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Businesses all have their own identity—even if they are in the same industry or provide the same services. They all have different needs and priorities, so it is crucial to ask questions and evaluate business needs to understand their digital PR campaigns better.
Creating a solid campaign and strategy to improve their brand visibility and digital marketing metrics will help them reach a wider audience and to help them best serve their customers and clients.
That is the same with PR – while it may be easy for professionals to adhere to “safe” strategies that have worked for other businesses, that might not be the case for every business.
Here are six questions to consider when proceeding with a digital PR campaign.
1) WHO are your spokespeople?
Every successful PR campaign has a designated spokesperson that can provide expert insight on various topics. Ideally this person is a leader in the company as they can be recognized as an industry expert. Appointing a designated spokesperson is important because it provides the human voice behind a brand. Humanizing the brand is key because you are then able to connect your brand with your audience on a relational level.
2) WHAT are your key messages?
When you are creating a PR campaign, it is so important to know what your key message is. Your messaging includes what you want your brand to communicate, what your brand values, what your leaders specialize in, and what your business wants the target audience to know about you.
3) WHERE do you want to get featured?
It is always a good idea to know where you want your brand’s voice to land. Many outlets focus on your niche industry or are broader and still relate to your business. Knowing the types of outlets you want to appear in will help diversify your brand’s voice as it will reach a wider audience.
When looking for appropriate outlets, you should definitely strategize your best efforts to be published on dream outlets such as Forbes and Business Insider.
At the same time, you should never overlook smaller industry outlets or outlets you haven’t heard of without properly researching them. Look at their SEO metrics, website traffic, and how relevant each outlet is to your industry. All these aspects can contribute to your understanding of the website’s value, so be sure to research the website and use various analytical tools such as SEMRush or Majestic.
4) WHEN should this campaign happen?
Due to seasonality, each industry has times when they are busier and have more downtime. Therefore, businesses need to be strategic about the best time to launch each campaign and how that would be received.
The type of campaign strategy will also impact the timeline. For example, if a product or service launch requires paid and organic media coverage, there would need to be a few months in advance to plan for the campaign, allocate a budget, source appropriate contacts, strategically pitch, etc. Allowing time to plan, execute, and coordinate a PR campaign is crucial for high-quality outlets to pick up the story.
5) WHY is this campaign important for your business?
Each business might have a different objective for a PR campaign – some might want to focus on more general brand mentions, some might want to target specific industry outlets, and some might want to focus on generating backlinks to improve SEO.
Whatever the case may be, it is important to know why you want to have a PR campaign in the first place by aligning both your internal and external goals in order to know where the direction of the campaign is heading. Of course, this can change throughout your efforts, but it is always important to know why PR is important to you at that time and communicate that to whoever is responsible for your campaign. Your “why” can set you up for long-term success and get your business high-quality articles.
6) HOW can you achieve a successful campaign?
There is no cookie-cutter PR method to creating a successful campaign because it depends on so many factors like industry, time availability, budget, etc. Each industry has varying editorial outlets and audiences, affecting the guidelines, competitive nature, what editors are interested in publishing, etc. The time available is also crucial to your campaign due to the unpredictable nature of the industry. It’s important to be flexible with the timing and be able to allocate time to pursue PR opportunities or network with existing and new contacts.
In addition, allocating a budget for PR is crucial because many media outlets now require an editorial fee to share your piece of content with their readers. The fees will likely be higher for notable outlets; however, it does generate a higher readership and can direct this niche audience to your business. Be sure to do your research and be open to using your budget on editorial fees, as you will generate higher-quality placements.
Taking action on both organic and paid PR opportunities, such as responding to journalist queries, publishing guest blogs, sending out a press release, collaborating with influencers, etc. can go a long way for your PR campaign.
Most companies do not immediately look to PR as a strategy, but if you consider the long-term impact, it can greatly benefit toward the success of your marketing campaign.
Be sure to evaluate your current company landscape and how you want to grow your business by asking yourself these six questions. By doing so, you are able to identify your goals and find a strategy for your Digital PR campaign that will be suitable to communicate your message.
Be proactive, collaborate with your PR team, allocate time to review the campaign, and be open to trying new strategies to make this a long term success.