PR strategy: Why you need it and how to implement it

Too many business owners, large and small, have the task of implementing a marketing strategy. The endless ideas and tactics that go along with it can be daunting. But what many don’t consider is that a PR strategy can be just as powerful as a massive marketing plan. When done well, PR can help generate new business, new clients and help with the recruitment of new employees. Not to mention, growing public awareness of your brand.

You might be thinking, “I do marketing, why do I need to do PR? What’s the difference?” From the outside, they might look the same, and they are frequently used interchangeably, but both efforts are very different. A PR strategy aims to evaluate and grow the attitudes toward your brand with both your target audience and the public at large. PR tactics are also usually something you don’t “pay” for, such as a blog post or working with a reporter to get a story about your company in a publication, like a trade magazine or the local newspaper.

Here are three manageable ways to implementing a PR strategy for your business, no matter the size or budget.

Be present on social media

These days, most brands don’t have the option to choose if they want to be present on social media, but they can decide how present they want to be. Being active on social media is a great way to engage with your target audience. Brands can also listen to what customers are saying about you through comments, likes, and shares. It’s a great direct line of communication with your target audience, outside of actually talking to them in person.

To leverage the most out of your PR strategy on social media, it is important to treat copy across all platforms differently. Read our tips on social media copywriting.

Become a content machine

One of the most effective ways to get your company out there is to create your own content through a blog or vlog (video blog) if you feel comfortable in front of the camera. These content pieces allow you to position yourself as the expert in your field by sharing tips and insights, commenting on industry trends and providing advice to potential customers or clients on what you might do in a similar situation. Kinda like this blog post, amirite?!

In addition to promoting PR content on internally owned channels, there are countless ways to engage new viewers through Smart PR efforts. Don’t worry, we’ve written an article on that, too.

Engage with the community

Engaging in the community is often overlooked and undervalued. This could mean volunteering your time with a nonprofit to provide them with a service you offer, such as marketing or accounting for example or sponsoring a local event in the community. This is referred to as corporate social responsibility (CSR). People notice when brands and companies are intentional about getting involved with the communities they serve.

Leveraging PR for your business doesn’t have to be a huge undertaking to be successful. There are many options depending on the marketing and business goals you are working to achieve. But the great thing about PR strategy is that it is very scalable. There are tactics and strategies to fit any schedule and budget.

We’ve got lots of reasons why it is important for marketing pros to get involved with local organizations. Get them here.

More reasons to invest in PR strategy

Need more reasons to invest in PR? We’ve got four more for you to consider.

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in August 2017. It was updated in 2020 to reflect relevant changes trends related to PR strategy.

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