No matter how well you deliver on all announcements, press conferences etc., your client will always rate you on how proactive you are and how well you perform when there are no announcements at all. In most client satisfaction surveys one thing that is prominent is that, clients feel their team is not proactive enough and the servicing team keeps wondering – what does that actually mean? So here are some good advices from masters of PR that are worth sharing:
Monitor the Monster: Yes, the media, which is ever growing in size, but in different forms. Traditional has overtaken by new, veterans are being replaced by junkies, niche and diversified have a new meaning in today’s landscape. Yet there some things we can do to know the monster better:
- Go beyond media lists, today reporters are covering new beats, which often change due to various factors, so constantly read and update your knowledge on who covers what
- Social tools such as RSS readers (Feedly and the new Pulse) can be very handy for you to surf through quickly on what’s moving in the sectors you have your clients.
- Set alerts – Google alerts, Twitter alerts (there are many free listening tools available) to be able to know what’s been spoken about your client on any platforms. Remember to refine those keywords as you go along as per the results and learn which terms brings you the best results
- Nothing beats reading newspapers daily – huddle up in a group every morning, so that you can share newspapers and benefit from each other by sharing what’s printed in every newspaper – this helps you identify client coverage, new journalists, story pegs, advisories that you can send to your clients, new columns etc.
- Read everything that will help you to understand your client’s business better. There is no substitute to this, if you do not understand your client’s business then you can never be proactive.
Thinking: Something that we never get time to do, but without thinking, ideas won’t just appear and start dancing in front of you.
- Think, is there is something that is not being discussed in the media, where your client can pitch in?
- Is there another viewpoint not represented?
- Did the reporter mention something in passing that could merit a story for your client?
- What messages your client competitors are sharing and how are they landing with the story? What makes their story unique?
- Maintain an idea bank with you, in a book or as a word document. The moment you come across a good idea, make of note in the idea bank. It is pointless searching for ideas just before drafting your plans
- Have a peaceful, isolated time everyday (atleast 15 minutes each day) to think on what more could you do to enhance client visibility
- Thinking through each relevant industry story will help you spot the rabbit holes that you may need to place your client perspective.
Pitching: Not just pitching but proactive pitching
- Write a concept note in a manner a reporter would approach a story, every concept note should have a headline that you wish to appear in the newspaper the next day
- Write keeping the newspaper and the journalist you would pitch in mind and customize the content accordingly, same size fit all can be never be applied here
- Don’t forget the target audience either, who are trying to reach, what you want to communicate, how will it benefit your client, should be clearly thought through
- Pitch a reporter that you think missed a topic or trends within a recent trend
- Stop industry trend, research more and create a concept note that a journalist will respect you for.
- Once you’ve established a relationship with a reporter, ask them what they’re working on and how you can help
I am sure even you also must have real gems that could benefit your industry peers, please feel free to share in the comments section of www.vikypedia.in