This blog post was originally published on Judy Heminsley’s website Work From Home Wisdom (thanks Judy!)
The 2013 diaries lining the shops shelves this month may hold the key to your PR plans for the coming year. Don’t skip passed those ‘notable dates’ pages at the front – they could be your best friend when planning your PR for 2013…
If you want to raise the profile of your business, your plans will be ten times more effective if they’re underpinned by what’s going on in the wider world. It’s no trade secret that the media thrives on news (surprise!), but if you are unsure if you’ll have any actual news to release in 2013, here are some tips on how to remain topical and timely:
With the danger of sounding a little like the (much maligned) Pippa Middleton book of the same name, I’m going to give some very obvious sounding advice – advice that a surprising number of businesses fail to capitalise on… The media loves seasonal dates. Outside of the somewhat unpredictable news agenda, the steady trickle of common anniversaries and celebratory dates helps fill pages with news, tips and advice relevant to the season. So why not get in on the act and provide news and feature material from your business that’s relevant. Shopping editors filling product pages really will be searching for heart-covered, romantic gifts in February, and egg-cups and chocolates over Easter – so pull together your most relevant products and promote them in good time. It’s that simple.
An expert for all seasons
If you trade in knowledge, position yourself as an expert by releasing seasonal tips whether it be gardening advice during a summer heat wave, financial know-how for the end of the tax year, or holiday tips for families over the school break. Blog it; tweet it; offer to write a column in your local paper – the media loves an expert.
Moments in history
Beyond the annual dates, a bit more research can reveal additional news hooks – obscure dates, anniversaries and momentous occasions – to help give you the edge. It was no accident that everyone had something to say (or sell!) linked to the Olympics or The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012. But do make sure you keep it relevant (nothing irks a journalist more than a spurious PR link that is clearly about cashing in) – have something valuable, new and relevant to add to an occasion.
Keep it up!
Now there’s a whole new year ahead of you, make sure you plan in regular PR activity throughout the year. That doesn’t mean ‘spamming’ your contacts with a press release every week (only major organisations need release that much news – and that’s at a push), but, depending on the ‘rhythm’ of your own business plan in regular contact with your key press targets, regular blogging, and regular sharing on your social media platforms – and stick to it!