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Wrapping up on 2022 and looking ahead to 2023, it’s highly likely that you’ll now be assessing your marketing and public relations (PR) activities and crafting new plans and strategies based on successes and wins, or lessons learned.
However, the opportunities for brand visibility and consumer engagement are changing almost weekly, and even for the pros, it can feel like a media minefield when it comes to knowing where to focus time, energy, and budgets.
The good news is that your customers or service users are looking for something different too.
The beauty of brand and business visibility via your PR is that it is always malleable, and whilst this may make things more of a headache, the key is to focus on key objectives and tactics that help you make the most of your news, events, and engagement this year.
In 2022, we have seen a consolidation of the previous time of flux and “sales at all cost,” and we are looking forward to a clearer period of knowing exactly where our customers or service users are at. With this knowledge, coupled with a deep understanding of your target demographic, it becomes easier to find them, educate them, and retain them when you know what they read, what they listen to, and what they resonate with.
As such, here are five new tactics to consider for your 2023 PR plans:
1. KEEPING IT “LO-FI” Not to make a brand manager shudder, but the fact is, overly glossy, filtered content in all its forms is a huge turn-off. It’s time to get comfortable with relatable storytelling across your content for higher engagement. It’s more trustworthy, and consumers are increasingly turned off with inauthentic and staged imagery and videos. Think about it, these come across as straight ads, and when you are looking to truly capture people’s time and imagination, it’s simply not the type that works any longer. The good news is that it is friendlier on your budgets too. It’s not time to ditch the curated work entirely, of course; some industries need to show off products, venues, and experiences at their very best. But for social media, behind-the-scenes reigns supreme, and make use of those customers or employees who are your true advocates- the rest of your customers will resonate as well. Don’t forget to encourage and amplify any user generated content created in this way also- again, trust and social proof is everything when it comes to buying decisions.
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2. USE YOUR DATA And I’m not talking about the latest company audit stats. The fact is that it is increasingly harder to see media cut through for many organizations, coverage-wise. Paid editorial is on the increase, and whilst we are not against this when necessary, your budgets may be. This is where creativity is key- what can you talk about that the media will actually want to cover? The data you hold is the perfect example of where the story may lie. Infographics, trends, statistics, and surprising quirks- it will all be there somewhere, however big your market. Interesting, surprising, and relevant- timing can be everything, and “newsjacking” is a vital tool in your PR arsenal. But again, keep it relevant!
3. MAKE USE OF AFFILIATES If you have a product business, affiliate sales are going to be bigger than ever in 2023. Sign up to popular platforms as soon as you can, and be prepared- even if the time isn’t right for you logistically, you will need this in your sales and marketing arsenal. If all this is new to you, it is imperative to get your head around it as soon as you can. When affiliate marketing is done right, it’s an excellent tool for increasing revenue, boosting order values, encouraging customer loyalty, and much more.
4. CREATE TRUE THOUGHT LEADERSHIP Generic content will never be king. It’s time to “write the headlines that only you can,” and when it comes to thought leadership and sharing expertise, it’s the only way ahead. Opportunities for thought leaders, opinion editorials, and building personal and business brands through commentary and true insight are growing exponentially. Got a “controversial” opinion into an industry, trade, or consumer issue? That’s the topic to pitch or write. Uncovered some unique data from your business or customer insights? Brilliant. Consistency in content may be key, but publications and search engines support original, relevant, and newsworthy content, and so do the readers and viewers, believe me- so, don’t be shy!
5. BECOME YOUR OWN PUBLISHER No, websites are not dead- quite the opposite when utilized properly. If you are struggling to achieve visibility the traditional way, you can easily do it yourself. Invest in quality written content that utilizes solid search engine optimization (SEO) tactics, and drive traffic to your own media. A fully “linked-up” strategy is imperative here, but it can help you build a database alongside that crucial keyword ranking and social proof. Social platforms may feel like the be all and end all, but do not underestimate the benefit of search when it comes to lead generation and ultimately, sales.
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