As publicists, we’ve all heard it: What EXACTLY is PR? Well, PR is, most simply put, the process of relating to your (product, service or business’s) publics. Recently, we answered a Forbes query on PR fundamentals that went un-chosen (eye-roll… we’re lookin’ at you, Forbes) so we decided to let no information go un-wasted and post it on the blog!
To continue answering the unanswered what-the-f-is-PR notion heard ‘round the world, we’re gonna lay out the groundwork for some PR Fundamentals (fancy way of saying we’re gonna bullet-point it) on the top 6 skills / areas of mastery someone needs to know in order to pull off a successful PR/integrated marketing campaign. This is how we do it (cue the 1995 Montell Jordan hit):
1) Timeliness — An example/case study of this one is via a marketing campaign we applied to a gun range client of Neon PR’s in Vegas. Everyone knows that thousands of people (10,000 per month to be exact) get married in Vegas, but, it’s now (timeliness) an unfortunate reality that the majority of people who get married, also get divorced. We translated that information by getting in front of the bandwagon and shifting the focus from Vegas as a bachelor/bachelorette party destination, to a divorce party destination, and applied it to a gun range – let’s allow people to bring in their wedding dresses and obliterate them with guns (blast the past… get it?), then go to a nightclub and be presented with a cake that says “Just Divorced” (yep, we partnered with a nightclub on this). Because of the campaign’s timeliness, we made national headlines here and here, for a few examples.
2) Uniqueness — An example to creating a unique campaign is that one time when a popular steakhouse in Vegas Neon PR also represents needed to come up with a Mother’s Day special (reporters everywhere reading this are probably rolling their eyes… blah blah, same holiday 5-course-meal-with-a-rose mumbo jumbo)…so if nothing else, Neon created a unique campaign just to catch the attention of journalists who get the same ol’ aforementioned dinner-and-a-rose press release… a campaign that pushed the envelope, but still fit this particular party steakhouse’s demographic… so we created a Mother’s Day MILF (Mother I’d Like to Filet mignon) Dinner — the campaign got a ton a press because of the kitschy play on the acronym— and social media followers shared away because of the hilarity that shook the ordinary Mother’s Day Dinner news up… see for yourselves here.
3) Slightly unrefined so more people can identify. Don’t be afraid to push, lick, and seal that envelope, get in people’s faces, and say what everyone else is thinking! It should be something to make readers go “What?!” or “No WAY!” — a common ground that any societal class can relate to is shock value. The more shocking, the more shareable. Someone write that down…
4) Content Value. is what you’re saying important, engaging and relatable to your demo(…graphic – PR slang)? Even if you’re targeting people with sleep apnea (also a previous client), people don’t want to take an embarrassing issue too seriously. The campaign to get your public’s attention should be educational and pique interest. So, we didn’t create a campaign targeting people who snore, who are often too embarrassed to seek help, we targeted their spouses who have to (try to) sleep next to them at night! Fix yo man’s snoring prob! Now THAT is valuable content with a valuable reach just one pillow over!
5) Engage with Demographic. Social media should be a support system and an added vehicle for delivering your message. It may not seem like it, but your reach to people becomes personal with only a click of a button. Offer a percentage off, early bird entry, hide some of your product or VIP passes in your town for your followers to find, etc. and offer the info exclusively to your social media followers, as they’ll likely be the first in line anyway to buy or use the product or service, and it’ll amplify word of mouth campaigns.
6) Drive it home. Get people back to your website. Make the call-to-action “visit our website for more information”. This is for the simple fact that your homepage will have more info on whatever it is you’re talking about, and the webpage might have other intriguing products or services. BAM.
Obviously, there is way more to PR (which requires hours of brainstorming, research, strategy, outreach, implementation, a little bit of gusto, etc) but these are some key points to keep your wheels spinnin’! Happy Public Relations-ing, y’all!