It took us all by surprise as we were plunged into election countdown, now we’re in the height of vote winning fever before the country goes to the polls and business leaders should sit up and take note of the politics of PR.
As politicians literally scramble to get their campaigns off the ground, it’s a lesson that your business PR campaign should always be ready for action, well prepared, planned and then executed to perfection.
Let’s face it, no-one wants to be a step behind their competitors, everyone wants to be in Theresa May’s position…top of the tree, ahead of the game and surprising your opposition.
As we begin to feel some cautious, positive changes in the North-east market everyone in business will be beginning to tentatively consider improving their brand awareness and you don’t want to be last to the party.
In the run up to the election, every party will be on the charm offensive and, sometimes the defensive, but in business, there’s no need to pose with a baby or throw your competitor under the bus. There’s nothing wrong with taking the gloves off but be sure your campaign to raise your brand is more perfectly manicured than bare knuckled.
Rather than winning votes, any PR campaign should be aimed at securing new clients and like the election campaign, you have to blow your own trumpet to get the results.
When it comes to choosing the best PR person for your business, it’s identical to an election with everyone trying to convince you they’re the best person for the job!
So, how do you separate the facts from the fiction and choose the best spin doctor for your business?
- Ensure they have vast skills and expertise in their trade and they’re not just doing their own PR job
- Don’t just listen to their self proclaimed PR puff, ask for evidence of successful client work
- Media contacts, aka the PR pro black book, is essential for any good communications expert. It’s who you know after all!
- Ensure they are well informed & up-to-date with industry news & competitors as they will be better placed to generate ideas to raise your profile
- Make sure they are passionate about what they do and have a genuine interest in building your business. They should want to become part of your team and not just be interested in their fee.
- They should be asking the right questions about your business goals and KPIs as any PR campaign should be aligned to help you deliver your goals
- Finally, make sure they have a personality! You have to work closely with this person and share your vision, so you must be able to trust them and get on well with them. You should be in for the long term not the short term.
As a business, you don’t have the deadline of a looming election and, unlike politicians, you shouldn’t just be focussing on raising your profile when you’re trying to beat the competition.
You can’t create a brand profile overnight, it should be an on-going strategic plan in action and if you are always focussed on building your reputation, you will always be that step ahead of your opposition and in a good position to react when you’re vying against them to secure a potential client’s vote of favour.
Don’t be like a politician and bring out your best side every few years, invest in your brand profile and let your qualities shine all the time to help secure on-going business victories and the leaders position in your field.