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Definitive guide to Public Relations

Press releasesThe dynamics of Public Relations is fast changing. The industry has often been found to be intimidating in its approach, especially for those who do not practice it. PR is no more cut and dry as it used to be in the past. In the current scenario, the domain is all about maintaining focus on the art and science of creating and promoting a favourable relationship with the public.

So, let’s start from the beginning. What is Public Relations all about? Marketing professionals swear by this strategic communication process that helps to develop mutually beneficial relations between business conglomerates and the audience base. The keyword for PR is ‘relationship’ as it influences the audiences to buy a particular product/service by developing interest and investment in a brand.

PR companies ensure their clients are featured in varied articles or blurbs in newspapers, magazines, TV programs, websites and more. This exposure is categorised under ‘earned’ or ‘free media’ coverage. In fact, one can’t define a regular day in the life of a PR associate in any India-based PR agency as his/her daily schedule is an amalgamation of tasks like writing emails, press releases, pitches, communicating with media, client monitoring and more.

In this post, we have emphasised on how the PR industry functions so that it serves as a go-to guide for those new to this profession.

  • Identify journalists to work with

A major part of a publicist’s job is to successfully find those media professionals/ journalists who would be interested in writing, talking and offering visibility to your customers. It means that a PR practitioner has to keep a close watch on all the varied types of publications, online or print both, finding editors and journalists along with organising lists so that finding genre-specific writers for clients isn’t a hassle.

  • Building a network

Networking is believed to be one of the most important factors for PR professionals. To ensure coverage of stories, maintain cordial relations with the media practitioners who would be eager to write about your clients. In fact, many top PR companies in India feel that the profession is too demanding and not suitable for introverts. Since PR professionals are consistently looking for new opportunities, proactiveness is crucial for PR.

PR companies are of the opinion that the interactions are primarily driven by appeal. When industry experts write about your clients, getting noticed won’t be a problem.

  • Press releases

Do you understand the actual significance of press releases? Although, writing press releases for the digital age has undergone major changes, it still plays a vital role when it comes to encapsulating key messages in your communication.

Basically, the press release is a statement shared with the media houses that displays relevant information about an event, service, product or a specific person.

  • Developing pitches (1)Developing pitches

Unlike press releases, a pitch is shorter in size and does not follow a formal tone. Understanding the domain is necessary for writing a pitch that works. Since a pitch can be sent via multiple mediums such as email, letter or impromptu conversation, get to the heart of the matter quickly so that readers do not lose interest.

Focus on the crux of the pitch because if the investors are not able to understand the idea right away, it is obvious that the clients won’t understand it either. In this regard, the elevator pitch can come in handy as it is concise and provides a planned ??. (In this regard, the elevator pitch can come in handy as it is concise and follows a planned approach). After all, an effective pitch sets the tone for one’s brand positioning strategy.

  • Provide newsworthy content

It is mandatory that PR practitioners understand what is worthy of news coverage. Hence, it is preferable that PR people come from a journalistic background. It is important for PR professionals to have the ability to find relevant information and newsworthy stories about their clients.

Since communication is an integral part of PR, trying to pitch a non-worthy story can leave a bad impression. Journalists won’t be keen to cover a story that the audiences won’t be interested in or already know about. Understanding what makes good news and when something is not newsworthy requires in-depth understanding about the domain.

Hence, PR professionals should understand what deserves to be news.

  • Keeping a close watch on the media coverage

One of the easiest ways to maintain cordial relations with clients is being able to display them where and when their business/brand/products were featured. So, PR practitioners need to monitor the Internet closely for any mentions of their customers.

Now, let us take a close look at some of the pros and cons of working in the field of PR. Although, opinions may vary but majority feel that PR has more pros as compared to cons.

Pros –

  • No two days are the same in the realm of Public Relations, so you will never have to worry about doing the same thing every day.
  • Apart from working with clients across varied industry domains, creativity rules Public Relations.
  • Interacting with people from different walks of life.
  • Encourages self-discipline, respect for deadlines and a systematic style of functioning

Cons –

  • Yes, it can be exciting to work on different things and interacting with different types of people, but on some days you will perform tasks that can be taxing and tedious as well.
  • Identifying ‘newsworthy’ stories is not an easy task.
  • Interacting with people all the time can be exhausting.
  • Long and unpredictable work hours.

Experts recommend internships for people who are keen to become a part of this domain as it helps to understand the nitty-gritties (lifestyle, functioning, pace etc.) of the industry.

Also Read: How to successfully master time management in the Public Relations Industry 

When it comes to businesses, to make people talk about you/ your business/brand/product, developing an efficient PR plan is necessary. From bolstering the user base to enhancing visibility, PR is the need of the hour for every business, irrespective of its size. In the remaining post, we will be throwing light on some of the crucial PR principles that will help you get noticed and create buzz.  While etching the PR strategy, keep the below-mentioned pointers in mind –

  • ‘Out-of-the-box’ approach

Traditional or conventional publicity strategies do not work anymore. Look for creative and out-of-the-box ways to get noticed by the crowd.

  • Target-driven publicity

If your publicity is not helping you meet the marketing targets, then it is a sheer waste of resources. While developing your brand positioning strategy, publicity plays a key role.

  • Publicity has no connections with big media contacts

Top PR companies in India have openly claimed that businesses need interesting ideas to stand out in the crowd and make the customers take notice of their brand.

Conclusion

Your PR efforts will start to gain pace, once emphasis is laid on developing mutually beneficial relationships instead of focussing on one-sided business ties. Just like investing in clients boosts ROI and sales, similarly building relations with journalists will ensure you are constantly being talked about for the right reasons. We recommend embracing the changing PR perspective and introducing the newer elements for guaranteed success.

Also Read: Top digital marketing strategy hacks every business can benefit from

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