Self-serve PR ideas that businesses can use for free or low-cost tools for public relations tactics that deliver big impact results
It is time to toot your own horn. With a general understanding of public relations best practices and effective use of new media marketing tools, businesses can easily generate their own free or low-cost publicity.
Public relations is about generating buzz for your company that improves your brand, credibility, recognition and (hopefully) sales. This ongoing effort should encompass multiple tactics and tools that complement each other to build on your public relations goals and objectives. But with today’s new media marketing tools, an effective PR campaign does not need to break the bank.
Here are some cheap PR tools that are simple to execute, deliver big impact public relations results and are low-cost or free to utilize.
YouTube Videos. Posting a video on YouTube is an easy interactive way to reach the masses with your message. A YouTube video marketing channel is free to set-up and video PR messages can be used for company announcements, product or service promotions or partnership press releases. Videos can be embedded into websites or blogs (making them more interactive) and can generate more views from organic search engine results, YouTube searches and related videos on YouTube.
Online Press Releases. Sending a press release over the business wire is one of the best ways to ensure news coverage, or “pick-ups”, from general news and industry media in print or online. Cheap yet effective PR distribution services like PRWeb.com, 24-7PressRelease.com or eReleases Press Release Distribution Services make it very easy for small businesses to get access to PR services once reserved for bigger businesses with large PR budgets.
LinkedIn. A good LinkedIn network and being a member of relevant industry groups on LinkedIn can be a great cheap PR tool. A good tactic is to continue to develop a strong network of LinkedIn business connections and become an active participant on LinkedIn group discussions. These connections and groups will then be more receptive to news and product press releases and PR announcements. Make sure your company profile is also very thorough with product information highlights.
Facebook. Setting up a Facebook business page is another great PR tool that is free to use. Facebook business page promotion strategies to increase your page likes will help you get the word out with public relations campaigns. Facebook can also have a viral effect with “likes” and comments that can be seen by friends of friends to improve your publicity potential. Low-cost Facebook advertising campaigns can also help get targeted publicity and extend your PR reach.
Blogs or Websites. Get your news out by connecting with targeted blogs or websites relevant to your niche industry. Sending a press release or product news announcement directly to the blog or website and request PR coverage or a story write-up. Offering pre-written content with press-ready photos is also very helpful to make website coverage easier.
Article Content Sites. Seeding a story with backlinks to your website is a great way to generate more website exposure, as well as more PR publicity. Article content sites like Hubpages or eZineArticles are free to set-up and allow promotional cross-links.
Promotional Giveaways. Thoughtful promotional items… tote bags, custom pens, hats, t-shirts… can help improve branding and public image on an ongoing basis. Original promotional giveaways can even generate buzz. Look for cheap online sites that have cutting-edge promo options with low minimum order quantities.
Media Outreach. Don’t forget about traditional PR strategies of developing key media contacts for your news distribution. Keep your own PR media list to a reasonable number of contacts to develop ongoing relationships.
Awards and Recognitions. Attaining an industry award or recognition for your company can be an inexpensive way to gain additional exposure. The PR benefits of industry awards range from improved exposure to increased credentials for potential customers, investors and partners.
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