The Tools You Need in Your PR Toolkit
Make your DIY PR toolkit work for you.
When you first started your business, I bet you didn’t know you would have to be master of all trades. Running a business is more than just doing what you are good at; it’s about knowing your numbers, being organised and most importantly, knowing how to promote your business, so you get leads, leads, lead because they lead to sales, sales, sales. After all, isn’t that why we are in business; to make money?
There are several tools you need to include in your business toolbelt to get the job done, and one of those is the PR handy spanner.
This multi-use tool can help you not only get your stories in the media but build third party credibility (we like doing businesses with ones that have a good rep), develop ‘know, like and trust’ and be seen as the ‘expert’ in your field.
The really cool thing about modern PR is it is now so much more than just being in mainstream media.
With the growth of podcasts, YouTube channels, Facebook lives, guest blog and article spots and a plethora of online publications, now more than ever, if you learn how to manage your PR toolkit, you can be seen everywhere for very little spend.
There is no one better than you to do your PR because no one knows your business like you.
You could pay someone to do it for you – it would make life much easier. After all, you already have too many things on your plate.
BUT…there is no one else like you in your business. Your business is your baby. You have skin in the game. There is power in the enthusiasm and excitement you have about what you are doing.
If you are starting on your PR journey, there are some important tools you need to include in your marketing and PR toolkit to make the job easier.
A media contact list – this is your ‘rolodex’ of contacts in the media.
Your success lies in the ‘LIST’. Contacts can include bloggers, journalist, TV and radio producers, and editors. You can do it the hard way – go to each of your targeted media sites, look for contact details, or you can buy a targeted media list.
This is a one stop shop document you can send to journalists, podcasters, speaker agencies, events etc. to give a broad overview of who you are, what you do, achievements, and stats around your business. The idea is to make it easy for people to engage with you; a media kit does this.
There are a few ways you can set up alerts to keep on top of what is going on in your industry or area of expertise. Also, a great way to keep track of your media coverage. You can set up Google alerts which will send you an email alert when information is uploaded that matches your search terms. However, Google does miss things so you can check out media monitoring services (these services do charge).
SourceBottle & Media Connections.
These are such great tools to get access to journalists and other organisations actively looking for stories. You can also subscribe to the Weekly Rocket to get a stack of ops into your inbox.
Media release distribution platforms.
Being in business does mean many of us are doing many things at once and sending a media release does take time. Using Jules’ Brooke’s Handle Your Own PR or Media Connections, you can send your media releases through these portals. They both have an annual fee, but in terms of saving time, they’re gold.
If you want to become a prolific content writer and sharer, get organised. Calendar templates can help you plan all your PR and marketing activities. I use a PR calendar with my clients to map out media release topics and who to target. A calendar takes the pain away – spend a few hours planning your year, so you do not have to wrack your brain every week with new ideas.
Keep up to date with the latest news in your industry or field, manage the social media platforms you use, and have files and contact lists easily accessible by having the latest devices (tablets, smartphones, laptops).
There are so many options for Cloud storage that gives you access to all files, marketing materials and business-related info anywhere you are. It makes it easy to send and receive information, and you can access it wherever you are.
If you have images or media kits to send to journalists, you can just send the link, so you don’t clog up inboxes with big files.
PR is so often overlooked by most businesses.
In the age of authentic marketing, there is no better way to tell your story without seeming like you are selling. Telling your stories through PR helps build relationships and connections. People get to know you. PR lets you drop breadcrumbs across so many platforms … all leading back to you.
Remember, like all marketing, PR takes time to build that brand reputation. The only way your PR toolkit doesn’t work is if you give up.
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