Even if you’re not currently using a PR company to handle your media engagement and message amplification, your internal marketing team will still be able to leverage positive news items for maximum effect using a few fairly simple approaches. Here’s a quick guide.
If you’ve managed to achieve a fairly strong news placement, perhaps by way of an executive quote in a magazine you’ve been coveting, or a local CSR initiative that was picked up by the local newspapers, what happens next? Is everything done and dusted once the article has been printed?
No – and you should take as much action possible to extend the lifespan of any period of positivity in terms of coverage.
How to EARN further coverage
First of all, socialize it, because this is the fastest, cheapest and easiest way to bring the story to the attention of a wider audience. It doesn’t matter whether the coverage was online only or in traditional print – share the links, and be sure to publicise any associated features, articles and videos you may have prepared in support (the news section of your own company’s web site is really useful here as an area of reference and collation). If the article appeared in print only, scan it and get it digitized.
Don’t forget also to make use of your company intranet, and share stories and positive achievements via internal email or across your own networks. If your staff share company news to their own networks, there is a nice degree of third party validation built into this too, so these posts will have high credibility and less of a ‘direct marketing’ feel. In fact, several studies by PR firms in both the US and Asia-Pacific have shown that earned media is considered the most trustworthy form of marketing (press coverage is not an endorsement, but further sharing of these items is).
In cases where your executive is quoted, make sure that when sharing you also tag the names of any other executives involved in setting up or conducting the interview for wider exposure (and some welcome recognition for those involved). This applies to customers too, so think about how you can work with suppliers and retail stakeholders who you can buddy up with for maximum social media appeal. Shout-outs on platforms like Instagram can work well for this (“Thank you to XX for the kind help with this event”) – the other party then returns the shout.
You may also consider in some way of incentivizing employees and customers who spread the word for you. Try reading further about incentive-sharing platforms like GaggleAMP or Influitive, as these make it possible to “game-ify” the process of sharing rather than just asking your staff to ‘please share’).
The PAID part of PESO
Sharing stuff across your social media may be free, but wide reach beyond your existing networks is not. Carefully consider how beneficial it may be to use boosted posts or paid shares with any influencers you are in contact with. The equation for effectively coming up with a yes or no answer to this is lies in how targeted your latest news is to a specific demographic, and how the use of paid sharing may reach this very specific target group. For general news with a non-specific possible audience, paid targeted posts are a fast way of setting fire to your money pointlessly.
You may also consider the recent news item to be a decent platform on which to create a shared digital marketing strategy using paid ads based on either impressions or clicks, which is beyond the scope of this short overview.
Creating little memorials here and there …
A Testimonials page on your web site is very effective here. It’s an entirely different thing for customers to see the great things that other people have been saying about you recently. You can also use the boilerplate of your press releases (the ‘About’ section attachment at the bottom that includes a company short summary and your contact info) to repost your recent positive news achievements.
Remember that if you use a digital distribution service for sending out press releases, this is a great way for creating hundreds of permanent or semi-permanent memorials on the net, which for a long time will function as SEO boosters. If your web site hosts a corporate blog, you can also use this to create further web permanence.