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Developing a PR Plan

As your think about your marketing budget and how you’ll create interest in your small business, public relations (PR) should be a part of that plan. Advertising and marketing expenditures let you craft and control the message, but PR can extend the awareness and reach of your message, while still being very cost-effective. Here are some strategies you can use to build the awareness of your growing business.

Plan your message
PR News Wire offers several ideas about how PR can grow your business. But, before you can use any of them, you must decide what your message will be. What do you want your audience to think about your business, and what message would make them think that way?

Put your plan on a calendar
Entrepreneur Magazine’s outline for building a PR plan starts with establishing a calendar for your news releases. Planning out releases in advance helps you allocate the time and energy you’ll need to write and distribute your information. It also keeps you looking for topics and ideas throughout the year. Revisit and revise that calendar as needed; your plans should be flexible.

Make personal contacts
Reach out to reporters and/or media contacts at publications before you send them a press release. You’ll find them significantly more receptive if you’ve made the effort to understand their needs and the kind of information they’re looking for. Establishing that personal contact is a great first step.

Plan your tactics
In this list of 10 Steps to Creating a Winning PR Plan, the author notes the importance of defining specific tactics you’ll use to meet your PR goals. These may include social media, community efforts, or press releases and press conferences. Align each of these tactics to a strategic objective and you’ll be on your way.

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IBERIABANK specializes in helping small businesses grow. IBERIABANK.com/Business/Checking