|Small Business Guide - Small Business Resources
(Add to Favorites | View All Articles | Resource Directory)
PR - Cheaper than Advertising and may be more effective
Leverage The Power of Publicity For Your Small Business
Your business is only as good as the number of people who knows about it. For your venture to grow, you need to start spreading the word about your business. You may have the best products your field, but you cannot expect your business to breach the million-dollar mark in sales if only the people in your street know about it. Some entrepreneurs start doing promotions only when their businesses are up and running, while some market their business even before the products or services are fully launched.
There are two ways to get your business noticed: through paid advertising and through public relations. In advertising, you pay to have your message placed in a newspaper, radio or television spot, or your banners displayed in a Web site. In public relations, on the other hand, the article or show that features your story or business is not paid for. Rather, the writer may have come across your story or business through research or references. The writer or media person deems it worthy to mention you or your business to bolster his or her arguments.
Hence, publicity can oftentimes be more effective than advertising. Not only is it cost-effective (oftentimes you are paying for nothing), but also people are apt to remember an article about your business rather than advertising. People find a write-up or special feature about a business more credible and objective than a paid advertising. Publicity also reaches a wider audience: if you are lucky, the national media might even pick up your story.
Even in the online world, free exposure in the traditional media - television, radio or print - can be far more effective than other online marketing strategies. Nina Munk of urbanhound.com wrote in Fuse Magazine that her site saw a dramatic increase in traffic when NBC's Today show mentioned her site - much more than the links from other web sites or postings from message boards. As she wrote in the article, "Forget the power of the Internet: it's television that counts."
Since media has a "herd mentality," once a program features your business or your story, expect other publications and shows to pick it up and use you for their own stories. The mention of urbanhound.com at the Today show led to mentions in Newsday, Forbes and Ladies' Home Journal. Without paying a single cent, Munk's site was able to reach a wider audience that his business needs.
How do you attract the journalists to use your story? Here are five ways you can do to succeed in generating free publicity for your business.
1. Carefully target journalists. Since you are courting them to use your story, don't put them off by sending bulk emails to practically all the journalists you know, no matter how totally unrelated your story is to their beat. Identify the kinds of publication that may be interested in your story, and know who in the publication does your kind of stories. Make a list of the newspapers, TV and radio programs that would be appropriate outlets. Then identify the specific reporter or producer interested in your kind of story. If you want publicity for your bonsai business, for example, send your story pitch to a gardening publication or the home living editor of your local newspaper. Find the journalists (whether print, television or radio) who are most likely to be interested in your story. Send them personal emails or letters.
2. Invest time and energy contacting local newspapers, magazines, radio and TV stations. While avoiding becoming pushy, be persistent. Convince the journalists that you are an expert in your field or your story is newsworthy. In the event that their editorial calendar does not include a story such as yours, offer your help to them and let them know that you are available when they need your expertise. Journalists always want a good, well-researched story and will always use every resource available to them. Remember, though, that not everyone will be interested. If your story idea is turned down, try to ask why and use that information to bolster your next story pitch.
3. Make sure that you really have a good story to tell. Do not waste a reporter's time. Few journalists will care if you are hiring a temporary worker, or whether you bought a new modular furniture system. Make a list of story pitches that you can offer to your chosen media outlet. Brainstorm with your family, business partners or friends to help you come up with good stories about you and your business. Sometimes, what may be "normal" for us may be inspiring for other people.
4. Have a good angle. Journalists always look for fresh, provocative story ideas. Develop story angles that you yourself would want to read in a newspaper or watch on television. If you are a caterer, for example, one angle could be the increasing number of customers who wants catered food instead of going out to restaurants. If you are a home-based travel agent, you can pitch a story on the preferences of seniors when traveling abroad.
5. Make your pitch. Write down your story angle and send it to the journalist in a "pitch letter." Your letter may start with a question or interesting fact about your business that could interest your target media's audience. This is called your "hook." Then develop your story idea, stressing how it could benefit their audience. Make your sales pitch no longer than one page, and be sure to include your contact numbers.
About The Author
Isabel Isidro is the Managing Editor of PowerHomeBiz.com, a leading online resource on home business. For information on starting a small and home-based business, visit PowerHomeBiz.com at http://www.powerhomebiz.com
News provided by Yahoo! News and Google News
How the Target Breach Has Affected Small Business Data Security
Govt seeks review of small business taxes
Small Biz 101: What is Health Insurance? - Clarifying Health (blog)
SmallBiz-Small Talk - Times Record News
Small Biz in A Digital Age: Cross-Promoting - GoLocalProv
Could 2015 Be the Year of the Real-Time Small Biz Mobile Marketer? - Mobile Marketing Watch
The Wrap on Ag Plastic
While driving through Pennsylvania farmland, you have probably noticed an increased amount of white plastic bundles stacked in lines or piles along farm buildings or edges of farm fields. Sometimes referred to as "marshmallows" or "long white tubes", etc.
Over Disclosure Hurts Businesses
Many investors and business ethics professionals are calling for more transparency and regulators are calling for more disclosure. Yet in the franchising industry this can spell disaster indeed.
Mobile Car Washes and Shoe Policies
Mobile carwashing is hard work, it is tough on the your body and it pays to have athletic type shoes that do not get wet easily. Sometimes rapid pace car washing in parking lots can be a lot like playing basketball, except you are on a slippery and uneven surface.
Internships: Good for Everyone
Many job applicants want a job but often do not have the prerequisite experience, experience that they can only have by getting a job. Managers who take the chance and hire them may have to spend considerable time and effort training them, only to find the new recruits unsuitable or unhappy with the jobs and looking for employment elsewhere.
Cashing In Your Chips & Pastures New
No, I'm not talking about gambling or dairy cows - although business is often referred to as a gamble, I'm referring to your exit strategy. That time when you decide to 'play no more' and go off and practise your golf swing.
Beginning an Internship Program
CONSIDERATIONS FOR YOUR INTERN: Specify the number of hours the intern will be needed each week. Will specific hours be adhered to, or will the schedule be more flexible? Applicants want to know up front what they will be paid, if anything.
Get Approved for a Franchise
Deciding to start your own franchise is just one of the first steps to getting started. Buying a franchise is a lot like dating.
Looking for a New Office Chair?
Perhaps you are building a new home office or you are redoing the one you have. Or, maybe you are looking for an office chair to replace that broken down model sitting in your office.
How to Give Informative Talks
Why should you do informative talks to smaller groups?Informative talks to smaller groups allow you more intimacy with the audience. You will be able to more closely connect with their needs and their responses to your speech.
Image of Your Franchise Automotive Outlet is So Important
Image of your franchise automotive outlet is so important. Some say image is everything, well then if you buy a franchise you should be constantly thinking of image and cleanliness.
Canon City, Colorado - Good for Small Business
Canon City, Colorado is known for it's 6 Prisons; State and Federal, women's prison and juvenile. It is also home to the First Colorado Territorial Prison.
Competition Relations in Auto Detailing
There is significant competition in auto detailing and car washing. Even more between types of cleaning businesses, as each company attempts to expand into other services which are the mainstay of similar business models.
Solving the Late Paying Customer Blues
Nothing can drive a business down faster than customers who don't pay their bills as agreed. When you sell to customers on credit you are making an agreement with them.
How to Handle Rejection When You Start an Office Cleaning Business
"If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you."Thank goodness starting an office cleaning business isn't anything like skydiving! If you fall flat on your face, there's no chance that it's going to hurt that bad.
Want to Grow Your Business? Make an Irresistible Offer
My clients and many of my readers are small and home-based business owners, and one of the biggest struggles they face is getting new customers.Getting new customers is costly and requires a repeated effort.
Do Home Businesses Complicate Small Business Debt Collection Laws?
The home-based business market, sometimes called the SOHO (small-office/home-office) market, is booming. As more and more B2B businesses expand into these markets, they may find themselves walking a fine line between B2B and B2C.
Time to Sell your Restaurant? Some Advice from Restaurant Consultants, Inc.
As a specialist in getting restaurants open, it is surprising how many people ask, "How can I get out of my restaurant?" Reasons for this question vary greatly, from a death in the family to a merger with another firm, to the end of a lease.Selling your restaurant requires quality prior planning if you are going to realize the maximum value for the business.
Hire a Virtual Assistant for those tasks you don't have time for
Are you a home or small business owner and you're Webmaster, receptionist, and assistant all in one, but you've found that there isn't enough time in the day to complete all of these administrative tasks? A "Virtual Assistant" could be your answer.In today's tough economical times it's hard to think of hiring someone else to assist you, but it may be more cost effective than you think.
Serious About Writing A Business Plan... Start A Business Plan Library
Tap these treasures of ideas. The best money you can spend is money invested in your business plan education.
Outsourcing your PR may be more affordable than you think
Small businesses need Public Relations, possibly more than large corporations, to put them on the map. If you consider that time is money, however, you may find that handling your own public relations is a daunting task and not necessarily worth the monetary savings.
|Home | Site Map | Privacy Statement | More Articles|