Public relations (PR) can be a powerful tool for any company that is trying to compete in industries that are dominated by large competitors. An effective PR campaign can elevate your company’s profile in the local business community, increase demand for your products and generate new leads for your business.
With small marketing budgets, however, PR can fall to the bottom of large to-do lists quickly. I’ve spent more than seven years helping executives gain media coverage for their businesses. My work has resulted in hundreds of media placements that include the New York Times, Forbes, “NPR: All Things Considered,” Psychology Today and the Chicago Tribune.
Developing a smart PR strategy doesn’t have to be complicated. Following these five steps can help you secure media coverage for your business:
- Get on leading industry blogs
Every business owner is an expert on something. Industry blogs are always looking for specialized experts to contribute high-quality guest posts to their sites. Providing guest posts builds credibility for your business and expands your audience. Identify relevant blogs that accept guest posts, research the topics they cover, review their posting guidelines and pitch yourself as a potential contributor.
- Offer your expertise to national media
Journalists at national media outlets seek highly specialized experts they can interview for new stories. Identify a handful of national media outlets where you would like to be featured, research the journalists who write relevant articles at those outlets and offer yourself as a subject matter expert for future stories.
- Pitch a story to local media
Local media outlets love featuring stories about entrepreneurs in their communities. This can be a huge opportunity to get your business in front of prospects, position yourself as an expert and secure client leads. Make a list of local media outlets, contact their lead editors and share your company’s story.
- Land a speaking engagement
Industry conferences want the best speakers for their events and are always on the hunt for new talent. Identify the relevant conferences and events in your industry and pitch yourself as a potential speaker. Each speaking engagement you secure is a new opportunity to grow your audience, foster relationships with potential business partners and build credibility for your personal brand.
- Subscribe to HARO
HARO, or Help a Reporter Out, is a great resource for business owners who have limited bandwidth. You can subscribe and get media opportunities delivered to your inbox twice a day. Journalists and leading bloggers often post in HARO when they’re looking for experts. Submit your business for a chance to be featured in national media.
How do you get media coverage for your business? Do you use PR in other ways? Let us know in the comments below.