The Key to Cost-Effective PR & Marketing

During the great recession, many companies sought to slash costs to cope with the slumping economy. Handling an economic slump is perhaps the most difficult responsibility for any business executive. Does one eliminate overtime, sell off unused equipment, or lay off workers? No one wants to cut jobs or shrink their operations, but during trying times, it can seem like there are very few options.

While cutting truly non-essential operations and leaning up processes were certainly important steps, savvy executives found ways of generating new business to ensure future profits and keep operations growing.

Survival of the Smartest
Even when budgets are tight there must be some method of generating new leads. Companies that completely did away with any form of marketing are became invisible, while others that distributed their marketing dollars shrewdly with the right form of marketing were able to get in front of qualified prospects and grow.

These executives understood that in order to expand during good times or bad, it is important to be in the media spotlight. Expansion cannot occur without actively working to bring in new business.

The Right Medium
With all of the options available, it can be difficult to find the right medium. Top choices include television, radio, magazines, newspapers, trade shows, and the Internet. Each provide distinct advantages. But for organizations with specialized audiences and a more limited choice of media, one of the best options is often print and online trade publications.

How does one best utilize trade publication opportunities? Augmenting a print advertising program with PR allows a company to expand on its attributes. Properly placed editorial within publications provide an increased level of credibility. When targeted properly, they yield great results reaching hundreds of thousands of prospects at once.

In addition to the credible exposure, corporations can use article reprints as sales tools and as direct mail pieces to reduce production costs of additional marketing materials. These reprints are often more effective than traditional marketing brochures, because what others say about a company carries more weight with prospects than what a company says about itself.

To take advantage of the volume of opportunity available to organizations, it is imperative to find all publications that reach core markets, as well as niche markets. Often businesses are familiar with only the top three to five publications in their core markets but are unaware of the greater number of publications that reach their target markets.

Typically there are 30 to 50 publications that corporations can be covered in, and often there are hundreds, depending on the number of vertical markets served.

Working with a knowledgeable public relations agency to assist in media relations efforts carries many advantages. Creating comprehensive media lists, pitching, crafting relevant and yet still promotional content often requires years of knowledge and insight in the industry.

Only companies that remain in the media spotlight, in such a way that retains third-party credibility, will flourish in our post recession economy. Cost-cutting and leaning measures are all necessary, but credible PR will go a long way to providing a healthy balance between maintaining the bottom line and generating that all-important new business.