Are you looking for ways to get ahead of your competitors? Perhaps you are frustrated that they are regularly featured in the media and wonder why you haven’t been.
PR is a great tool for businesses to stand out from their competitors through telling their story, building their profile and reputation, and communicating with their target audience.
For start-ups and mid-sized companies, the struggle to make themselves heard and seen is real. Though advertisement helps, companies can leverage public and media relations to stand out in this crowd. PR is significantly more valuable as it is often more cost effective, builds credibility and trust
Here are our top ten tips on how to use PR to get ahead of your competitors.
1. Check out your competition!
This is so important! In order to stay ahead of your competition, you need to understand who your competitors are, what they are offering and what type of media coverage they are achieving. An effective method to keep up to date with your competition is to monitor their media and social media activities through Google Alerts or other media monitoring services. Google Alerts are free notifications that are sent to you when Google finds new results matching your keyword search terms. Include your competitors in your Google Alert keywords to receive regular updates on their activities. (When you set up Google Alerts make sure you do them for yourself as well.) A good PR consultancy can offer a more sophisticated monitoring process if you want to dig deeper.
2. Be an expert
One of the best ways to become renowned is to do your job and do it well. If you focus on your expertise and establish your company or its founders as experts in the field, it increases your chances of being invited to talk about your area of expertise or even write opinion editorials. Sharing your expertise not only establishes your reputation as an authority, it also increases your professional value.
3. Put pen to paper/computer
Writing articles (or getting a PR consultancy like us to draft them for you) is an excellent way to establish yourself as an expert in your field and give you an edge against your competition. Your articles must be relevant, engaging and valuable for your target audience. Articles can be pitched to media outlets, such as newspapers, magazines or blogs, and can result in media coverage for your business.
4. Be a great spokesperson
The media is always on the lookout for new story angles, expert opinions and advice. Providing commentary to the media is an excellent way to get your name and the business’ name in the media, and demonstrate your own expertise and knowledge in your topic area. This could be as simple as offering a response to an article or pitching for an interview. A quality PR consultancy will be able to help you target the right media outlets and find angles to pitch.
5. Speaking opportunities
Speaking at a conference or event is an excellent way to position yourself as an expert with your target audience, build your profile and credibility, and generate brand awareness. In today’s competitive business market, being positioned as an expert in your field can lead to new business opportunities and an increase in awareness, sales and new customers or clients.
6. Case studies
Case studies add weight to your story – they help describe a project, product, or client your business has worked with. Using case studies gives potential customers or clients an insight into how your business operates, and how they can benefit from what your business has to offer. People are more likely to choose a particular business over another when they can see previous results.
7. Social media
Social media platforms called your “owned channels” such as Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook offer a direct way to engage with current and potential customers. Read through our previous blogs on how to get the most out of social media. Most important is to encourage dialogue with your followers, which can be achieved by posting interesting content, sharing newsworthy stories about your industry, asking questions and responding to queries.
8. Be useful
Some of the most successful ways to widen the PR scope of your company is by being useful to your audience. Whether you choose to blog, create podcasts, make videos or vlogs, there’s always a better chance of directing traffic to your website if people find your content useful even if there’s just a vague connection to your product or service. To increase organic traffic to your website, the focus should be on publishing relevant and useful content regularly.
9. Stay fresh
To stay ahead of the competition and get noticed, you should refresh your brand every now and then. Offering something new to the customers, whether it is a new product, a process or adopting new technology to provide a good experience helps you stay relevant and also exciting to customers.
Corporate social responsibility is meant to inspire employees and corporates to become more socially conscious internally, and some individuals may feel that leveraging it for PR is not apt. However, research shows that consumers want companies to be more socially responsible and they are likely to move away from a company that follows irresponsible business practices. The important thing to remember is that CSR and leveraging it via good PR helps in strengthening the company’s positive image in the market.
The power of public relations ultimately lies in its ability to set a business apart. Through establishing credibility, enhancing reputation and building brand awareness, public relations can help your business get ahead of your competitors.
For more information on how to use PR to get ahead of your competitors, contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org