Page 59

OW_septoct2012

In Focus publiC rElatiOns101 Vital to building your business W franchisees for many years, I’ve had the listeners, viewers, etc.The question is: what’s considered newsworthy? It’s informationBreaking news includes new products or services, unique events,“shaped” so it gets through.packaged so that the media see it as relevant to their readers,hat is public relations, and why is it so importantfor you as a franchisee? Having worked withCold Stone Creamery®, Burger King®,Sonic® Drive-In, Carl’s Jr.® and Hardee’s® pleasure of helping franchise owners just like you use publicity to press conferences or significant personnel appointments. For any increase business and enhance their reputation/image as a leader. news story, determine the who, what, when, where, why and how. Public relations is the deliberate, planned and sustained Feature news includes important social/business/technology effort to establish and maintain mutual understanding and trends or human interest stories. Enrich your story for the open communications between an organization and its audience’s interest. audiences. Publicity can not only serve as a marketing tool, Opinion could be your unique point of view, such as by-lined but also strengthen your relationships article in the writer’s voice. w ith ex isting customers, attract You can have a great story to tell, but if you new customers, reach inf luencers don’t send it to the appropriate media for you, it and strengthen employee pride. It may not get heard. That’s why it’s so important influences public opinion – the better to identify your target media. Could it be a daily the public knows you, the more it will newspaper, radio/television stations, weekly like you (providing you deserve it). newspapers (city/community publications), Many franchisees ask, “What is the trade publications or another outlet? difference between public relations and Just a few ways to get the word out advertising?” Well, public relations is very are press releases, media alerts, fact cost-effective, whereas advertising is costly. sheets (including the most relevant Public relations has higher credibility, such as facts), bios, and visuals (photos, implied third-party endorsement, as opposed to video footage, photo opportunities). advertising, which is paid endorsement. However, public One way that I’ve found to provide relations has less control over messages and timing than does ef fective a nd u nique publicit y advertising. opportunities for franchisees is radio What can publicity do for you? In addition to giving third-party promotions. These on-air custom created or tailor-made contests, endorsement, it can help you create an environment to promote games, live DJ remotes and listener “call-in” campaigns and products and services, build an image and enhance credibility, meet giveaways weave key marketing messages into non-commercial, the needs of special market segments, and support positioning editorial contexts that listeners really “tune in” to. Airtime can be strategy. Internally, it helps keep management informed of and bartered in exchange for listener giveaway prizes. Radio promotion responsive to public opinion, helps management stay abreast of campaigns are demographic-specific, traffic-driving tools that change and effectively utilize change, and serves as an early warning typically yield a minimum ROI of 3-to-1, although it has the potential system to help anticipate trends. to be even more. What can’t publicity do for you? Eliminate negatives or the No matter what forms of publicity you use, it’s important to be competition, control the media or the message, or be a “quick” fix. aware of the media’s needs: be prompt with responses, sensitive to So – who can you reach with publicity? Internally: employees, deadlines, have knowledge of individual media’s structure, format stakeholders and board of directors. Externally: the media, and frequency, and follow up! regulatory agencies, customers and the community. Of course, it’s always beneficial to work with a public relations How do you get started with publicity? First, set your public professional to enhance any publicity efforts. Professionals relations objectives and strategies. Your business goals must drive have established media contacts, and experience in strategic your public relations goals, and your objectives/strategies have to public relations planning and execution. While working with a be results-oriented. The strategies you follow are the most crucial professional, you can focus on your own area of expertise. m .CO decisions of a public relations program. Publicity is an excellent way to make your business stronger and s O t Next, you need to realize that impacting and targeting the media let the public get to know you – consider this very important and HO is an art, not a science. All communications have to pass through an effective marketing tool to enjoy increased success! p ris/ editorial “filter” at any media outlet. In order for your message to mO not be passed over, it must “sell” newsworthiness and be properly Durée Ross is President of Durée & Company, Inc. erry t www.OpportunityWorld.com Opportunity World • September/October 2012 59


OW_septoct2012
To see the actual publication please follow the link above