Putting “Public” Back in Public Relations

LJF_FebBT.indd

When your public relations plan is considered, it’s important to recognize different facets of public relations – public speaking, press releases, social media and crisis management, to name a few. However, it is even more crucial to define your “public” before your company tries to relate to them. With your public in mind, your public relations strategy will yield greater results, because they will find the information you provide useful.

To have a complete profile of your public, you simply need to understand the following questions about your target market:

  • Who?:
    Who do you need to be targeting? Decide which demographics your ideal client falls within; if you already have your ideal clients, define their similarities, so you can gain more like them. Below is a list of several qualities to consider (don’t limit yourselves to only these, though):
    –  Age
    –  Gender
    –  Education level
    –  Field/business practice
    –  Cultural/ethnic background
  • What?:
    What are they interested in? What is their story? Given that you now have an idea of what type of business they own and what their background is, brainstorm what items of news likely appeal to them. If I target potential male clients with some form of post-graduate education that own B2B-focused businesses, the following news pieces would likely get their attention:
    –  A LinkedIn post for a business-related skill that can better them
    –  An article in their trade publication about what problem is solved by my company’s new product
    –  A presentation at a Chamber of Commerce on your personal insight into issues that affect the local market
  • When?:
    When do they read the media you are considering (if they read it at all)? Take our client from the previous example – do you think that client would be on Pinterest? Do you also think they will be likely to read something that is posted at midnight, or attend an event later in the evening? Probably not, so tailor when you send the info accordingly.
  • Where?:
    Where are they concentrated in? Suburbia? The big city? If you want to target the well-educated businessman, they could be concentrated in both geographic areas, which means you will need to tailor your message to specific issues affecting them.
  • Why?:
    Why do the do what they do/why are they motivated? Your messages need to tap into these factors. If you’re not apparently trying to help them fulfill their goals more effectively, the value in your PR efforts will be missed. Some  very common motivators are:
    –  Making more money
    –  Helping other people achieve success

Take the time to figure out who your public is and what makes them tick. Pick your media and your messages accordingly to leverage your public relations potential. Contact us if you would like some guidance through the process, or just need someone to implement the message.

You can get in touch through whichever means is best for you – like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and follow us on LinkedIn.

How to Use Social Media to Target Your Market

“Target your market” is a topic discussed quite often… but many business owners still do not understand what that actually means. To level the playing field, targeting your market is crucial to your business’ ability to turn interactions into profits.

Here are some examples of common misconceptions of what qualifies as a target market:
“Everyone who will buy my product”
“Men”
“Women”
“Soccer moms”

The problem with all of these perceived “target markets” is that they aren’t specific enough; you can’t target everyone. The gist of targeting is to be intentional with your efforts and understand where those efforts are being effective. Realistically, not everyone is going to want your product or service, so you are wasting time and money trying to cater to everyone.

Please note that just because someone is interested in your product or service and is outside of your target market doesn’t mean they can’t buy your product – it just means they are a statistical outlier, which is completely normal. Don’t let yourself falter from hitting the target because you fear alienating potential customers.

Now that we have a firm foundation on what not to do, we can discuss how to target your market by researching the market you already have. It’s surprisingly simple to do with fee tools like Facebook and Twitter.
Look at your customers’ interests.

  • Do most of your customers share a common interest and live in your area? That’s probably a good indication that you should try advertising to them. You’ll be likely to get more customers because people with those interests already like you. Look at your “likes” and “followers” – you can tell a lot from them about the support you have.

Look at demographics.

  • Predominant gender, age, socioeconomic status, cultural background, etc. can also tell you a lot about your customers. It allows you to see what may be important to them, since cultural backgrounds likely influence the person they are today. Look at these things to cater to what your current clients’ convictions are, and which will likely catch the attention of their friends through word of mouth.
  • For example: if you sell artisanal salad dressing, you might notice that most of your biggest fans are “foodies”. After doing some market research, you could probably tell that many foodies crave exceptional taste and often look for healthy as possible products, so if there are foodies that love your flavors, they may also love the fact that they can stay healthy using the product on a salad and as a marinade. Since one product satisfies both the need for health and the need for taste, sharing recipes that demonstrate these characteristics add an increased value to the brand and satisfy the demographic.

While these things may seem simple, they are effective, and free!

Are there any tips you have for finding the most loyal customers?

Source:
Inc.com