Given the power, influence and diversity of the media, it's essential
for entrepreneurs to develop the skills that will generate recognition for
one's products or services. Here's my checklist of public relations
activities anyone can undertake to secure publicity:
Make Regular Contact.
All public relations should be undertaken on a
long-term basis. A single news release can get lost in the enormous
numbers received daily by news organizations. Be prepared to contact the
media on a monthly basis with newsworthy information.
Remember, Briefer is Better.
A letter-size news release can be quite
effective, but a legal-size length is okay, too. A strong, dramatic
headline, followed by a brief, lively "lead" paragraph is
essential. Always include the name and location of your business by the
second or third paragraph. End the release with a spokesperson and phone
number to contact. Always respond to or return media inquiries
Create a Fact Sheet.
When contacted by an editor or reporter, always be
prepared to offer an up-to-date, accurate, one-page "Fact Sheet"
on your business, its history, primary spokespersons, and other
credentials. Request their fax number and send it as soon as the inquiry
or interview is ended. (Releases sent by fax should be limited to
news-worthy stories that are tied to some event happening within the next
48 hours, or to sending follow-up information after a telephone
Contact TV Producers.
Don't overlook the power of an appearance on a
television talk or news program. Consider what information you can share
or demonstrate that would prove timely and useful, then contact producers
who welcome such ideas.
The secret to successful marketing is communicate, communicate,
communicate! Consider keeping both existing and potential customers
informed with a quarterly or monthly newsletter. It's a great way to
remind people of the products or services you provide. That way, you'll
keep them coming back to you, not your competition.