Adding Public Relations to your Strategic Communications/Marketing mix Part 2 of 3

In the previous post, I offered some reasons why you should consider public relations as part of your marketing mix and some tips on selecting a PR professional. This post expands on those thoughts.

Ways to interact with the media

One of the very first steps in any good media relations campaign is identification of key media with whom you wish to develop a relationship. Target the publications that your prospective clients read. You probably don’t have the budget for a wide-ranging media campaign, so you need to have a good focus at the outset.

It is best to have a long-range time horizon and through the assistance of your public relations counsel, to develop a relationship as a “source.” Often this is done over a meal where a reporter has the opportunity to get to know you and ask questions to determine the areas where you may be useful to him/her. This is not about you placing a story, it is about establishing credibility with the reporter as: 1) someone knowledgeable about certain topics; 2) someone who can speak clearly and get to the point e.g. someone who is quotable: and 3) someone who is responsive to the needs and timetables of the media. To this end, your PR counsel and your office staff need to be very responsive to media requests. Do not let your assistant use the “He/she is in a meeting” with the media. Media often call with short deadlines, and unless you absolutely cannot be interrupted. If a reporter’s calls get “parked” and returned after the deadline, they will stop calling and go to someone who is more responsive.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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