While the value of a properly integrated campaign by a PR agency can’t be impressed upon enough for promoting your business, I know that this isn’t always feasible. Cost restrictions, bad timing, juggling between PR, marketing or advertising – all good reasons why a PR campaign isn’t high on your business agenda. Cost, in particular, is often a stumbling block, especially in the current economic climate.
However, there are some ways to help you build your brand and public awareness that you can do yourself – even better, they’re free!
Start a Company Blog
I know this has been said numerous times before and you’re probably tired of hearing it, but a company blog is one of the best forms of promotion you can ever have. Think about it – press releases have to be newsworthy if they want to be seen as authoritative and be picked up by the newswires. Nor should they be seen as too salesy (and rightly so).
Yet with a company blog, this needn’t be the case (although going too promotional might put people off). You can keep your customers up-to-date with the latest news as it happens – new employees, product launches, upcoming promotions, and much more.
Business blogs also offer something invaluable to any business looking to build customer loyalty – a human voice. This “softer approach” has been proven to resonate with customers and helps increase repeat sales and recommendations.
Social Media and Social Networking
Another great promotional tool is social media and social networking. If you’re not using the likes of Twitter, LinkedIn, Digg, Stumbleupon and others, you’re missing out on a huge untapped market.
By making connections on these sites, and others like them, you’re gaining access to hundreds if not thousands of potentially new customers. Twitter in particular is fast becoming one of the online networking places to be. Just make sure you use social media properly – as a strategy for communicating and not merely a self-promotional tool.
Have a Company Email Newsletter
Does your website offer a newsletter option? If not, why not? This is the ideal medium for targeting “hot prospects” – after all, if someone’s signed up to your newsletter, that means they want to hear your news. You don’t have to actively go after these subscribers – they’re already your “fans”.
Just make sure you have interesting content to send out. Again, it shouldn’t just be all about you and your company. Offer useful tips to your customers on how they can help their own business. This may be with one of your products or services, or simple business housekeeping. Either way, offering help and solutions will ensure customers look at you as someone that wants to help, and this will make them more loyal to your company.
These are just some of the ways you can promote yourself. There are others – joining an Internet forum or discussion board, for example. Yet they all share one thing in common – they’re all free.
The only cost is a bit of your time – for the potential results, surely that’s got to be worth it?
Copyright © 2008 Press Release PR. If you wish to reprint this article, please list an author credit as “Danny Brown / Press Release PR” and link the credit to http://www.pressreleasepr.com