Is Publicity All It’s Cracked Up to Be?

from my old blog: Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Again I got a call to do some publicity for a colleague’s client. Why? Because often people think marketing is just publicity, that getting your name in print will create that tipping point to make a company a huge success.

However, doing publicity without the marketing strategy behind it can be very costly without producing sustained results.

Sure your web traffic can skyrocket from a great article about your company, or your phone can ring off the hook for a day or two. But without solid marketing tactics to sustain that hit, results wane quickly.

For business owners trying to do their own publicity, I found Jill Lublin’s co-authored book on guerilla publicity quite useful along with Bulldog Reporter’s moderated interviews with the media.

But to do PR properly you must devote solid time and effort (gee is there anything worthwhile in life that doesn’t require that?) to build a media list in your industry, submit online to PR distro companies, do some media relations, create an editorial calendar of strategy for what you’ll pitch to whom and when, plus craft astoundingly fascinating pitches that are keyword-rich and command attention with the right kind of follow up. So few people do this correctly.

Many business classes teach students to spam all publications with press releases that are basically sales pitches about their business. What a waste. So, before spending huge sums on publicity, or conducting campaigns that waste time, take a look at your overall strategy to ensure it’s the right one.

A marketing coach or consultant can advise on that direction, and should be able to refer a good publicist when the strategy is sound. Once you know what to do, the actual doing of it is easy. “Knowledge is Bliss” as we say.


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