Natalie Trice has recently published ‘PR School: Your Time to Shine’ that aims to change the way bloggers and small business owners think of PR and their businesses. Here, she advises how to make PR work for you as an influencer.
Let’s get something straight from the start – PR isn’t just for celebrities and major players. It’s for anyone with a story to tell and a desire to grow their business.
I also want to say that PR is not free advertising – it comes at a cost. That could be your time, money, products or creative energy, but it is very powerful and this makes the investment worthwhile.
If we get to the very heart of PR, it’s what other people say about you and it really isn’t something to be scared of, it’s actually something to embrace.
How to understand PR
It’s easiest, I think, to frame it as a Personal Recommendation about who you are and what you do, and these recommendations can appear in newspapers and magazines, on podcasts, TV, and blogs as well as on social media feeds.
We can all talk about how great we are, if we have the nerve, but when someone else puts it out there, and it keeps happening, the impact can be massive.
Why to make time for PR
I know very well as the owner of two businesses, a charity founder, author, mother and wife, that fitting everything in can be hard. PR can just be another thing on the to do list.
The reality is, if you’re committed and put the time and effort in, PR can pay off!
By taking things step by step, doing something each day (yes, each day) you will start to build your profile, get your voice heard above the noise and smash your goals.
6 steps to creating your own PR plan
Step 1 – Who Are You Talking To?
At the heart of any business is your target audience, and when you think about PR, you need to think about those people. Now is the time to dig deep and really look at who your ideal clients are. Are you talking to mums who want to up their style game? Maybe you want to reach out to time-poor parents who are keen to make more meals from scratch, or it could be that it’s the attention of grandparents you want to get? Break it down, be really clear of who you are talking to and not only will this help with your PR, but it will make your business so much clearer as well.
Step 2 – Where Do You Want To Be Seen?
Right, you have your ideal client down on paper, now you need to work out where they hang out. I’m not talking about which gyms or coffee shops, but rather the media they consume and how they consume it? Do they read The Guardian, The Mail, Buzzfeed? Are they subscribers of Grazia and Stylist or is the local Families magazine more up their street? Is their favourite platform Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram or TikTok? Maybe they listen to podcasts or head to other blogs to get their kicks? Do your research and see where they are at. Then look, read and listen to see where you fit. Maybe there is a regular interview spot you could take in a magazine, or a product section where your fab cushions would be perfectly placed? It could be that a paper offers a great giveaway slot or that your favourite podcaster needs guests. What I’m saying is, know your target clients, know what media the consume and go one step beyond and know where you fit!
Step 3 – What’s on Your Media Vision Board?
As a very visual person, I find media vision boards are a great way to keep me and my clients on track. Get copies of magazines, pages from papers, print out blog posts, collect business cards, even get a pen and paper and write names on a page, and then put all of this somewhere you can see it every day. It’s a visual reminder of your media goals, just like positive affirmations on your fridge, and studies have shown that these daily reminders can help get you there faster.
Step 4 – What Do You Want to Achieve?
Driving people to your blog, increasing sales, launching a new book, fundraising for a charity, changing perceptions, or positioning yourself as an expert are all possible with PR – so decide what you are aiming for, and go for it.
Step 5 – Get Ready
Have product descriptions, a list of your services and an up-to-date biography prepared so that when you reply to requests or are asked for comments and quotes, you’re ready to go! You know from your blogging that good photos are key, so practise what you preach. Go for fresh, clear product images and use creative headshots. If you can, work with a pro to get something really special and smile!
Step 6 – Go, Go, Go
Just like going to the gym, giving up sugar and saving for your pension, PR is something you can put off, but if you want results, you need to start today. There is no question about it, putting yourself out there can be hard. We don’t want to look like we are showing off, but if you don’t do it, someone else will and it’ll be their face smiling back at you from the pages of Stella rather than yours!
Now get started!
I’m not saying that PR is easy, or that you will be an instant hit. But it is something we can all do!
PR is a marathon not a sprint, and if you want it to work for you, you have to be in it for the duration.
Don’t worry about what anyone else thinks.
Go your own way, and I promise you that if you want this to happen and apply yourself, 2020 really could be your time to shine.
Natalie Trice is a PR Director based in Devon who has worked with CEOs of international TV channels, finance directors of IT companies, entrepreneurs and more.
Today, Natalie teaches women the fundamentals of PR and gives them the skills and confidence to go out and talk to the press. With her ideas, contacts and cheerleading approach, her clients secure the column inches and airwaves that will help them to stand out from the crowd, and shine.
Cast Life – A Parent’s Guide to DDH was Natalie’s first book and sits alongside her charity, DDH UK, which supports thousands of people around the world dealing with hip dysplasia, a condition one of her sons has been treated for over the past decade.