A well-designed public relations campaign can be an asset to any organization. But sometimes the PR team works hard to generate results, then moves on to the next thing. In order to truly optimize the public relations investment, the publicity placements should work as hard as we do.
Here are some ways to amplify those hard-earned media outcomes.
Promote earned media through paid and direct channels. A positive piece of earned media – an editorial feature or interview published in the editorial press – offers a degree of credibility that simply can’t be matched by company newsletters or sales materials. If its life can be prolonged, so can the impact. A terrific review, feature, or interview can be marketed affordably through social media channels – think sponsored Tweets, targeted Facebook ads, and even influential industry bloggers.
It’s even easier to drive promotion through direct channels like email marketing, where high-value earned media outcomes can be shared with an existing customer or prospect list, or even marketed to a new list of prospects.
Recycle visibility opportunities and material. A keynote speech at an industry conference is typically a strong opportunity for visibility, as well as a way to get in front of customers. But why stop there? Turn the speech into a slideshare and promote it through social channels. Extract the single greatest insight from the talk and offer it to a key media outlet as an interview, bylined article or white paper. Then, adapt it into a series of blog posts. These techniques help to build momentum while reinforcing relevant messages.
Blog to promote expertise. A company blog post is unlikely to be picked up by a major media outlet, unless the post contains breaking news and the company is a high-profile organization. But a post can still lead to a media story. By creating original content that conveys industry expertise – on the part of a C-level officer, or the brand overall, you can drive up search visibility and generate media inquiries for interviews and other stories. Niche or long-tail topics usually work best. I find that when I blog consistently about PR subtopics or industries I often receive inquiries for comment about those areas when news breaks.
Leverage media for more media. A great story will often elicit more coverage in media outlets that don’t compete directly with the original source. In particular, print and digital coverage often triggers broadcast interest, or a trade feature can “trickle up” to a broader business story. But rather than wait for this to happen organically, it’s best to approach the most influential outlets as quickly as possible. Sometimes the result is a snowball effect of positive coverage.
Go deeper with owned content. Long is the new short! That’s right, in spite of the popularity of shorter, “snackable” content, a thoughtful long-form piece on an influential platform like Medium or LinkedIn is an excellent way to build the kind of visibility and SEO results that attract media coverage.
Be a contributor. Of course you can create your own earned media coverage in a popular outlet. This can’t be a commercial message, and the competition is fierce at the highest levels, but it’s a great way to build credibility, expertise, and visibility all at once. One way to start is to approach a new media outlet, or one that has a niche following. One example: Check out some of the new red-hot digital publications we reviewed recently that reach millennials. Strike while they’re still on the way up and you might parlay a post into a regular contributor gig.