Every business owner dreams of getting enough publicity to make his or her brand the front runner in customers’ minds. However, there a few steps that a business must complete before hiring a professional (or outside agency) to make this dream come true.
1. Is your product or service ready?
There is only so much content that can be created before the physical product or service becomes available. Without media (photos, video demos) or customer testimonials, it is difficult to generate more than speculative publicity.
2. Your product or service is not ready yet, but have you been collecting customers’ information to keep them updated?
Public relations campaigns along with press coverage can drive traffic to a website and social media accounts, but it can turn into a failure if your product is unavailable for sale and the company fails to collect customer information. All the money spent in said campaigns and coverage will go to waste if no information appears on the website. Creating a newsletter or a form where people can leave their information is also crucial to encourage an audience to return.
3. Is it clear what makes your product or service stand out in the market?
If you don’t know what makes your product or service better than the competition, neither does the publicist. This should be defined and clear for the entire company, since it helps in defining your target audience and the media strategy he or she will create.
4. Do you have promotional material?
We live in a digital era that has turned promotion of products and services very visual. You need professional photos, videos, a branded website with a unique template and active social media accounts to make people aware of what you’re trying to sell and establish your credibility in the market.
5. Do you have a budget to hire a public relations professional or agency?
The cost of PR services depend on the type of services needed, the size of your business and its location. The cost for a startup company with less than 10 employees, even at the lower cost end of the spectrum, could still be considered high if your company hasn’t generated sales yet.
6. Do you have the time and patience?
PR campaigns require time. There is significant research that goes into its background which can make the entire process quite lengthy. Usually, PR professionals require at least three months to launch the campaign and even more time to start landing media coverage.