Influential business mogul, John D. Rockefeller said it best, “Next to doing the right thing, the most important thing is to let people know you’re doing the right thing.” This is Public Relations.
Let us elaborate. No, public relations is not just “news” or writing press releases. While those elements are often included, with an ever changing media environment, public relations grows and adapts with technology and digital platforms whether that be writing a press release, social media post/ad, or even reputation management/damage control. Public relations is tied directly to an effective message and that message being sent through an effective medium. We are essentially professional communicators with the knowledge to be able to drive traffic to your platforms.
But you can’t measure the success of public relations? WRONG! With new digital tools and databases coming out and updating everyday, we can measure success based on SEO, metrics, and analytics. It’s both a numbers game as well as a reputation game.
Many of you already know, over the last year, the media has been heavily scrutinized as “fake news.” Credibility is key when it comes to earned media coverage. PR professionals understand the importance of building and growing relationships, which allows us to have a variety of platforms to utilize for business promotion. While self promotion is important, it’s not an endorsement from an unbiased credible source on a platform other than its own and public relations professionals provide just that — nothing fake about it!
From blogs and social media posts to bylines and press releases, public relations professionals handle a variety of written content. While the business is the head, PR is the neck directing which direction to look. All of the content needs to be heading in the same direction in order to bring success to the business. A message that’s uniform throughout all platforms helps the brand grow, become recognizable, and develop into something trustworthy.
Why PR is Critical for Your Brand in a Post-Pandemic World
While there is finally a light at the end of the tunnel when it comes to the COVID-19 pandemic, consumers are emerging with frayed nerves and heightened emotions. Feelings of uncertainty are likely to exist well through the end of 2021.
Times like these require empathetic and thoughtful brand communications. Buzz words like “killer” and “infectious” now have totally new connotations. Public relations experts can seamlessly adapt your brand’s existing material to cater to current sentiments and trends.
Moreover, unpredictable times make potential customers wary. They’re seeking to buy from trustworthy, ethical brands whose mission aligns with their own personal beliefs. Having a solid PR plan can help your business to have a clearly defined purpose and mission that appeals to new clients.
Building Trust Through Credibility
Nowadays, it seems like everyone with a social platform has turned into a journalist. Every nook and cranny of the internet is crammed with “news” that is not backed up by data or facts. In order for brands to cultivate rock-solid relationships with customers, they must establish themselves as credible, trustworthy companies.
As the old adage goes, “correlation doesn’t imply causation.” Just because a brand says that their eco-friendly products will help the environment doesn’t mean that it’s true. A restaurant could serve organically-sourced meals but still use plastic bags and straws.
The right public relations plan can position a brand as a reliable business by not just telling consumers why it’s trustworthy, but showing them. Whether that’s holding a press conference about a brand’s recent community involvement or backing up statements with solid statistics, a PR professional has the tools and techniques to build brand credibility.
Content is King, But the Right Media Channel is Queen
To foster positive relationships with new and existing customers, brands must be pushing out consistent content. However, quality trumps quantity when it comes to a business’s communication efforts. Your brand must deliver engaging and informative content that entices consumers and showcases how your products and services can make their lives better.
Your company must pay close attention to the big picture and be mindful of how each piece of content contributes to the overall narrative. Cohesive content will establish a brand’s consistency and credibility, elevating positive public perception. Whether it’s a uniform color scheme or a consistent voice, public relations professionals can ensure your content is coherent.
While consistent content is critical, utilizing the proper channels is just as important. Compelling content means nothing if it’s not getting in front of the right eyeballs. Whether you use social media or print publications, understanding how your target audience consumes their content is key.
Your brand’s PR strategies must glean great results. If you’re not reaping any reward from all your effort, what’s the point? However, the ROI of public relations isn’t simply determined by the number of leads or conversions a brand obtains. It’s measured by the public’s perception.
Establishing your brand as a transparent, credible business will cultivate public confidence and attract new customers despite their caution. PR professionals can use media tone analysis, surveys, and other tools to paint an intimate portrait of how the public views your company.
The Bottom Line
In a world of fake news and consumer uncertainty, generating a positive public perception through public relations is crucial for brand health. By boosting brand credibility and creating community through relevant content and the right media channels, your business can flourish.
Need assistance with your public relations efforts? Contact JASM Consulting today to see how we can help!