If you’ve never invested in PR, you may have been told how much of a difference it could make and how much it could do for you, but you may not know it firsthand. You may even be skeptical about if it is worth putting the money, time, or effort into PR and media relations. Knowing how PR can drive qualified leads, however, may convince you that PR really can move the needle.
Press Hook’s founder and CEO, Michelle Songy, appeared on the MarTech Podcast to discuss how PR can drive qualified leads, what should come first when a brand’s getting started (PR or driving sales), and so much more. Listen to the full episode of the MarTech Podcast (part 2 with Michelle!) here. For part 1 of the MarTech Podcast conversation with Michelle, all about how AI is transforming the PR industry.
“Most brands that we see, whether they’ve tried it in the past and maybe didn’t see any results or some that do it and really see the ROI there, I think in general PR is about finding your audience and it’s connecting to a bigger market than you could ever market to on your own and you’re getting that person that is really credible in the industry to write about it,” Songy told Ben Shapiro of the MarTech Podcast. “And these days, with the movement to digital, it’s just a lot more trackable, it’s a lot more transparent to see how it affects your website traffic.”
How to find your audience
Finding your audience isn’t only for consumer brands. It’s an important part of PR for B2B brands too. Finding—and targeting—the right audience for your brand can help you build credibility, establish a following, and spread the word about who you are, what you do, and at what you particularly excel.
Spreading the word doesn’t just come from finding the right audience, however, it also (of course) comes with building a consumer base. But while you’re working on attracting customers, you can still focus some of your efforts on PR, Songy said.
“Even if you start small in niche publications and trade publications, it’s like, start building that and getting your name out there,” Songy stressed. “The problem is that even if you’re really young and you do paid ads, when someone Googles you or looks on Amazon, you don’t have any reviews and you have no credibility, that can hurt the potential of those ads, that people become interested, they want to do another check, just say, ‘hey, has anyone else used this beauty cream I’m about to buy?’ so it just gives those young brands that credibility that can be so important from the start.”
What's PR's impact?
Still, brands want to know how they can gauge the impact of even this smaller outreach.
The good news is, as Songy pointed out, with the rise of affiliates (increasingly essential if you work in the CPG space), there’s a bit more of a paper trail when it comes to impact. You can see the sales that came as a result of features in a given publication—you no longer have to guess.
That being said, the ROI from PR isn’t always seen directly in an uptick in sales. As Songy explained, you may see an increase in website traffic or social engagement, you may get buzz that translates to excitement among potential employees, an investor may be interested, the impact can be much more than just an obvious increase in sales.
Press Hook can also help give you more insight into how your PR efforts are faring. The Press Hook brand dashboard dives into who is looking at your products and profile and shows you stats about the publications at which interested journalists work. Put your profile to work for you for outreach large and small, while you’re initially building your brand and once you’re an established success.
To learn more about how Press Hook can help you tackle the world of PR and media relations (and hopefully drive more qualified leads your way), set up a call with our team here.