There are countless strategies that can help you when you are working in the online PR space. Here are five key tips:
1. Own the critical path
One of the biggest challenges we face in PR is that of a slow or unresponsive client. With all the good will and planning in the world, things can still fall down if someone misses a deadline or extra work is needed to get something done.
To take ownership of the critical path, identify all the things that could go wrong between ideation and outreach and make sure you have a good plan for all of them. Setting clear deadlines and managing tasks in one central place can really help.
2. Set clear goals and expectations
Another key challenge as PR continues to evolve in both the traditional and digital spaces is that of expectations - both setting them and meeting them.
It’s important that clear goals are agreed and documented from the outset of any client relationship and that means a full and detailed understanding of what the client needs and what the PR can realistically achieve.
For example, a client’s goal might be to ‘launch a new product’ but what does that mean in measurable terms? Is this about tracking coverage? Links? Ranking positions on Google? Traffic? Sales? Be sure to have expectations aligned at every step of the journey.
3. Collaborate with clients
Collaboration is the key to any successful relationship but nowhere is that more true than in PR!
We know that we have to earn our clients’ trust and the best way to do that is to check in regularly with them to ask what they’re up to, find out what they’re finding interesting in their industry and to run ideas by them.
Be confident in serving up a wide array of ideas to test the waters of the kinds of activities they might like, and those they’d prefer to avoid.
4. Keep it simple
Especially when it comes to presenting campaign ideas to clients, simplicity is best. If you can’t describe the idea in a sentence, it’s probably too complex.
That’s because your client needs to be able to understand it quickly, but also for journalists. If you think about the volume of emails journalists receive on a daily basis, the idea that they can fully absorb and digest a long, complex idea is pretty ludicrous.
That doesn’t mean you need to make your ideas less deep or align them less closely with topics that make a difference for their audience. Even the deepest ideas can be briefly described to get them approved by stakeholders and more likely to get the attention of journalists.
5. Zero relevance equals zero value
The biggest movement in digital PR in recent years - and one that’s picking up momentum every day - is the idea that relevance means more than volume. Simply put, it’s far better to put out the right message to the right audience than to get placed hundreds of times in irrelevant or poor quality publications.
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