Home Articles Shoe designers, potion makers, and a love coach share their top PR...

Shoe designers, potion makers, and a love coach share their top PR secrets. (No, it’s nothing kinky.)

0

What have the makers of lotions and potions got in common with killer heels, cloth nappies and a love coach?

No, it’s not anything kinky. The common factor linking these businesses is that their owners all do their own PR and they do it successfully.

Doing your own PR is not exactly advanced calculus, but it helps to have some basic know-how about the media and publicity process.

According to Julie Morgan, founder of prguru.com.au, good books can certainly help, but sometimes it’s more comforting to hear what works from those who have rolled up their sleeves and done it themselves.

“When you’re starting out and doing your own PR, it often helps to have what you’re doing reinforced anecdotally from those who have gone it alone,” says Morgan. “Learning from others, you can avoid making basic mistakes and improve your chances of getting publicity for your business.”

From the creators of baby lotions and potions to the makers of killer heels, these ten self-made PR pros have seen their businesses covered in national magazines through to TV programs.

For Delia Timms, founder of findababysitter.com.au, a mention on Channel 9’s Mornings with Kerri-Anne program attracted thousands of visitors to their site, leading it to crash due to unexpected traffic. For Jodie Fox of Shoes of Prey, sales have been up 300%.

These are the real-world tips that have been most useful in their quest for media exposure:

10 killer tips for promoting your business and getting priceless publicity

1. “Know your customer and research which media they read,” says Catherine Langman of Cushie Tushies. “Then, make sure you introduce yourself to the editors of those publications, learn how to write a great press release, and get yourself onto their call-out lists!”

2. “Know your brand, be consistent with it and utilise social media – Twitter, Facebook and blog to create a buzz about your product,” says Kathy Jackson, from The Cupcake Wrapper Co.

3. “Be newsworthy,” recommends Joyce Watts, founder of CycleStyle. “I’ve made the mistake of emailing journalists with information about a new product, for instance, and been thanked politely for the information but told that they couldn’t find a relevant news angle to write about. Journalists receive many emails a day requesting a story, so you have to catch their eye with something that’s relevant for them.”

4. “Get some professional guidance of some sort,” advises Delia Timms, founder of findababysitter.com.au. “Provide an exceptionally good product or service and your customers will love it and talk about it — sometimes on TV!”

5. Use online video to promote your business – that’s the top tip from Jodie Fox, co-founder of Shoes of Prey. “Be clear about the story you mean to tell in your video and make sure it is delivered in a sharp and succinct manner. I think the average YouTube video length is 2.5 minutes. And do not forget to maintain quality of sound and lighting.”

6. “Build great relationships with journalists and editors and always be willing, ready and able to provide quotes, articles and images if they request them,” says Leah Squire of BYO Kids. “Also, do your research on what they do and make sure what you are pitching is on target.”

7. “When there is groundbreaking news you really must hit on it and respond ASAP,” says Antonette Golikidis of Little Innoscents.

8. “Make sure you can deliver your message in a short media-friendly way. Think like a journalist. Be brave and whenever you see something to comment on, just send an email,” suggests Carolin Dahlman, aka The Love Coach.

9. “Be prepared to sell yourself by writing your own articles,” says Gabrielle Edwards of American Yarns. “Local media are more than happy to print because they don’t have to write it themselves! An interesting article is great free publicity!”

10. “Go for each opportunity. Sometimes you get no response or knocked back, but it’s being persistent and taking the little steps,” urges Victoria Kasunic, a clinical psychologist specialising in men’s health and happiness. “Make sure you follow up the journalists – they may use your stuff but not let you know. And, don’t take a brusque disinterested voice on the other end of the phone or rejection personally. It’s not all about you!”

Anna Anderson is a PR consultant at JMM Communications. With more than nine years experience in media relations and corporate communications, Anna has developed PR strategies and campaigns across corporate, government and not-for-profit sectors.

Image by EraPhernalia Vintage

Get unlimited access to our FREE business tools…

Need to raise capital? Want to become a more persuasive presenter? Want to master social media? Is it time to overhaul your website? Unlock the library to get free access to free cheat sheets and business tools. Click here for free business tools.