We live in a world where we are bombarded with messages from brands. From social media to advertising, from blogging to digital marketing. Sometimes it feels difficult to pass through the noise and find the information that you’re looking for.
Many businesses in Suffolk struggle to find their niche. They may struggle to identify their unique selling point. This can make it much harder for them to capture the public’s attention and raise their profile.
In a content marketing context, you may have much to talk about. But how often are you talking about industry or sector news that has previously been talked about? Are you jumping into existing conversations, or are you finding new ways to lead a whole new narrative?
At Gatekeeper Communications, our background as Suffolk PR experts means that we know how to find ways to start new business conversations. We can spot PR opportunities that align with your business priorities, your customers’ needs, and your wider sector. This helps you to stand out from the crowd. It also gives you a chance to talk about new topics that could be of interest to your audience.
Here are a few suggestions for how you can use public relations activities to spark new conversations and increase your profile amongst your target audience.
Public relations activity #1 – can you create your own research project?
Talking about existing information relating to your sector is great. But have you got a way of changing the conversation so that you are talking about something new?
We’ve previously worked with clients to create comprehensive research reports. We’ve used existing knowledge of a subject area and found a topic that we can talk about differently. Tailoring your subject knowledge to your specific audience is a great way of showing your expertise.
Case study: Sherwen Studios
For example, we worked with digital retail specialists, Sherwen Studios on their white paper, “Bricks and mortar stores vs. online retail. How to combine online and offline experiences to improve shopping for your customers.”
As part of the project, we conducted consumer research to find out what shoppers expect when shopping online or in-store. This allowed Sherwen Studios to create a detailed report that made some practical recommendations for retailers to use to improve their retail strategies. Not only was this creating an entirely new conversation, but it brilliantly showcased Sherwen Studios’ expertise. It also enabled them to have full ownership of their research statistics which they can discuss with potential clients. An added bonus? We’ve used ongoing public relations activities to continually promote the report and raise its profile.
Creating a research report doesn’t need to be complex.
It may seem overwhelming, but there are ways to conduct your own research, from independent consumer survey organisations to local business networking groups and even your own audience base. Once you have the data, it’s a question of communicating that information in a clear and concise way. You can then continually use that original source data through blogs, social media, and external public relations activities.
Public relations activity #2 – have you considered self-publishing your own magazine?
Like research projects, creating a self-published magazine is easier than ever. Design tools such as Canva can help you with the initial look and feel of a magazine or brochure. These are great tools that can help you before eventually working with a graphic designer. When you’re ready, you can self-publish your digital publication on sites such as Issuu. This can save you from paying expensive print costs.
Choosing to create a magazine can be an effective public relations activity because it can help you to find new ways to talk about subjects relating to your sector. For example, you could choose to publish interviews with internal staff members. You could talk about wider industry-related news or approach external businesses to contribute.
A magazine doesn’t have to be lengthy. Even just 4 or 8 pages can be enough to show that you have a deep understanding of your sector. You can use your final publication as a sales tool to show prospective clients. If you’re approaching third parties to contribute to your publication (perhaps through quotes, comments, or interviews), it’s also an opportunity to introduce yourself to people that you admire and build positive relationships in new ways.
Public relations activity #3 – can you convert your blogging plans into external press opportunities?
Do you have an existing content marketing strategy, or are you regularly updating your corporate blog? If so, how often do you re-read your content to see if there are any external press angles you could use?
Often a blog discussing the latest industry trends could be repositioned as a thought leadership article. Or a piece about a client win or staff achievement could be worth sending out to your local newspaper to gain PR exposure.
At Gatekeeper Communications, we believe that our PR background makes us effective copywriters. We can spot the news potential of blog topics. We make suggestions for how to create stories that would appeal to journalists and their readers. We also believe in making your content work as hard as possible. You’re spending time and money on your articles for your website, so you want to ensure that you are driving as much traffic and awareness to it as possible.