|Small Business Guide - Small Business Resources
(Add to Favorites | View All Articles | Resource Directory)
Prioritize key audiences - which one is of immediate concern?
Definition of Security: Small Business Owner
Yes, that IS security when nobody can downsize you because you OWN that small business of yours! But preserving that special advantage is a never-ending job. In fact, do you know what needs to be preserved more than anything else?
Well, since they hold the future of your business in their hands, I believe that an outside group of people whose behaviors can effect your business' survival more than any other, deserves your rapt attention.
What I'd like you to conclude from that is, what your key target audiences think about you can take you down in a New York minute!
* customers displeased with your product or service don't come back
* prospects who don't know about you don't buy
* employees who believe you don't care about them lean on their oars
* when minority folks believe you discriminate, you have new problems
* and if community residents believe your business is a lousy place to work, you have hiring and retention problems.
Even though help is on the way, you can't work on everything at once, so prioritize those key audiences. That is, which external audience is of immediate concern?
The good news is that problems like those above just don't happen when you closely and regularly monitor what those "key publics" think about you. First, you find ways to interact with them.
Then probe what they think about you and the business. In what behaviors are they engaging? What about misunderstandings? Do you see any problems brewing?
When you take the trouble to stay in touch with those folks whose behaviors affect your business the most, you've taken an important first step towards preserving your business.
There's a real sequence here. Once you gather those facts from monitoring your key, target audience, it becomes obvious what your problem is and, thus, the public relations goal. For example, correct that misconception about your product; or reinforce a budding perception that you deliver superior service; or correct a suspicion that you don't put women in positions of responsibility.
With your goal in-hand, how are you going to achieve it? You need a strategy which, in public relations, only comes in three flavors: create opinion (perception) where none may exist; change existing opinion, or reinforce it.
So, you've set your public relations goal AND a very doable strategy. Now, what must your message say to implement that strategy? It must address the "fix" you decided upon when you set the goal. It must be clear, specific, persuasive and, above all, believable. As you write it, remain sensitive to what you are trying to do: change somebody's perception which almost always leads to the change in behavior you really want. Does your message meet this challenge?
Many would now find themselves with a great goal, a super strategy and a first class message, and nowhere to go.
But not you. Here, you select the "beasts of burden" you need to carry that message to the eyes and ears of those members of your key, target audience whom you need to reach and move to action.
And that means communications tactics. There are more available to you than we have time or space to list. Among them: community briefings, seminars, special events, news releases, speeches, brochures and personal contacts.
Is your work completed? Nope, because how will you track your progress? The answer is, Round 2 of the monitoring job. Interact with members of your prime outside audience all over again, carefully evaluating what you hear. If the goal was "correct a misconception," are you beginning to notice signs of that correction? Do those you talk to show, however little, a better understanding of the facts of the matter as represented in your message?
What's the bottom line? Behaviors, of course.
When your messages and communications tactics combine to alter a questionable perception held by members of your key, target audience, certain behaviors will soon follow. Among them, favorable mentions in the media and in individual speeches and lectures; increased patronage for your business; "corrected" perceptions by influential members of that important group of people, and many other similar signs that your message and your communications tactics have, indeed, "drawn blood."
Happily, what that adds up to is a successful public relations effort.
Please feel free to publish this article and resource box in your ezine, newsletter, offline publication or website. A copy would be appreciated at [email protected].
Robert A. Kelly � 2005.
Bob Kelly counsels, writes and speaks to business, non-profit and association managers about using the fundamental premise of public relations to achieve their operating objectives. He has been DPR, Pepsi-Cola Co.; AGM-PR, Texaco Inc.; VP-PR, Olin Corp.; VP-PR, Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co.; director of communications, U.S. Department of the Interior, and deputy assistant press secretary, The White House. He holds a bachelor of science degree from Columbia University, major in public relations.
Visit: http://www.prcommentary.com; [email protected]
News provided by Yahoo! News and Google News
'Small Business Basics Series' begins in March
Fla. lawmakers propose small biz sales tax holiday - First Coast News
GST burden killing small business
Mayor makes another vow to cut small-biz red tape - Crain's New York Business (blog)
Stratford Library offers seminar series for small business owners
Investors leading surge on small-biz loans - Insurance News Net
Judge tells American Express it can't bully small biz - Crain's New York Business
SurePayroll Small Business Scorecard(R): Small Businesses on the Hunt for New Hires
Recognizing Employees' Contributions Can Go a Long Way
Every employee would like to earn as high a salary as they can at their job but surprisingly it's not the number one motivating factor for them in the workplace. Human resource surveys indicate that wages are not even among the top five motivating factors for an employee.
Power Tools for Business
How do we keep track of our business deals?If you are only working with one or two deals, keeping track of them is a simple matter. However, most of us have far more than two deals on the plate and even more coming down the pipeline.
Small Business 101: Deadly Ignorance
American small business is again in transition. Many employees, now working from home, are no longer tied to a geographic office and the woes of commuting.
Temporary Staffing Agency: How to Start
The temporary staffing industry continues to expand, with yearly double-digit growth being commonplace. Companies find it convenient and cost-effective to work with a temporary staffing agency to fulfill unforeseen demand, fill short-term vacancies, and assist with changing workloads due to restructuring or mergers.
If you have to do everything yourself, you're not doing it right
The air in my client's office nearly crackled with her irritation. A scheduling snafu had left a client without important services.
Real World Accounting for Small Business Owners
If you're like me, you love accounting. It's so fascinating and such an ingenious system.
Small Business - A Thing Worth Doing Is Worth Doing Badly
A thing worth doing is worth doing badly. Yes I know that it should be 'well'.
Frodos Journey: What It Can Teach You About Marketing Your Small Business
Just recently, I took a break and caught "The Return of the King" at the movie theater. At the same time, I was pondering a topic for this article.
Collaborative Negotiating: A Win-Win Strategy
COLLABORATIVE NEGOTIATING:Collaborative negotiating is a win-win strategy that can focus the resources of the people involved in the process towards strengthening results, productivity, quality, creativity, and innovation in problem-solving. To use the collaborative approach to negotiating you will have to agree on the aim of negotiations.
An observation while returning home from a seminar: Getting away from the everyday allows room for analysis and new thoughts. Stimulation while away from the everyday energizes analytical and concept ional thinking.
Find Some Sample Payroll Check Stubs on the Net for Easy Reference
Starting a business? For many people, the bravery to venture out on your own is the ultimate dream, you're your own boss, you make your own time, and your dreams of making it big in the independent business lives on. But don't forget there are many responsibilities.
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.
Small Business Pricing Strategies
TACTIC #1 -- Never simply slash your prices, unless you're trying to empty obsolete inventory. Instead, try repackaging your prices so they're more affordable in the short-run so more prospects can afford them.
How to Integrate Yourself in Someone Elses Business
When do you need to get more involved with the day to day activities of your business partner?The best business relationship you can have is one where the client does not know whether you are a contractor or whether you are an employee. Working alongside the client, you are the one that offers solutions to problems.
The Triple A Way to Spark Your Companys Profits
Winning small and home based businesses today must continually shake things up to stay in the game. Whether it's adding new marketing twists on existing products and services or anticipating customer wants with compatible new items you can add to your product mix, hatching new ideas and concepts is vital to a profitable company.
How To Select a Franchise
Here are some useful tips on how to select a franchise. When selecting a franchise, carefully consider a number of factors, such as the demand for the products or services, likely competition, the franchisor's background, and the level of support you will receive because like any other investment, purchasing a franchise is a risk.
The Step Zero Effect
The key to organizational focus and helping those who need what you do is knowing, precisely, what you do well -- and what you don't do well.Once there was a semiconductor company in financial trouble.
Family Business and Conflicts
What is a Family Business? A family business is basically any business in which the majority of the ownership or control lies within a family. Involvement of members of family in a business can bring with it its own complexities because the line between the business system is sometimes separated by a thin line from the family system.
Is Your Business Property Safe and Secure?
Security Professionals provide the products and services necessary to create a safe and secure workplace for you and your employees. Products such as lever hardware, panic and exit devices, desk locks and high security key control systems, as well as security boxes and safes, can help you protect your business and property.
Bogus Investor and Consumer Complaints and Consumer Misrepresentation
Like most regulatory bodies in the United States, the Federal Trade Commission gets investor and consumer complaints. But how much of these are actually real? These agencies then act on such complaints and increase regulations.
|Home | Site Map | Privacy Statement | More Articles|