Top PR Trends for 2018: Part 2

If you’re like most busy marketers or entrepreneurs, you barely have time to get through your own to-do list, let alone research and stay on top of the latest PR trends that can help your brand increase its visibility and attract more customers.

We’re here to help.

Today, we’re continuing our two-part series on the top PR trends for 2018. My colleague Megan Custodio shared some incredibly valuable insight on the continued rise of influencer marketing and the evolution of the press release in her blog post last week. This week, we’re diving into two other big PR trends shaping the industry this year: the role of media coverage in social media and the rise of thought leadership.

 

The role of media coverage in social media

Social media has not only changed the way we interact with our favorite brands, friends, family and celebrities. It’s also drastically changing the way we get our news.

 

More Americans than ever are getting their news from social media. According to a Pew Research Center study, two-thirds of Americans get their news on social media.

 

We are already primed to consume our news and stay informed through stories our friends share on Facebook. If you aren’t constantly sharing your media coverage on social media – and positioning it in a way that provides tremendous value to your audience – you’re missing out on a big opportunity.

 

You can no longer simply post your media coverage on the news section of your website and hope a potential customer reads it. You must take your media coverage where your audience is – social media.

 

One important fact to remember about social media is this: people don’t spend time on social media to be “sold to.” They want to be entertained, connect with others, as well as find and share interesting news, blog posts, videos and pictures. Sharing your media coverage on your social media platforms provides you with a perfect opportunity to provide interesting, valuable news with your audience.

 

However, you must position your media coverage in a specific way to get the right type of engagement from your audience. This is where many brands miss the mark.

 

As the old adage goes, everyone’s favorite radio station is WIIFM (What’s In It For Me). You must apply the WIIFM principle to everything you create for your audience, and a social media post sharing one of your pieces of media coverage is no exception.

 

Instead of publishing a Facebook post that simply says, “We are in The Wall Street Journal! Click the link to read the story,” analyze this piece of media coverage from the WIIFM standpoint of the customer. Ask yourself what interesting ideas or knowledge your customers can gain from this story that will make their lives and/or business better.

 

Then, find a way to pique the interest of your audience with attention-grabbing copy that tells them exactly what they’ll learn and how it will help them if they read this story. For example, “Struggling to reach enough talented people to hire and grow your business? Learn why text interviews can help you screen more job candidates in a shorter amount of time than traditional phone screening interviews. Discover what our CEO Aman Brar has to say about this topic in The Wall Street Journal and learn how Canvas is helping employers improve their interview process with the first enterprise-grade text-based interviewing platform.”

 

The rise of thought leadership

With smaller staff sizes struggling to produce enough content to satisfy the needs of their readers, media outlets are more open than ever to receiving contributed articles by outside subject matter experts.

 

And who are those outside subject matter experts, you ask? They are our clients – and experts like you.

 

Right now, there is an unprecedented opportunity for brands to position their team members as trusted thought leaders in their field through contributed byline articles that demonstrate their expertise. While it may sound counterintuitive, one of the best ways to attract new business is to stop talking about your business.

 

Instead, find ways to share your experience and knowledge of the industry through contributed byline articles. Whether it’s sharing best practices, trends, or other educational topics that provide value to a media outlet’s readers, you can establish yourself as a trusted, knowledgeable expert within the field. Becoming a published author in a media outlet your ideal customers read gives you instant visibility and credibility.

 

There’s a fine art to pitching and securing this type of thought leadership media coverage, and at Dittoe PR, we help our clients share their expertise, get in front of their ideal customers and establish themselves as valued thought leaders within their industries.

 

Are you ready to take your company’s media coverage and social media to the next level in 2018? If so, let’s discuss how we can be of service to you. Click here to schedule a call or meeting with us today.

Four ways your brand can benefit from a media tour

While social media has made journalists more accessible than ever, and a well-crafted email pitch can secure phenomenal media coverage for your brand, there’s still no substitute for meeting face-to-face with a journalist to share your story.

Do you have a great company story, product or service for which you’ve struggled to get media coverage? Here are four reasons why a media tour might make sense for your brand:

You have a product or service to demo. Some products and services are more challenging to get attention in the media simply because they aren’t convenient for a journalist to try out for themselves. Many journalists are hesitant to tell their readers about a product or service unless they have experienced it firsthand. This means you can drastically improve your chances of obtaining media coverage by bringing the product or service to them, providing a brief demo and answering their questions. Not to mention, you’ll receive valuable feedback that you can incorporate into future versions of the product or service.

slack_for_ios_upload_720In-person meetings establish you as a trusted source for future stories. If you regularly produce research that journalists can use in future stories, or you are willing to go on the record to comment on industry news and trends, then an in-person meeting offers a great venue for you to explain the type of information you can provide to them that would appear in their stories. When these journalists need information from outside sources for their stories, you’ll be top of mind to them and asked to contribute your statistics or perspectives. Your company name will be cited in these stories, which only further establishes your credibility amongst your target audience.

Video enhances your brand’s story. If a picture says a thousand words, then a video is worth a million. For products or services that benefit from a demonstration as opposed to a still image, there’s no better place to be than filming an in-person studio interview with a media outlet that reaches your target audience. Video is one of the most popular storytelling formats around. In fact, the average U.S. adult spends more than 10 hours each week watching videos on digital devices.

Your enthusiasm for your company story, product or service is infectious….and way more effective to hear in person. There’s nothing that can match the power of your presence to capture the attention of journalists. Email pitches and social media outreaches can, in no way, convey the passion you have in your voice when you talk about your company, product or service. The right pitch, delivered in person, can effectively convince a journalist why you have a great story, product or service that their readers should know about.

We recently conducted a media tour in New York City for our client Redux, a device that brings liquid-damaged smartphones back to life. The meetings we scheduled have already resulted in coverage in Mashable and New York Magazine, and there are still several pieces of great media coverage to come. Could your brand benefit from a media tour? If so, let’s talk.

How to get media coverage for your next company event

Event planning is not for the faint of heart. But the added responsibility of inviting the media and securing press coverage for an event is enough to make even the most seasoned event planner’s stress level go off the charts.

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We’re here for you. And we’re sharing some of our secrets to success.

At any given moment, our agency is working tirelessly on behalf of our clients to invite journalists and online influencers to grand openings, launch parties, philanthropic donations and other company events that need to receive maximum exposure in the media and online. We’ve even donned superhero capes for the sake of pulling off a great event.

In other words, to say we know what works (and what doesn’t) to get the media to attend and cover your company event would be an understatement. Here are some words of wisdom from Dittoe PR Vice President and Partner Megan Custodio that will help you look like a hero the next time you need to drum up media coverage for your big day.

Do your homework before blindly sending invitations to the media. Identify which media outlets are most important to target, and then conduct research on their websites to see who’s recently covered a similar event. For example, if you’re opening a new restaurant, you can search for the names of restaurants that have recently opened in your area and see who reported on the news of their grand opening or VIP party. Once you’ve extended an invitation and they accept, though, your work doesn’t stop there.

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After they arrive at the event, greet them as soon as you can and offer to facilitate any interviews they may need, answer their questions, take them on a tour if the event necessitates it and thank them for coming.”

Targeted outreach and being an on-site resource are just two of the many keys to generating maximum media exposure for company events. From selecting the best time of the day and week to hold an event to choosing the right language to use in your media invitations, there are several other variables to consider when devising your media relations strategies and tactics for your next celebration.

Have a big event on the horizon for your company and want to make your life a lot easier? Ask us how we can make your next event a success. Here’s how we’ve recently helped Broken Beaker Distillery, Indiana Grown and TCC, the nation’s largest Verizon Premium Wireless Retailer, get major media attention for their recent initiatives.