“Hold on a second”, you’re thinking. Why is a PR person, telling me I’m wasting my money on PR?
If you’re expecting that PR (traditionally defined as media coverage in newspaper, TV, radio and now online too), by itself, will convert to sales, you are wrong.
First of all – PR is rooted in brand awareness and profile raising. Not sales.
If your goal is to drive/increase sales – run an ad. An ad is also measurable, and you can tie the ROI to sales.
If you want credibility and 3rd party validation – run a PR campaign for a newsworthy story, and let the coverage tell everyone about you.
That all being said – the media industry has changed so much. Shrinking newsrooms and the onset of paid editorial, now define the media industry. You need to leverage the combination of earned (unpaid) and paid media.
Don’t look at paid editorial as a bad thing. It’s a fantastic opportunity to tell your story. Typically in working with paid editorial, a reporter or writer interviews you and writes the story. (I would never recommend that the client write the story – media know how to write a story, from a media perspective. Let them do their job).
There’s one more wrench I want to throw in your PR plan. Before you do any PR (either paid or unpaid), you must know your audience. Millennials aren’t reading the newspaper or watching the news hour. It’s a total waste of your time and money, if you’re targeting them with these outlets.
But if you’re targeting boomers – then carry on friends, hit up those broadsheets and 6pm news. It’s worth it’s weight in gold.