Creativity and Coverage on a Shoestring
As part of SBT’s portfolio of social enterprises it was a great opportunity to not only meet with fellow businesses under their umbrella but to hear from the experts on how to achieve worthwhile press coverage on a non-existent budget.
As a not for profit organisation we, like many new business start-ups, simply do not have a large budget for marketing campaigns and yet rely heavily on coverage to promote our services.
Vanessa Pine, Director of Atlas partners and former Special Adviser to the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills has more than 12 years’ experience in corporate communications. Vanessa spoke candidly about ‘Creativity and Coverage on a Shoestring’.
- It doesn’t take massive budgets to achieve coverage, but it does take time!
- Ask yourself are you spending your time on the right things? Are you so busy but spending time being busy on the right things?
- The key is planning and prioritisation, whether this is daily, weekly or monthly – plan and prioritise!
- Coverage about your company is great, but before you strive for coverage be clear what the coverage is for. Why are you trying to drive media coverage? Remember coverage is not the end goal. It is about reaching an audience effectively.
- Ask ‘what are my objectives?’ and is everybody in the company aligned to the same objectives.
- PR is not rocket science – it is about being human and having a story to tell!
- Research and evaluation – how well do you know your target market? You don’t have pots of money to conduct extensive market research but you can think about how to reach your target market. What are they doing with their day, how can you reach out to them?
- Give yourself time to do this research. Talk to end consumers! If you already have consumers that have bought into your service – talk to them! What do they do with their days, how did you reach them?
- Metrics and KPI’s – if you don’t set goals or research your metrics how do you know if you are succeeding?
- Partnerships can work – hone into those who share similar interests, who have resources you need, who has reach to your audience and who has credibility. Always remember though what can you offer them?
- Don’t forget about your own employees and your internal customer – what can they do to spread the word?
- Make it easy for others to talk about you. Develop a tool kit. Do you have an eight word description of the business?
- Creativity! Spend time thinking how to tell your story creatively but don’t expect this to come straight away. Give yourself time, this is a process. Take yourself out of your working environment and brain storm. But google how to run a good brain storming session first! Most importantly have a go, take risks and learn from your mistakes.
Thank-you to Social Business Trust and Bain and Company for organising the session, and huge thank you to Vanessa for sharing her words of wisdom.