We were recently invited to speak to Harrogate District Chamber of Commerce members about how to harness the power of PR.

With good planning, a PR campaign can have a long-lasting impact on your brand’s reputation and image.

We have put together some ideas for how you can get the best out of your own PR to raise awareness for your brand, products and services.

An effective PR campaign is more than just a press release, but it’s an achievable starting point and – done right – you can attract positive media attention, boost sales and create a positive relationship between your company and your target audience.

Consumers are increasingly cynical and independent research has shown that PR is perceived as up to six times more credible than paid-for advertising.

Build your own PR campaign 

As a starting point:

• Make sure your website is up to date – it is the window to your business
• Have a library of good quality images – they help tell your story
• Use social media – maintain your presence regularly and always link to your website
• Read relevant media and be aware of topics being covered so you can engage in the conversation.

Make contact with your key local, regional, national or trade media

• Make journalists jobs easier – understand their target audience, provide high quality content and photos, only send relevant stories
• Establish your key contacts
• Follow journalists on social media to see what they are interested in – 50% of journalists use social to pick up on trending topics
• Surveys show journalists increasingly using LinkedIn and Instagram and intending to use Twitter and FB less. Tik Tok is gaining ground – journalists want to be where the audience is
• BUT – only 4% want a pitch on social and 19% would block

Writing a press release 

• PR isn’t advertising – news stories need an interesting angle
• Never let too many facts get in the way!
• Match the news with the target audience – who will be reading?
• Tell the story succinctly in the first paragraph – Who, How, What, Where, When? – and then elaborate
• Keep to a single page if possible
• Leave the headline to the end and keep it simple and not too clever!
• Cut and paste your story into an email rather than sending as an attachment

What makes a newsworthy story? 

• Product (new, innovative)
• Seasonality based (national marketing days)
• Issues based (legislation, environment, trends)
• Corporate (investment, expansion, anniversaries, awards)
• People based (appointments, promotions, achievements, charity fundraising – in or out of work)
• Contracts/orders (new contract wins, big, interesting, unusual, prestigious)
• Event news (show attendances, launches, themes)
• Photo and video opportunities/’stunts’ (send high-res, around 1MB) – good images are often key to coverage

A picture is worth a thousand words    
Images are key to all your PR activity – they help tell the story.
Send emailable versions of your best picture – not too high resolution which will block inboxes and win you few friends!

Cicada helps businesses and individuals raise their profile and boost their bottom line by articulating their key messages to their target audiences.
Through marketing comms strategies aligned with your business objectives,
We work across a range of sectors across the UK, from professional services and manufacturing to food and tourism.
if you would like to speak with us about a strategic PR campaign for your company, please contact:

Jane Chamberlain jane@cicada-comms.com
Clare Walker clare@cicada-comms.com

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