By Mark Macias
There are many ways to launch a media campaign so it is under-budget and efficient from the start. Here are four steps to ensure your PR Firm is continually working immediately after the contract is signed.
Get your PR Firm to Work
- Line up your media elements in advance
The media frequently needs visuals to complement their story. Your publicist will have a stronger story sell to the media if he or she gets those elements in advance. These elements can include items like photos or videos, samples of the product, screenshots of the mobile app, statistics, bios, etc. For TV, visuals are critical. Without good visuals, you just have radio. Great visuals can make the difference between a story getting on TV or in the newspaper. If you don’t have a video to share with the producers, it might be a harder story sell for your PR firm. However, if you line up these products in advance, your PR firm will be able to run on day one and not spend your valuable money waiting for elements to arrive.
- Select your spokesperson before you start
This is a crucial item for every campaign. You need to identify who will speak with reporters on behalf of your company and if you get on TV, who will sound best. You don’t need to wait for a PR firm to start vetting or selecting this person. Ask yourself a few questions: Who knows your product best? Who is articulate? Who has the CV to support your services as an expert? Who is your best salesperson? By asking these questions and narrowing down the choices, your PR team won’t have to wait for you to decide on the expert they will introduce to the media. They can sell this person to the media on day one.
- Identify the logistics person internally
The most successful PR firms typically have a point-person with the company. Yes, some startups may not have the budget for a PR point-person, and that’s fine. In those cases, we’ve always worked directly with the founder. But in larger organizations, where the CEO is busy running the business, identifying a point-person to assist with logistics will make the work-flow more efficient, saving you money. This will streamline the PR process and move things along quicker.
- Identify the narrative
I’ve worked on many campaigns where we were able to start pitching the story on day one because the company’s leaders were on board with the launch. That is efficient for clients because stories are only sold through a pitch. If you can start pitching stories on day one, your campaign is already in execution mode. We’ve also run media campaigns where the clients needed time to discuss and debate ideas internally. That’s okay. It happens with many large companies where branding and messaging are crucial. However, if you can streamline that idea process so the launch angles are approved faster, your PR firm won’t be sitting around, waiting to get the green light.
Macias PR was named the 2015 and 2016 top PR Firm of the Year – USA by Finance Monthly. The founder – Mark Macias – is a former Executive Producer with NBC and Senior Producer with CBS in New York. He is also a PR contributor with CNBC, providing media analysis, insight and crisis advice on timely business topics.