
Here, we will only discuss a few of the most popular tools in 2019:
This social listening tool tracks the mentions of your brand in the main social networks and the web in real time while allowing you to act on them (interact, answer questions, solve doubts, etc.) directly from the App. The tool offers features like graphs and feeling analysis that measures the proportion of positive and negative mentions of your brand.
Besides, the software identifies copyright violation and finds people who copy your content. And yet, the best utility of Awario by far would be the enabling of competition analysis and follow-up.
You can choose to focus on a single platform or monitor all of them depending on your needs and your objective audience.
In this sense, it is worth mentioning that Awario not only monitors the mentions in social networks but also finds them in other platforms such as forums, blogs, and news websites.
Basically, Awario is a tool that finds the keywords that you are interested in monitoring and helps you manage this information.
It has a control panel where you can see and interact with the relevant conversations about your keywords, statistics about the type of mentions, scope, and influential users.
This one is very convenient for off-line brands eager to monitor its business performance in several locations. For example, you can delve into why some strategies are not working on specific locations and also calculate the overall reputation of your brand in said areas; all of that along with the option to respond whether they are reviews or comments from users within the App.
A great pro would be that Reputology integrates with Hootsuite for the control panel and social media management.
By using social listening in your favor, your business strategy will emerge from the fearsome darkness that we mentioned in the previous chapter. “But, why?” You will not miss the mountains of actionable data about real people who are talking about your brand or your sector actively online.
If you give the importance owed to this resource, you will show your target that you care about what they are saying about you on social networks, and that is an excellent commercial policy.
As you start collecting social data, you’ll get an idea of your brand’s standard in terms of the amount of conversation and general feeling. Once you establish your point of reference, you can work actively to improve those figures. Also, you can be aware of the changes.
The considerable changes in the coupling and feeling are signs that the general perception changed, and you must understand why so that you can adapt your strategy to get involved and take advantage of the benefits, or correct an error and resume the course.
Also, you can compare your own participation and feeling against those of your competitors to get an idea of your general position within the perception of your customers in the sector.
We’re talking about one of the most valid complaint searchers available. By using it, you’re able to improve the impression your brand is making by searching more than 40 websites to see if someone has left a complaint against your company and then solve it.
The tool actually shows which are the most popular comments, the qualifications of your brand and mold your image in on most of the websites that control the platform.
This is another excellent tool for social analysis and listening since it has features such as image recognition, trending topics, and API access. Ergo, it is not a cheap tool, but the results are worthy for a lot of startups.
You’ll be able to see an entire demographic analysis of people who talk about your brand, including gender, interests, occupation, and location. It has extensive coverage of social networks that include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, to name a few.
Additionally, it allows to visualize data and combine them with Google Analytics, Buzzsumo, and Hootsuite for an integral analysis.
ReviewTrackers monitors online reviews of your brand in more than 100 sites. Also, it allows you to configure email alerts to receive notifications and create custom reports. Besides, the tool groups the comments of your target audience and active clients show which aspects they tend to mention the most.
It’s available on App both for iOS and Android, which enables you to track in real time and respond on the fly.
Having said all of that, I must note that, being these only tools to perform a particular task, the real work continues to fall on monitoring the control panels to detect anomalies. By doing this, you will be able to respond effectively to all kinds of situations, improving your online reputation
in the process.
Media coverage is one of the most important things when it comes to building a good company. In this way you can give credibility, increase the amount of advertising of your brand and make it recognizable for the public in general.
But what you have to consider is your company’s value. Here’s one of thing it does: Media coverage helps SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
Is SEO still relevant in 2019?
At this point, it is more than clear that Search Engine Optimization (SEO) must be integrated within your business’s own publicity strategy or as a priority for your communication team. If you still can’t perceive in depth the activities making up this marketing resource, you can always read the SEO guide made by Backlinko or ClickMinded’s tutorial for beginners.
However, once its most obvious function has been tackled, proper positioning alone is worthless if it doesn’t contribute to long-term brand’s objectives.
That’s the reason we’ll be discussing this subject from the perspective of Media Coverage, in order to teach you how to carry out the 2019’s SEO strategy along with the rest of publicity activities – as it is a publicity tool by itself.
Backlink are words (or images) that take you directly to a web page. Usually these are placed in bold or in another color to ensure a click on the part of the visitor. Surely, browsing the web, you have found several of these.
While a website possesses links to other quality websites, the greater the authority of the website for Google, so this will ensure you a good place in the search ranking.
The process for obtaining external links is called link building. However, it is important to know that not all links serve to achieve this goal.
If your website has a couple of months of life and a quality not pleasant to the visitors, you will not be able to obtain the result you are looking for, so it is important that the better the link sites are cataloged, the greater the popularity that your site will receive from Google.
ADVANTAGES OF BACKLINKS IN SEO
It is very important to have backlinks of quality sites, so they must be contextual. Let’s continue with the example of real estate, if you have a site about real estate, and want to create links from other niche sites, these will be of no use.
Now let’s see why it is important for your website to create backlinks on your site:
IMPROVES ORGANIC CLASSIFICATION
The backlinks help you get a good ranking in any search engine. If your content has organic links from other sites, the content by search rank will have the highest position in the search engines.
The main objective should be the creation of links to individual posts / pages along with your home page.
FASTER INDEX OF THE WEBSITE
The backlinks help the robots to discover links to your site and to track your site effectively. Especially for a new website, it is important to get the backlinks, as they help in the faster positioning and indexing of your sites.
One of the main benefits of backlinks is that they help get referral traffic. In general, if you do not create a good reference traffic, you will get a low rebound rate.
HOW TO GET TO GET BACKLINKS
Something important that you should take into account about SEO and backlinks is that the goal doesn’t lie in the amount of backlinks, but the quality of them for when you want to have a good average reputation.
If you are using some paid services to get links to your site, you are likely to end up being penalized by Google in the future.
AHREFS FOR BACKLINKS
It is also very important to know where to get backlinks and if they really help with the correct training of your website with the search positioning.
- Write impressive articles
- Start commenting
- Submit to web directories
How to find backlinks (to any webpage or website)
- Go to Ahrefs Site Explorer
- Paste in any URL or domain (e.g., https://competitor/blog/blog-post/ or https://competitor.com)
- Select the “exact URL” (for web pages) or “*.domain/*” (for websites) mode from the drop‐down;
- Go to the Backlinks report (on the left‐hand menu)
You’ll then see backlinks pointing to your chosen website or webpage, plus lots of data, including:
- Referring page (where the link comes from);
- Anchor text (the clickable words that link to the target page);
- Traffic (estimated Google search traffic to the linking page);
- First seen (when we first saw the link).
Your brand, product and service can be the best one out there. But, if you want people to choose you, make the brand’s screen appearance continuous and unforgettable. That means making sure you’re only getting featured in large media -since that’s where most of your audience is going to be- with high-quality material as backup.
Unfortunately, in order to get there you cannot just outreach journalists and ask them to write about you like some kind of favor. If you want more publicity, then you need to produce the type of content you want to share.
So, to do it successfully, you have to develop your content marketing strategy and start executing it.
When you finish this article, you will know:
- How to define your goal for content marketing?
- How to measure your progress?
- How to define your target audience using an analytics tool?
- What type of content pieces can you use?
- What content management system should you use?
- How to define which topics are you going to cover?
- How to create your content?
- How to generate topics for your niche?
- What tools can you use for generating topics?
- What tools can you use to manage your team?
- Should you take advantage of timely topics?
- How to distribute your content?
- How to use Paid Content Distribution?
- How to get Earned Content?
There is a list of resources below.
What is Content Marketing?
According to the Content Marketing Institute, it can be defined as:
“A strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.”
In other words, the focus of content marketing is the creation and distribution of useful content, and it has the objective of making people purchase a product, service or subscription –generating incomes of some sort.
This is achieved through two steps:
- Calling people’s attention to the content and brand.
- Making a compelling call-to-action (CTA).
Therefore, this article will be focused on helping you to develop good content marketing to promote yourself, improve your media reputation and increase your sells.
Other possible results are being able to feature your product and your business in the news.
Creating your Action Plan
Before you start doing anything else, you need to trace a clear action plan –or review the one you already have–.
A good outline will allow you to keep generating content and to truly take advantage of this strategy.
1. Define your goal
You have to know the specific purpose you are trying to achieve. If you are making an effort to produce content, you have to understand why are you doing it and when are you going to achieve it.
There are many reasons why companies start producing content marketing. Some of them are:
- Increasing the traffic on your website.
- Establish your business as an authority in the industry.
- Increasing the number of sales (and therefore, improving revenue).
- Reduce marketing costs through more effective content.
- Create social media relations and produce engagement.
Once you know why you are focusing a part of your effort in content marketing, it will be easier to understand what kind of content will help you to reach your goal.
How to measure your progress?
If you already know what are you working towards, there is still a huge question left: how do you know you have achieved it?
This is done through the setting of specific goals or KPIs (key performance indicators).
These will help you to track your progress towards your goal through specific data, and improve your strategy if you are not progressing at a good rhythm. Some possible KPIs are:
- Getting a particular number of mentions, shares, and comments in your content.
- Increase your number of new email subscribers.
- Make more people signup for your lead magnet.
- Increase your site traffic.
- Hit a revenue target.
They will depend on your primary goal, but make sure they can be measured through numeric means and have a defined date.
2. Define your audience
People will see your content only if you cover their topics of interest –so you must understand first your target audience.
Once you know who they are and what they like to see, you can produce valuable content that they will see and probably convert on.
The easiest way to determine it is through analytic tools such as Google Analytics. The advantage of this tool is that it allows you to have an overview of their interests.
You can also use web analytics, email subscriber analytics, and social media analytics to know information such as age, gender, education, and income.
You can look for other analytics tools in this article.
3. Choose a content management system (CMS)
This will be an essential tool to keep track of all your publications and schedule your incoming content.
Depending on where you are going to publish (which will be discussed in the next point), you will probably need tools for handling both your blog and social media.
A popular option is a WordPress website hosted on WP Engine. It is easy to handle and allows to manage all your content effectively, as well as having an overview.
You can also use HubSpot software to plan, produce, publish and measure your results.
You can check for other open sources CMS in this article.
4. Get customer feedback
You have to be able to track your results and how your target audience is reacting to your content. This will allow you to refine your process and have better results along the way.
Usually, you can measure your success in four ways:
- Referral traffic.
- Engagement metrics.
There are many tools to keep track of one of these points. We will not be covering them in these articles, as most of them can be seen in the statistics pages of your chosen CMS.
Starting to Create Content
Once you have a plan for approaching content marketing, you have the job to generate the content you will share.
This is what you will be doing most of the time since it will allow you to establish strong media relations and generate trust with your audiences, as well as sales.
So, where do you begin?
Define what are you going to talk about.
You have to know what topics are you going to cover.
These topics should not only be related to your brand but must solve a problem for your audience. This type of meaningful content will make people engage and convert later on.
So even if you do not feature your product in each publication, you will be promoting your company successfully since you are establishing yourself as an expert.
You also need to remark why you are better –or different– than your competition. The best way to see your business in the news is to offer something unique.
Choose what kind of content formats are you going to use.
There are many types of content pieces. Which one is more useful will depend on your public and the kind of information you want to share.
You can see a general overview of each type of content piece and how to use it below.
Where are they published?
They are usually uploaded on a website. They can also be shared easily through social media and in other people’s blogs.
What type of content are they suitable for?
They are made for providing valuable content that invites to a conversation –in this way; people will share it with others. Usually, they have a length between 1,000 and 2,000 words.
How often do you have to share this content?
You should publish regularly. The minimum would be one post per week, but depending on how much interaction you receive, you should increase to one post per day or even more.
Other things to consider
Try experimenting with different types of posts. Some of them will attract more attention than others.
They are also useful for establishing media contacts. Other experts will see them and start recognizing your brand.
Where are they published?
Potential customers download them on your website. To receive the content, the creator of the owner will make them fill a form with their contact information.
What type of content are they suitable for?
They are excellent for providing in-depth content that could not be covered in a single blog post. Therefore, a good idea is to offer them as supplementary information and make a call-to-action (CTA) where they end up on a landing page.
How often do you have to share this content?
You can publish them less frequently, but make sure to link them when they are relevant in your other contents.
Where are they published?
They can be either shared through your website or social media.
What type of content are they suitable for?
They allow to organize and visualize data in a more straightforward way. Therefore, they are useful for summarizing a lot of data in a clear way. They can also be used as companions of blog posts.
How often do you have to share this content?
Pictures are attractive, so consider using them often as a way to call people’s attention.
Where are they published?
Just like infographics, they can be used both on your website and social media.
What type of content are they suitable for?
Any highly engaging information you want to share will be more attractive for your costumers if delivered in video.
How often do you have to share this content?
As often as you should. According to a Hubspot Research, they are the most preferred form of content and are pretty effective capturing people’s attention.
Where are they published?
This content can be shared on several websites. Each one of them has different aims and public, but we are going to cover here only the most important social media websites.
What type of content are they suitable for?
This will depend on the social media itself. Most of them will allow you to use memes to establish a relationship of trust with your public.
Facebook and Twitter are better for sharing both text and pictures, drive traffic toward your website and share links of interest.
LinkedIn is usually used for sharing blog posts on professional topics.
Instagram, Pinterest, and Snap
chat are mainly visual, so you will have to focus on pictures, infographics, and videos.
For the other side, YouTube only allows videos, but it will enable you to share lengthier videos.
How often do you have to share this content?
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Snapchat will require posting several times in the day, as well as interacting with your public.
LinkedIn and YouTube allow more elaborated content, so publishing weekly is a good goal.
Other types of content
The content previously mentioned covers some of the most popular ways to interact with your target audience.
However, if you want to know about other possible ways to share information, check this article.
Research your niche to generate topics
Once you know what you want to talk about, where are you going to publish it and what type of content will be, you are ready to start generating topics.
Luckily, you do not have to sit in a chair and think all day long to find good topics. There are several tools for generating topics.
Some of them are:
- Buzzsumo. You can type a keyword and see what type of articles have been shared. This is a useful resource to see what kind of topics have reception between the public.
- Feedly. You can keep track of all trend topics in your industry through this RSS feed. In this way, you will find content ideas.
- BlogAbout. It shows common headline formats while adding blank spaces where the subject of the article would go. This will allow you to know how to show your ideas to the public.
- Quora. This social media is used for making and answering questions, so by seeing common questions you will have a problem to solve in your next article.
There are plenty of other resources you can use for brainstorming ideas and keep making content. You can read this article for more information.
Choose how to manage the generation of content
Once you know what is going to be created and where it is going to be published, you have to make sure to order said information.
This is key if you are working with a team since every member will be working on the creation of different content.
To keep track of what is happening, you can use tools for project management. Some useful websites are:
Asana – This popular website and mobile app have been in the market for many years. It offers a simple design where you can make different subcategories, assign tasks and keep track of how work is going.
Trello – This is a Kanban-based project management tool, which means it uses cards for ordering information. It allows you to have easy task management, drag and drop tasks easily and quickly manage your project. However, its practical design will not be useful for large scale projects.
ClickUp – This tool has functionality and features along with a simplicity that will allow everyone to use it. Some of its advantages are getting multiple views in the same project, rescheduling tasks in bulk, and using recurring tasks and checklists.
For other tools, more information or comparison of their functionality, you can check this article.
Distributing your Content
You can create content and publish it, but this is only the beginning.
your work afterward will be to outreach journalists to increase your media reputation and receive other benefits.
You will also have to use different strategies for reaching more people with your content. This is called a distribution plan, and it will allow you to establish yourself as an undeniable authority.
Once more people start seeing your content and feel attracted to your website and social media, your sales will increase subsequently.
There are some strategies for distributing content. What you do will vary, of course, depending on your industry and your media contacts. In general outlines, however, we can define two courses of action.
Paid Content Distribution
This method is infallible, in a certain sense. You can be sure people will see your content once you pay to distribute. Advertisement, for example, are popular ways to start increasing your visibility.
However, you must make sure you only share the highest quality content. Otherwise, people will start ignoring your brand and considering it trash content.
That is why you cannot skip any step of creating valuable content and directly start distributing it through paid content.
To be effective, you have to make a proposal of value that will impact everyone around you and then share it through this type of media.
Once you start sharing content regularly, you must make sure you to outreach journalists in their websites and social media.
As long as you genuinely provide information of value to their content, they will notice this interaction, and it will be more likely they want to feature your product or your business in the news when you ask them.
This content does not cost you money, but it will require you to have good media reputation.
And if you already have media contacts, make sure to ask them to talk about you. If you have done your work correctly, things will be already halfway done.
Strong media relations are not the end of it, though your next step will be to create a pitch.
There are many guidelines for creating them, but this will depend on the kind of content you are promoting.
The critical question for any pitch is: why should I be interested in this content?
There is a lot more that can be said about content marketing and how to pull it off successfully.
However, the key is simple: provide content of value and share it effectively. This simple concept will allow you to stay focused on what matters and move closer to your goal.
When it comes to the difference between corporate branding and personal branding, it’s essential to look at both types of branding and which one it’s most effective for your company to develop your media reputation.
Building a personal brand has never been easy than it is today. The available tools allow you to create a website and develop your media reputation, so anyone with access to the internet can have an audience and position themselves as an expert.
It’s great to see that so many people are embracing their talent and also means that you can be a self-employed freelancer, independent contractor, and entrepreneur. The key to differentiating yourself from your competition is building a personal brand and have some media contacts.
Now, you have to decide which type of brand you want to create for your company. It is essential to know all the challenging subject, so let’s go through some benefits.
Benefits of building a personal brand
• Build your network
When you have a personal brand, it’s clear that you know who you are, what you do, and how you help others with your company, so it makes it easier for other people to see the value of your brand and connect with you.
• Trust and authority
Having a personal brand helps to build trust with your media contacts, and position you as an authority on the media relations that your company is involved.
• Get featured in media
Having a personal brand makes it easier for you to pitch and be found by media relations (online publications, magazines, television, radio, podcasts, etc.). With a good media reputation, all your audience will be involved with your company.
• Attract more clients
Building a personal brand helps you with your niche, that positions you as a perfect company and attract more of your ideal clients. When you’re positioned as an expert, it’s easier for people to refer clients to you.
• Premium pricing
Having a strong personal brand helps you to feature your products as premium. Without a brand, you become a commodity that competes on prices with other companies so will always be competitors that can beat your price.
• Create a lasting platform
your personal brand stays with you as you move from one venture to the next; for that reason, you may even start multiple businesses in different industries throughout your career.
your brand is who you are, what you do and who you do it for, so It’s like the promise that you have with your customers. If there’s one thing that’s key to developing and maintaining a strong brand, it’s this:
To establish a strong brand that consumers recognize, you have to continually revise the visual identity that you are looking for your brand. Once you got the look, the next step is to build a strong brand that consumers want.
Benefits of building a corporate brand
When you focus on corporate branding, you consider all the plans ins your mind for your business, so now your business is real, legal and a former corporation. When it comes to selecting your business’s name, you have to think about a variety of different things like:
- What costumers are you looking for
- What your company will offer to your costumers
- What people will know your business for
- How you want to stand out in a crowded market
Going through this process helps you to think about what you want people to know your business for and where you see it going. This vision will help you to watch your business in the news.
Also, corporate branding allows you to position the company exactly where you want to be on media relations. You can use many words as possible but make sure to find a few that adequately express what your business is offering.
This helps you to get your customer to understand what you are only hearing your name.
Another good thing about corporate brands is that it is a lot easier to sell than personal brands. If you can create a recognizable brand that’s an asset, then other people may be happy to pay for.
How do you develop a strong corporate brand?
For businesses who haven’t yet developed a corporate branding campaign, it can be challenging even to figure out where to start. It happens that companies feel like they don’t have the time or resources to ‘start over’ with their website, marketing materials or social media to make it all look brand.
What Branding Is Right for You?
With both choices you can have different advantages. You just have to consider which brand option is the best for you and your business.
Optimizing the customer experience is the best way to get new customers and the right way of fostering customer loyalty.
Customer loyalty is the key to build the perfect company because they will continue purchasing from you as loyal customers. You have to give great attention to retaining all your existing customers and make some new ones.
Marketing and customer service departments of many companies spend significant resources on customer loyalty because it’s all about what the seller can offer customers in terms of featuring your products, and making money-saving deals and regular price discounts.
Customer retention refers to a company’s ability to retain its customers over a specific period. In other words, ‘to keep them’ as much as you can, because getting new customers is much more expensive than retaining existing ones.
Not only do loyal customers help sales, but they are also more likely to buy high-margin supplemental goods and services because they know exactly what they want.
Engagement is the commitment that creates a brand for its customers in the digital world. It is vital for a brand to have the responsibility, follow-up, and interaction with customers so you can foster customer loyalty towards your brand.
Apply Intelligent Customer Engagement
Good customer experience is valuable for the income of any company. For this reason, it is essential to keep each of your clients at the margin of your company.
Many companies are applying an engagement of real-time to their clients so that each of the clients can obtain good quality individual care.
Messenger is the most popular customer service channel for companies, but there are also tools like Drift, which allow companies to talk to their customers while they browse their website.
These channels are the perfect means to gather all the information you need about your customers. The idea is to obtain their data so customers can understand your company better with future interactions.
The most important thing is to have an excellent customer service team to interpret the information generated by the customer.
Another way to encourage customers to share their thoughts is to schedule emails with surveys to help deepen their problems, needs, and challenges. With this, you can fully understand what they like or do not like about your products.
As a result, it helps to improve the incorporation process, and you can turn your disgruntled customers into happy customers so that they will always be your customers.
In addition to having an exceptional commitment to customers, as a company, you should encourage them to share their opinions by including a customer satisfaction survey.
How to apply intelligent customer engagement?
- Ask the customer his thoughts without changing his own opinion. The idea is to obtain their advice, without influence.
Create questions that help you with the client. An example of this could be something as simple as “What do you think we could do better?”
- Use simple language to help you get information about a specific topic. For example, “How would you improve the effectiveness ofyourcompany?”
This will make the client think that his opinion is essential for the growth of your company.
- Each of the surveys carried out must address an area in which the client has experience. The objective is to obtain information about what you can change.
Keep these aspects in mind when customizing your customer survey with questions about your brand and products.
Is branding for small companies or large companies?
People always think that branding is only for large companies. However, in the world of small businesses, every dollar counts and every mistake is felt in a profound, immediate way and, often, it damages all the progress in the company.
What are the most important things when we are creating a brand for a small business?
- The most important thing is to have a unique brand to represent your company. If you have any questions about your brand, this will make your business do not work, big or small.
A potent dose of passion will help you overcome any difficulty in the way of creating a good brand.
- Keep your thoughts completely clear. Having your mind occupied with other less important matters is not a smart business strategy.
A bright and agile mind tends to put all kinds of problems ahead of you.
- You have to know which advertiser to direct your brand. Everything is fine if you think you have a particular product/service to offer, but if no one else cares about you, your effort will not help.
Before you start thinking about creating a brand for small or large companies, make sure that real people are anxious about what you are offering.
What are some of the biggest mistakes small businesses make when experimenting with the brand on their own?
- Most small businesses claim to be something they can not offer. The idea is to generate confidence to your customers, for which you must ideally have your own thoughts without any deception.
Speak with your own voice and be authentic, real and congruent.
- Always keep in mind the originality before any brand. You can not copy ideas that are already in the market because that will make your company end up being a failure.
Always look for creativity and an exceptional commitment to your customers.
- Be aware of everything that surrounds your brand, since not being attentive can be a total failure. Keep your brand under surveillance, so that everything works correctly 24/7.
- Never give up and always have an idea at hand when you go to create your own brand, either for a large or small company.
The idea is to make your customers believe that you are the best company with a great brand, so you should always have fresh ideas.
You can have a fantastic website and great content of value to offer to your target audience.
But if you do not take it to the next step, you are misusing your potential.
To truly see results for your brand, you have to be noticed by many people –ideally, people who are interested in companies similar to yours– in a short time. And the best way to do that is to get featured in significant publications.
This is precisely what PR Marketing takes care of. When you offer ideas and topics for journalists to use, their articles will be a huge source of publicity for your business.
The benefits are many, as well as huge. Some of these are:
- Increasing the credibility of your company and its story.
- Increasing the reach of your brand (reaching a new audience).
- SEO and link building purposes.
Some companies prefer to outsource a specialized company for outreaching journalists, since most of them known beforehand people from the communication industry.
However, it is entirely possible to achieve your goal –getting featured in large publications– without outsourcing the job or having to buy Forbes link, which offers only one benefit: link building purposes.
This is because you need to make sure the right people read your article, and for that, you have to choose carefully who is going to publish it. Most journalists will not write about you if their audience is from a different niche.
By the end of this post, you will know:
- How can you find journalists in your industry?
- What tools can you use for finding journalists?
- How can you pick the best journalists for the topics you want to talk about?
- Why should you know the target audience of these journalists?
- Why do you need to understand the journalist’ favorite angle?
- Why is it essential to build a relation first?
- How can you build a relation?
- How can broken links help you?
- Which elements does your pitch needs?
- How to increase your chances of being featured?
- How to build your pitch?
- What is HARO platform?
- How to use HARO for getting featured?
You will also have a list of resources below for more in-depth information.
What is your goal?
Before you start writing emails to every single journalist you read about, you have to know the best method for reaching them and who should you talk to according to your objectives.
To clarify, when you outreach a journalist, the goal is to pitch news or content to reach some result.
This goal will be different according to the kind of exposure you want, but the most common objectives are:
- Get a slot for guest posting.
- Be included in an article.
- Make them write about your business (either directly or tangentially).
- Receive backlinks to your website.
The last point, specifically, can also be achieved through other methods as stated above. When you buy Entrepreneur link, for example, someone related to some journalists in the magazine will ask them for a relevant article.
You will get a real post, but there are plenty of things published in Forbes daily, so the article will probably get lost and only be useful for SEO if you do not choose carefully who is going to write it.
How to find the right journalist?
So you already know you cannot email everyone. But then, how do you know who should you write to?
There are some steps you must follow to find the most suited journalist or blogger for your pitch.
1. Research: find journalists
You have to monitor terms related to your industry and competitors. This will help you to find bloggers and journalists that are interested in your niche.
You can also look for writers in huge outlets. After all, your goal is to make them write about you without having to buy Entrepreneur link.
There are several ways to conduct your research. Some of these are:
- Start by finding publications (such as magazines or blogs) about your niche.
- Review the articles to find out the writers who specifically write about your related topics and keywords.
- Now, do a more specific search for your keyword or topics. You have to look out for journalists and bloggers who write about your topic in mass awareness publications.
- Make sure to create a list with all possible matches.
That list will be your starting point. Make sure you take note of their names, where do they publish and the specific topics they talk about.
Research with tools.
If you want to save time or cannot find enough writers through manual research, there are several tools you can use to help you. Some of them are:
JustReachOut.io – This platform is a specific PR Marketing tool with a database of journalists and bloggers that allows you to search for particular topics. It includes their email addresses and tips for emailing them (along with pre-installed email templates).
ANewsTip – This search engine allows you to look for a keyword or specific outlet, and gives you a list of all journalists who mentioned the keyboard recently or write for the said outlet. You will also see their phone number, email address, and Twitter profile.
Mention – You can use this tool to track your company’s name, competitors or keywords. It has powerful filters only to show relevant information and will let you find easily people and outlets writing about the industry.
In the list of resources, you can check a list with other tools.
2. Refine: understand their audience.
Once you have a comprehensive list of writers, you have to know three things about all of them:
- What kind of content do they produce?
- Whom do they write for (target audience)?
- Based on these two questions, what content are they interested in?
To answer these questions, you will have to read their articles and blogs about your subject, as well as checking their social media.
This will help you to know what content you should send when writing your pitch.
3. Build your specific media list.
You have to know who are you pitching for and what are you going to pitch if you want publicity. Another benefit is that journalists and influencers will be more inclined to listen to you out if you only make an offer to pitch when your content is valuable for them.
With the previously acquired information, you will have a powerful resource.
Define what type of content you are pitching.
Different authors will have different interests. However, according to research, most authors show a clear preference for certain types of content.
- High-quality articles (19%).
- Infographics (13%).
- Mixed-media projects (12%).
- Data visualization (11%).
- Quality visuals (11%).
- Quizzes, press releases or interactive projects (>5%).
Considering this, understand what content you have available and how can you format it.
When doing this, consider the journalist previous articles.
Develop different lead points.
Using your previous list, filter all the journalists who could be interested in sharing it with their readers.
Then, start creating unique lead points or “angles” that will make it relevant to each one of these journalists and their audience.
Some possible angles are:
- Exclusive research.
- Breaking news.
- Emotional stories.
- Content relevant to their audience.
- Interesting data.
- Trending/timely angles.
- Actionable advice.
- High arousal emotions.
4. Build a relationship with your chosen journalist.
According to researches, journalists are overwhelmed with pitches –receiving from 20 to even 100 or more per day! –, but only write one or two articles daily, in the best case, and could even write only one story per day.
This is critical because only a few of these articles are based on pitches, making the margin of acceptance small for regular journalists, and even smaller for writers of famous outlets such as the NYT.
However, you can achieve your goal of being featured –without having to buy Forbes link– if you establish a previous relationship with them. Most journalists consider they want to create a connection before pitching.
The closer you are to them and the more previous interactions you had before (ranging from reading their blogs from talking to them through email), the more chances you have.
So, how can you do this?
- Follow them on social media.
- Share their content –making sure to add relevant comments when doing so.
- Comment on their posts, either thanking them or adding data that complements their ideas.
You can give yourself a month to build said relation. Establish goals for how many blog posts will you comment, which social media will you follow and how many tweets are you going to share.
Halfway through the month, consider emailing them an idea or feedback based on their recent content.
Make sure you do not pitch yet since you are still building rapport. Once you are in their radar, it will be easier to make them feel interested in you once you ask for a pitch, since they already know you are sincerely interested in their content.
Check for broken links.
One of the worse enemies from all websites is broken links.
Each time someone clicks a link expecting to see a particular page and find a 404 error message, they are more likely to close the website.
Aside from making user experience unpleasant, broken links can damage the reputation of a website if it is “link rot” (full of broken links) and decrease their SEO.
Therefore, you can use them as your allies and help your chosen blogger or journalist to find them.
You can search on their posts, but make sure to check the list of exciting blogs they offer to their readers (if they do). Each time you find a broken link, take note of where you found it, where did it originally sent and the right URL to redirect.
Some tools you can use for this are:
- This is a Chrome plugin that looks for broken links and 404 errors.
- Once you find any broken page, you can use this tool to find other pages linking to it. You will probably find other websites from your niche, so consider emailing them too.
- Wayback Machine. You can see how a broken page looked before, which will help you to give them the right link (if there is any).
Once you have said data, send them an email to alert them there is a broken link in their site and the right link. If you found other broken links, mention you spotted other broken links and can send the list if they are interested.
Below, you can also request a link to your site as a relevant content –making sure beforehand it will be highly relevant to both its theme and target audience.
How to pitch correctly?
If your chosen journalist already knows who you are, and you know their target audience and what kind of subjects they touch in their publication, you are ready to pitch.
Before starting to write, consider these facts:
- Journalists prefer to collaborate over a set of ideas instead of receiving finished content.
- Journalists want exclusive content. If you can offer them original research, you will give them a great chance to receive pageviews without competitors.
- Pitch over email. Do not use social media or phone calls, but send personalized emails instead.
This is especially true for reporters from major outlets, so check and double check you are following these steps carefully if you do not want to buy Forbes link to get featured.
So, what should your pitch include?
Steps to a good pitch
- An interesting subject line.
This is the first thing they will see, so make sure it is attractive. You can be either straightforward with the subject or personalize it.
- Introduce yourself.
State your name, and explain why you are worth the person’s time. Make sure to let them know you are a credible resource as well. However, avoid taking more than one or two lines here.
- Define your relation.
Once you have told them who you are, explain what your relation to them is. Do you follow them on social media? Are you a reader of their blog?
If you did your previous work correctly, this step will be easier.
- State your intent.
Use only one sentence. Why are you writing to them?
- Explain your idea.
What is your intent about? Make sure these two don’t get muddled.
- Show them the value.
Now you have to answer the next question: why should they care? State it clearly. If possible, say what it means to their audience too.
- Make sure is short.
Stay under 100 words. Journalists will thank your brevity since they do not have time for long content. If you must write more, use 200 as your limit, and wait until they ask for details to tell more.
- Spellcheck your email.
Most journalists will delete an email with grammar or spelling errors, so make sure to correct all mistakes.
- Send the email early.
Morning hours are the best moment to send a pitch. Only a few journalists will prefer seeing it in the afternoon, and almost no one wants to be pitched in the evening.
Sticking your pitch to a journalist’s specific needs will increase your chances of getting noticed among the competition.
How to use HARO platform to outreach journalists?
Sometimes, we can have a good story but not a journalist to write to. Or sometimes, we have plenty of journalists, but they do not write for the outlet you are aiming for.
However, there is no need to forget about it or buy Entrepreneur link thanks to HARO platform.
According to their website description, HARO (Help A Reporter Out) “provides journalists with a robust database of sources for upcoming stories and daily opportunities for sources to secure valuable media coverage.”
This platform is used from reporters from top news outlets like ABC, CNN, INC, Forbes or Entrepreneur, among others.
Before it appeared, PR Marketing experts would pay to access journalists looking for sources. This platform changed the rules of the game and has allowed fair competition: anyone can be an expert.
However, since rules here are a bit different, you cannot establish a previous relationship with the journalist, so how can you take advantage of this platform and get publicity?
Understand the system.
This platform connects over 35,000 journalists and about half a million sources. This is done through three daily newsletters that arrive at 5:35 a.m., 12:35 p.m. and 5:35 p.m. (EST).
Each petition will come with the name of the author, the outlet where it will be published (unless it is an anonymous request), a topic and a couple of questions about the subject.
If you are interested in a petition, you can answer it while explaining why your expertise is relevant.
Answer as quickly as possible.
When a writer asks for expert tips, they are looking for good responses that arrive as soon as possible.
Because of tight deadlines, they are usually rushed, so if they find a good match in just 30 minutes, they will not wait for other answers even if they stated it is for a week from now.
The best way to be seen is to stay alert from HARO newsletter. You should also check HARO’S twitter feed since they share urgent queries when they appear.
And when answering, make sure you do not take longer than one hour or two to send your response.
Answer only when you meet the criteria.
It is not enough to be interested in the topic they are writing about.
The journalist can ask for specific details of whom are they looking for, and if you do not fit the bill, you are just going to waste both their times and yours.
You also need to consider if you are the perfect match. If both experience and information are lacking, you will not have a chance of being chosen.
Consider if the opportunity is suitable for your business.
You can be qualified for many queries, but you have to think if they qualify for you first.
You can save a lot of time if you make yourself a couple of critical questions before answering:
- Does it reach my target audience?
- How popular is the publication?
- Is there SEO value in the backlinks? You can use the Moz toolbar to evaluate the impact their link would have on your SEO profile.
Answer their specific questions.
Be as concrete as possible when answering. your response should be highly relevant and take just a few lines.
You can give a different point of view, but if your answer goes off-topic, do not send the pitch.
Before choosing you, journalists will look out for your information online. Make sure your website shows you are an industry leader.
Proofread before sending.
Either through email or HARO, journalists will not see anything with grammatical errors or spelling mistakes. If possible, use a grammar checking tool before like Grammarly to make sure there are no errors.
Offer a different response.
You have to stand out from the other responses, so when answering, make sure you grab their attention.
The easiest way to do this is by focusing on their needs and audience, instead of making it about you.
Be accurate and honest.
This platform is successful because it provides reliable sources for journalists. So if you want them to use your information, you have to be completely accurate. It is possible they even quote your submission.
Failing to do this could even get you banned.
Sometimes, journalists find out they are near their deadline and do not have time to see all the pitches. So consider to follow-up from your original pitch before the deadline, since you will probably stand out from other sources.
Social media is one of the most effective tools to market your brand and make come up with your media contacts. When social media branding is done correctly, it will help you connect to your target on major social platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Social media branding is all about consistently using the right methods to connect correctly with your target audience on social media platforms. The purpose is to let the power of social media branding build a significant customer experience so they can not only stay with you but also buy all your products.
Social media branding is a priority for most brands that want to generate long-term business. It is also about defining what you want to do and at the same time attract prospects that are likely to turn into customers.
When you get social branding right, the rest of the sales process becomes more efficient, and you give to your customers a reason to trust you.
Social Media Branding Myths to Avoid
It is essential to get favorable results from your social media efforts, but you also need to know that there are some points that you have to avoid to have positive results.
Myth # 1: Social Media Can Make your Brand Popular Overnight
Most of the companies that are in social media only focus on getting viral. We know that in that way we can get many people who may likeyourcontent, but this will not always happen.
Depending on viral content, it will make your brand not only fall at some point in the process, but it also doesn’t ensure the promotion of your social media. The best thing is that you try to build a real interaction with your audience to obtain better results in social media.
Don’t think about getting fast results; instead, know and understand what makes your branding work and take the time to build a better brand for your customers.
Myth # 2: Being On Everything Is Crucial For Social Media Branding
The important thing is to use your time and social media knowingly so that you ensure a good response from your followers. We can’t deny that it may be tempting to be active on every primary social media website out there, but this may be against you.
Because each social media is different and they have their own way of being. If you put all your effort into one, it doesn’t mean that others need the same.
You must know how to address each person so that people can be interested in the development of your brand. The point is that the brand in social media requires time and work, which we must know how to handle and we don’t want to spend it on efforts that will not work later.
Myth # 3: Hundreds of Thousands of Followers Are Needed To Develop The Brand Through Social Media
Finding success with social media branding starts with your focus and we all know that the creation of a broad audience in social media has its benefits, but it is not necessary to have thousands of followers to increase the recognition of your brand. As a company, the objective you need is to create a better connection with your customers and prospects of success.
Quality is better than quantity. There is no doubt that having more followers is an advantage for your business, but without thousands of followers, they can recognize and like your brand.
Myth # 4: The social media brand is “Set and Forget”
This is far from the truth because one of the essential things in social media is the activity. If you do not interact, this will directly affect the way people see your brand.
Must be active in social media to show the professional side of your branding. The important thing is that people see you as a professional brand that cares about details in every possible way.
Creating a social media plan
No matter what business you are in, you should keep in mind that your followers will only be interested in the personality of your brand and what you will share with them. When someone regularly purchases Amazon products, what they are buying is the brand called Amazon because they know what it means and what they have.
The best thing you can do is offer the best possible product. With this, we will allow you to create a positive relationship between your customers and your brand.
Social media is a way to take the relationship with customers to a more real level, this way no matter your brand is big or small any consumer will be aware of your social media.
There are four key areas that you need to work on to improve your social media plan:
- your identity: It is essential to know your business to find the success of your brand in social media. The clearer you are about the integrity of your brand, the easier the right message that you want to provide to your audience.
- your audience: This is the most vital part of having an excellent social media. You need to understand and know your audience like the back of your hand.
If you want your audience to have everything they need, you should look at their problems, wants and needs. Identifying them is essential, for example, to which age group does your audience belong?
- your content: What you share in social media is your brand image, so it is essential to share good things. The content you share is what defines your marketing campaign in social media.
- your design: All visual elements make your brand unique. This will be the way your followers perceive your brand in social media.
You must know exactly what you are looking for in your social media. These steps are important:
Build a relationship with customers.
Now that you have your brand use it to carry out anything. your brand must have something that identifies and differentiates it from others, so it is essential to create a space in your social media explaining what your goals are as a brand, to build trust with your followers.
Focus on building strategic communication with customers. Talking, interacting, participating and taking care of each step of the brand make the difference.
Do not just show your products, maintain a relationship with followers so they can love your brand.
Publish relevant content
Do not publish just because you have a scheme. Keep social media posts relevant, meaningful and simple. Posting very often and without any goal in mind can make your followers get bored with your content.
Make it visual
People like to see new things so when the post includes more images than simple publications is perfect. Add infographics, photographs and other visual images to the post and take advantage of each of the social media that specialize in this type of content. For example, Instagram, Pinterest, and Tumblr.
How to succeed with an inbound marketing campaign
Inbound marketing tends to attract customers already curious about the content of your brand so that you will begin to build a relationship with them and guide them through their experience with you and your brand.
What steps do you need to take to create a successful inbound marketing campaign?
You must direct the attention of each of your customers to all the products of your brand and ensure you measure the success you obtain from these profits by effectively using the tools to connect with new customers and potential customers.
These steps will help you create a successful inbound marketing campaign:
Establish the goal of the Inbound Marketing Campaign
You must start defining each of your goals, so you can know what position your brand is in. If you don’t reach an objective, it is likely that when you carry out a marketing campaign, you will not succeed.
Succeed in each of your results makes strategic communication.
Define your audience and Buyer Personas
Now that you know what you want to achieve with your brand, you can define the audience for which your new marketing campaign is going.
Create a different campaign for your fixed customers and new customers. In this way, you will make your products have the attention of both customers, so you must adjust your campaign correctly.
Continue the conversation
Once you have established contact, be sure to continue the interaction. It is not enough to send an email.
Don’t scare them with the same strategic communication; try to communicate so that the client wants to share their concerns with your brand.
Measure your campaign
We are in a essential step of any inbound marketing campaign, but it is also one of the most misunderstood.
To determine if your campaign was successful, you need to use metrics. There are many methods that you can choose, even each of the social media have their own statistics meter, so you should make sure to measure the correct ones for your campaign.
If your goal is customer registrations, measuring website traffic will not tell you how well the campaign is working.
There are many smaller steps involved in executing a successful incoming marketing campaign. However, if you follow these broad steps, you will be well on your way to Inbound marketing success.
Active social listening
If we do not listen to whatyouraudience wants, we will not be able to connect with them. Just as inyourpersonal lives, it is also useful when we want to approachyourfollowers in social media.
Many times when it comes toyourclients, we try to guess, but not listen to what they think aboutyourbrand. We’re only making tactical moves, not strategic ones.
So, you should ask yourself these questions frequently:
- Who is your audience?
- How do they feel about not just your organization, but topics related to what you do?
- What do they really want and how can you connect with them more effectively?
- Which topics and trends are the customers passionate enough about to discuss online?
If these are questions you have asked before, activate social listening is for you.
What is active social listening?
Active social listening is an analysis referring to the conversations and trends that occur not only around your brand but also throughout the industry to which it is for.
The use of that knowledge can help you make better marketing decisions. The goal of active social listening is to help you understand what people think when they are mentioning your brand.
How to get set up for social media listening
Before digging into the subject, you should think about what you would like to hear about your brand in your social media.
For this, you can help specific keywords and important topics used by all social media to monitor your brand:
- your brand name and handles
- your product name (s), including common misspellings
- your competitors’ brand names, product names, and handles
- your slogan and those of your competitors
- Names of key people in your company and your competitors’ companies ( your CEO, spokesperson, etc.)
- Campaign names or keywords
- your branded hashtags and those of your competitors
- Unbranded hashtags related to your industry
PR Firms can cover everything, from advertising and interviews with key members to social media marketing and blogs.
As a client, your only goal is that PR Firms will cover all about your brand PR, so the name of your brand would be recognized at a general level to obtain potential customers for your business.
If you are seeking to hire PR Firm for the first time, you may need help to grow your business, since PR Firms integrate communications services to drive results for your brand PR.
Consider the impact digital marketing and social media strategies provide from a messaging and promotional standpoint. Not only can PR professionals place stories in influential publications, but they can also take their clients’ messages and amplify them direct to target audiences on various digital platforms.
Benefits of PR Firms
PR is excellent to create a connection with your audience and promote each of your projects to customers; this is an advantage of growing in the world of social media marketing. This way your brand is more likely to believe instead of just making a campaign ad without any benefit.
A public relations agency develops strategies for you to get publicity in each of the media. The idea is that public relations services develop specific tactics to increase your target audience’s brand awareness.
One of the most productive advantages is that they are responsible for controlling your coverage in the media. Once you send an idea of a great campaign, they have control over it.
However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t make decisions since your public relations agency should offer you media training, so you know how to control an interview and make the most of the media opportunities, they create for you.
Duration of coverage
One advantage of public relations agency is that you can send an idea of the story to several journalists who will then publish the story in different ways. This allows your target audience to view information differently in many media, which becomes very useful when you want to make your brand known.
PR provides information and stories of journalistic interest to a journalist so you can write an article about your products or your brand if you wish.
The advantage of obtaining an article written by a journalist is that it will be presented impartially so that it will get the opinion of a third party on the part of the journalist. This means that your target audience can see the credibility of your brand by an article and not by a paid advertisement that may not be the best option when it comes to credibility.
PR can be a potent tool because they can help you get a better opinion about your brand in a public way.
PR is responsible for transmitting a message to the audience which is interested in your brand, so your only goal is to reach your customers. Public relations professionals can also communicate their message to a different audience in a variety of channels, but the key is to reach a target audience that feels comfortable with their brand.
For example, the media can be an article on a website with many readers, a letter to local residents, an email to specific people, a blog post, a tweet, an article by a journalist and many other media. This means that public relations can be more effective than advertising because the information reaches all sites, where you have a target audience in a variety of media.
Should You Hire A PR Firm?
Hiring an agency is a smart decision only if you have all the precise objectives for your business and resources to support this option. Sometimes, several public relations agencies simply do enough to survive and lack enthusiasm for their work, so not many get this option.
Here are some questions to ask yourself about hiring a PR agency:
Questions to consider:
What are my business objectives?
It may sound obvious, but if you don’t know what the purpose of your business is, you are not in a position to contract PR services. The first thing you should do is to know your brand and your market place, to have an idea of where you want to go with your brand.
A good PR will need to know what your business objectives are so that in this way you can help design a communications plan that will serve your brand.
Do I need access to a larger network?
We know that to be a good brand, we must first be recognized, so your own networks and channels should form the basis of a community around your business. But when that network doesn’t reach its capacity to offer what your company needs: user acquisition, talent search, differentiation in a noisy market, a right agency could be the answer.
What you are paying in PR services is the ability to have a large network of relationships with customers who see your quality as a brand. In this way, you can expand in a way in which your brand will be the center of attention through a strategic experience on your products.
A right public relations agency is a brokerage between your brand and the media. PR understands each of the needs of your brand so that they can make a good media plan.
The job of the agency is to dedicate your time to work so that your brand, as well as your company, obtain the profits that are sought in the market. The benefit of great relationships is the ability to create ideas; Like having a reasonable control in the market to work correctly, so if the agency has strong links with the media, you can try a campaign idea to see if it works, before you get to waste time.
Does the agency really understand my business?
It is essential for your PR agency to understand what you want for your company. For this reason, you must know what the objective you want to reach for both parties to function correctly is. If you don’t have excellent communication regarding the goals of your brand, hiring a PR agency will not work if you don’t like the objectives that the agency wants for your brand or vice versa.
After you know exactly where you want to go with your brand, you can take into account obtaining PR services for your brand.
Do they have initiative for my business?
You should not have to tell your agency what press releases you should write or what social media post should create and launch. If this were the case, then you would be doing the work for them.
your PR agency must implement an effective public relations strategy for you and in this way grow your brand. Once your goals are decided, the agency should get up and running to begin meeting the needs of your business.
A public relations agency is there to take away the things that make the job more difficult, not to add them.
Advantages and disadvantages of using a PR agency
A public relations agency can be of great help to your company and doesn’t have to be an expensive PR firm. You have two choices when you come to PR services: do it yourself or hire a public relations agency.
- If you can afford it: you can earn good publicity by working with a reputable PR agency.
- Save time: an agency can allow you to concentrate on your daily operations and handle much of the work involved in launching an effective campaign.
- It can cost quite a bit: if you are a small brand, it might not be for you if you don’t have the money to invest in a costly public relations agency since you would lose more than what is available to you.
- Lose some control over your promotional efforts: if you are the type of person who likes to control every step of your brand, this may not be for you. Although the agency can do a great job to promote your business, you don’t need your client to be involved in the entire promotion process.
Even with these possible disadvantages, if you feel you don’t have the time and skills to organize a successful advertising campaign, you’d better seek out public relations services with professional advice to grope your public relations efforts.
Once you have decided to hire a public relations agency to manage your public relations, you must determine which agency will provide the best service for your brand.
Here are some essential services you should consider when looking for a PR Firm:
- Strategy Development
- Media Relations
- Content Marketing
- Social Media Marketing
- Events and Experiential Marketing
- Influencer Relations
- Brand PR
A retainer fees is an agreement between a company and a full-service marketing agency that includes a monthly or quarterly budget in exchange for a wide variety of services for your brand. Retainers tend to have more extended periods and are not project specific.
This allows an agency to become familiar with a brand and help execute long-term business objectives.
Retainer fees model.
When it comes to payment, each public relations agency has their own standards to handle it and their own prices.
Most of them, though, use the model of retainer fees.
The amount of money paid upfront ensures their commitment with the hiring company during a period of time –that usually ranges between 6 to 12 months, if not more.
When considering this type of payment and if it is worthy to take on this compromise, there are two things to consider:
- They are not assuring the outcome or final product
- It does not represent the total final cost of the services provided.
This meansyourexpenses could be greater than initially anticipated, and that results are not guaranteed. This, in a first look, seems like a very bad idea for hiring.
However, there are reasons why it has remained as one of the most popular methods of payment for public relations services.
We are going to break down most the recent misconceptions and explain the advantages and disadvantages of retainer fees so you can make the best choice.
What is a retainer fee?
When your company pays retainer fees, you are basically funding the initial expenses of the work relationship.
This work agreement can be defined with simple questions.
- What are your business goals?
- What do you want them to do?
- In which period of time will this be achieved?
- How will the work be handled by the PR firm?
Once everyone agrees with the conditions, you start paying a flat monthly amount during the duration of the contract.
The contract also allows to give an estimation of activity during the period, even if it goes higher or lower during some months. Therefore, the process of billing, budgeting and forecasting is easier for all members implied.
Therefore, you are basically dividing the entire cost of your asked PR services for the amount of time estimated. The reason why you pay beforehand is so they can handle any related expenses immediately.
How do retainer fees break down?
Once a month, you will receive a bill with the detailed explanation of every expense. The important things you have to see here are:
- Variable hourly billing.
Usually, a team will be assigned to your account. Each member has different hourly rates based on their expertise and individual experience. This can be break down in the next way:
- People doing most of the work (few years of experience) – lower hourly rate.
- Midmanagement work – medium hourly rate.
- Executive oversight – higher hourly rate.
Therefore, as your PR goals require more expertise, your retainer will be higher.
However, you will not pay more even if it exceeds the previously calculated amount, since these peaks are usually balanced in the year.
- Statement of expenses.
Aside from hourly rates, you will receive a statement for any expense such as photocopies, express mail or airline tickets. To keep this number in reasonable stakes, you can ask to approve any expenses above certain above.
You should also ask what expenses are included in your monthly bill.
Since you are working on a monthly basis instead of an hourly basis, you will probably receive a certain amount of discount. Usually, it is 5% for six months and 10% for an entire year.
When do they earn retainer fees?
If they receive the money before starting to work, it means they start deserving it once they start working. Therefore, we can define two related concepts.:
- Unearned retainer fees. This is the initial payment of money, and it is held in a retainer account before providing the service. If they are not used, they are returned to the client.
- Earned retainer fees. Once the services have been fully rendered or work has begun, the public relations agency is entitled to a portion of said retainer.
The retainer fees are usually used for paying the hourly charge out rates.
When making a contract, the company estimates an average of how many hours will their employees spend on that particular project and calculate according to it. Many companies do also offer a discount for longer contract periods.
This is also stated in the contract: who will be involved, what role do they perform and their specific hourly rates
Later, each employee must track how many hours do they spend in a project, and the company provides a clear breakdown of what happened during the month.
Some months have more work than average, while others have low movement. Usually, the total account will probably be accurate because of the average.
What happens when expectations are not met?
The key of this model is the trust among the two companies. After all, your monthly retainer fee is just an estimation of how many hours an agency expects their employees to spend on you.
But what happens when the goals are not reached in the defined timeline?
Since results were not guaranteed since the beginning, you cannot reclaim or ask for your money back.
However, would it be fair to do so if you could?
Reality is that, even if it seems like it, a PR agency cannot keep a payment if they have not done anything, and the hiring company could even receive refunds if the services ended up costing less.
Therefore, when the contract ends, you have already paid what you hired: a specific amount of hours of work towards a specific goal, not the reach of said objective.
Success is determined by more than their actions, and you need to consider that not a single PR firm who can guarantee a story in an independent media outlet.
They do not control the news agenda, and any story can be taken off the publication schedule if something bigger happens.
However, despite the results, there is always a huge amount of work associated to connecting a client with media outlets and placing their stories in publications.
So if you find out the contract has already expired and your goal was not reached, you have to renegotiate the cost and when they estimate it will be reached now.
As long as you are clear on what you want to achieve, they will be able to deliver you exactly that. The time, though, could vary and it is only an estimation.
How much does a PR company earn?
If you are still worried about paying more than what you are receiving, then you could find the next data useful.
According to a study made in 2012, a PRweek article shown that the average profit margin of the top 150 PR agencies was 17%.
Most agencies do consider, as well, that a desirable –and sustainable— profit margin ranges from 15% to 20%.
This means that almost your entire retainer fee is aimed to pay hourly rates, while the biggest earnings for them do appear when the job was done successfully –they succeed when you succeed.
Would it be better to hire for a project?
This will depend of your objectives for PressRoom services.
If you want a simple arrangement, you could find a benefit in establishing a hourly project for a shorter time.
However, if you want to be helped to achieve your goals, a consultancy has a better potential to turn into a long-term partnership. Therefore, a retainer arrangement would be more fitted.
Another benefit is that dailies rates for retainers are lower than a project, since the earnings are perceived by the PR agency at a slower rate.
How much does it cost hiring PR services?
For any PR agency, there are many factors involved on these. Some of these are:
- Years of experience.
- Quality and average frequency of press placements secured for clients.
- Strength of their connections in the industry.
- Amount of hour of works.
- Discount offered for monthly retainer clients.
- Their industry of specialization.
All of these factors will play a part. A newer public relations agency could be less expensive, but the lack of experience will not allow you to know if you are truly going to reach your goal –or come close to it.
In average, the startup companies charge their public relations services at lower prizes, ranging from $2,000 to $5,000 in the United States. Bigger firms, however, can start their retainers at $20,000 per month.
In order to help you evaluate prizes, we have included some quotes from CEOs of different companies of PR services.
“We have some clients that pay us $100,000 or so per year, some clients that pay us more than $100,000 per week and many clients that pay us $100,000 or so per month.” Mark Hass, President & CEO, Edelman United States.
“To properly scope a client program and assign the proper team support, we feel $15,000 – $17,500 per month is a reasonable starting point.” Anne Green, President & CEO, CooperKatz & Company, Inc.
“Our retainers range from $5,000 – $12,000 monthly, depending on the specific work parameters of an account, with the median being around $7,500/month.” Lloyd P. Trufelman, Founder & President, Trylon SMR.
“Our retainers range from $7,500 – $50,000 or so. Crisis costs are different and generally charged by the hour with a $20,000 minimum.” Ronn Torossian, Founder & President, 5WPR
“In 2000, $10,000 a month was my minimum monthly retainer, and it still is today. Yes, many pay considerably more, but in the booming tech scene, not every client wants to shell out $10,000 or can.” Marco Greenberg, Founder & President, Thunder11
“Our clients generally pay between $15,000 and $30,000 a month, depending on the workload.” Stu Loeser, Founder & President, Stu Loeser & Co.
“We have some clients that pay us $100,000 or so per year, some clients that pay us more than $100,000 per week and many clients that pay us $100,000 or so per month.”
As you can see, prizes can vary wildly. After all, there are PressRoom services both for small companies and for amazingly huge companies such as Disney.
How can you know if a company is good beforehand?
If you cannot afford paying the biggest companies and their retainers fees, you will have to look out for smaller firms who will probably not have such a loud story of successes.
However, you can help yourself by finding out businesses and brands who have successfully appeared in major outlets, and asking them which PR firm they hired.
More often than not, this simple question will end up in a recommendation if they are good, and a warning if they are not. You can look up for different companies, and then proceed to compare their costs, experience and the amount of successful press placements.
Once you have an approximate idea of their public relations service, you can consider if the retainer cost is worth paying.
Is it worth it hiring a PR company?
After seeing costs, you may wonder if hiring a PR firm is a good idea. Just like in all other questions, though, the answer will depend on your needs.
If you are barely starting, prices could be too high for now and you could handle said work in your own company. However, if you already have more years and your brand has certain recognition, it could be very well worth it.
Public relations services are better when you already have a certain presence in the market, but it is not mandatory. If you want to grow faster, a good strategy and a team helping you could be exactly what you need to skyrocket.
Another point to consider is your previous media reputation. If it is standard or even bad, you will probably not be able to solve it on your own, so your best option is to hire professionals who can erase the past –so to speak– and make you look better in front of your target audience.
If you decide to hire a company expert in PressRoom services, just remember the benefits of retainer fees and make sure everything is clearly stated from the beginning.
If they truly understand what you want to achieve, your possibilities of success will be a lot higher.
In theory, Pay-per-results model should be beneficial for clients and agencies. Clients pay to obtain excellent work from the agencies and thus be rewarded.
No matter how big or small your brand is, if you manage to get the right person for the SEO consultancy, you can get excellent results.
What is pay-per-results model?
In theory, pay-per-results model should be beneficial for clients and agencies. Clients pay to obtain excellent work from the agencies and thus be rewarded.
No matter how big or small your brand is, if you manage to get the right person for the SEO consultancy, you can get excellent results.
Does pay-per-results work?
If you want to have a marketing campaign that really offers the results you want by just paying, then this may be the service for you. In the first place, the agency must agree on the objectives, the plan, the responsibilities and then the value of the results based on the equivalent amount of advertising (either in any social media).
Once you have all the objectives in place, your campaign will begin, and you will share all the coverage achieved. They must measure the agreed prediction of advertising about the agreed value and then you will only be billed for the cost of the coverage you receive.
Opinions about pay-per-results.
Giles Peddy, SVP EMEA corporate development at PR agency LEWIS, says “It is a race to the bottom”:
“Payment by results is a model that is liked by cost-conscious start-ups that want some results. However, it more often than not drives the agency to short-term, tactical approaches to getting ‘numbers’. It does not mean the best results or advice as the agency has its eye on monthly billings. If an agency wants to play in that arena then so be it, but for me it’s low-value, tactical work and a race to the bottom. Ultimately, it comes down to what and how you measure effectiveness.
If it’s by output then sure, PBR will do the trick. But don’t expect long-term reputational change. If it’s tangible business outcomes and impact you want, then you should steer clear of PBR and look at other models such as retainer plus incentive”.
Keren Haynes, joint managing director of specialist broadcast PR agency Shout! Communications, says “It is too risky”:
“In my view only a really desperate agency would accept work on a purely pay-by-results basis. We’re talking PR here, not advertising; PR coverage is never a given and no one can predict the news agenda on any given day, therefore why should an agency take on all the risk? As former broadcast journalists we’re pretty accurate in predicting what coverage we’re likely to secure, but no one is privy to a big spontaneous story breaking.
“We offer guaranteed coverage, but this is generally quite conservative relative to the amount of coverage we generally secure. For example, we may guarantee a minimum of 10-12 opportunities for a radio day, but (story dependent) we average more like 18-20, sometimes more.yourguarantee is enough for a client to be reassured, but not so much that we are accepting a disproportionate level of risk.
“We offer a partial PBR service in that we will charge per-opportunity for any TV opportunities if this is done in conjunction with a radio day. We can do this because the basis of the campaign (the campaign idea, the content creation, the writing of press releases, etc.) is already largely covered by the radio day. Plus, we know from extensive experience what is going to work for television – or not. We cannot offer the same PBR service for TV because securing coverage on television is just too high risk.
“Obviously, all agencies need to be accountable for what they deliver, but it does seem, in hard times, that clients push harder for a PBR, agency-take-all-the-risk framework. Now come on guys, that’s just not fair!”