The Two Step Plan for PR Success

electiomAfter weeks and weeks of media posturing, the results of the local elections are in (at the time of writing, the results of the Euro vote are still to be announced.)

For anyone glancing at a headline or catching sight of a TV screen, you’d be forgiven for thinking that UKIP had swept the board and was about to take control at councils up and down the country.  The reality is that UKIP may have gained a considerable number of seats, but its gains are less than half those garnered by the Labour Party and it does not have control of a single local authority.

The point here is not the winners and losers of the actual battle for local Government, but the winners and losers in the PR war. So while UKIP may not have won what many might consider the real prize; it has won the lion’s share of the headlines. No mean feat for a political party without a single local authority or seat in Westminster to its name.

It’s a reminder to us all of the importance of perception – regardless of the real story behind the headlines. Few companies have the confidence to punch above their weight when it comes to marketing but my advice is always ‘think big to be big’. After all, if you think of any major brand in your sector or any major business figure, I’ll guarantee that ‘modest’ is not the first word that springs to mind!

Of course, I would never advise that a company lies or exaggerates to present itself dishonesty – which is, perhaps, the difference between spin and bone fide PR! Instead, you should be looking for the ways in which you can demonstrate experience, leverage key projects or customer relationships and communicate the ways in which you offer a smarter or better value choice for customers.

Stealing a march on the competition is about two things:

  1. Getting the message right
  2. Getting the message heard as often and as widely as possible

To do that you need to have a clearly defined PR strategy with well-articulated messages that you can substantiate.  You then need to identify who you need to communicate with (influencers as well as customers) and how best to do that in terms of channels and tactics.

What UKIP has done very successfully is make itself relevant to a wide demographic, increasing its chances of success.  But in business that’s not always the right approach – it’s up to you to decide what success should look like – our job is to help you get there

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