The 5 biggest PR mistakes and how to avoid them
Author: André Kappelhoff, Viking PR
Any successful business strategy should include some form of Public Relations element. Whether you write your own newsletter, create blog posts or send out press releases – there are many things that you can do…and just as many things that you can do wrong.
My recent Zoominar with the AIPP discussed the 5 biggest PR mistakes and how to avoid them. This article is a brief summary of our Zoom session, but to view the full webinar, please click here.
Before we begin, we need to ask ourselves ‘What is PR?’ and ‘What are the objectives of a PR strategy?’. In a nutshell, it’s really about the management of your company reputation and positioning your business as a trustworthy and reliable brand. A PR consultant has a number of channels to achieve these objectives but let’s focus on some of the key ones, which are:
Media relations – The liaison with the press / journalists
Copywriting – From your website content to newsletters, copywriting allows you to be creative whilst highlighting your key messages to position your company and yourself as a thought leader.
Award entries – Awards can help add credibility to your business but the award entries can take up a lot of time to complete. Ensure to include everything the judges are looking for and don’t hesitate to liaise with the award organisers for tips on your entry. If the task seems too big – Viking PR is happy to help.
Press trips – A fantastic opportunity to host and meet journalists, however, press trips are hard work and need meticulous preparation, management and follow up.
Events – Whether you are attending an exhibition, roadshow or are planning your very own seminar or webinar – events are a crucial part of any PR strategy to keep your business relevant.
Social media – Don’t underestimate the power of social media. Not only do platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn and TikTok allow you to directly liaise with your clientele; they also allow you to share instant news updates.
Now that we’ve covered this, let’s move on to the 5 biggest PR mistakes you can make:
1. Not knowing your target media
If you plan to reach out to the press yourself, it’s essential that you know the media title and are familiar with the individual journalist you wish to approach. Always bear in mind the publication’s target audience and whether your news update would be relevant. There’s a certain etiquette to follow as some writers do not want to be contacted on certain days or times of the week.
2. Focusing on the wrong story angle
It’s easy to get excited about your company news such as an anniversary or a new initiative that you are introducing. Whilst these are positive updates, they aren’t necessarily relevant to the press. Before approaching the journalist, really do your research on which story angles tend to get covered. Ask yourself, is the story angle I have in mind really suitable for this publication?
3. Being too slow
Public Relations can be very stressful and requires you to work towards tight deadlines. To me this really is part of the fun as you are constantly driven to deliver information on time on behalf of your clients. Ensure to have as much information prepared and ready for any sudden press enquiries – especially high-resolution photographs!
4. Being too fluffy
As with most things – less is more. When compiling website content or press material, aim to make your copy descriptive and informative but without the overuse of adjectives. If you are planning to write your own press releases, there’s a certain structure to follow and if not done properly, your release can get dismissed by the editor very quickly.
5. Not engaging with your target audience
Besides media relations, I always advise clients to engage with their target audiences directly. During our AIPP Zoominar, we briefly discussed live videos via TikTok, which you might wish to look into further. I also advise my clients to organise webinars, which is a great way to inform your audience about everything related to buying a property abroad at the moment. Last but not least, consider publishing regular newsletters and blog content which you can further share via your social media accounts.
Interested in Property PR Support?
An established property PR professional since 2005 and member of the AIPP, André has worked across global client portfolios for some of London’s most reputable PR agencies. With the urge to provide a service that is more bespoke, André launched Viking PR to offer his property PR services as a freelance PR consultant.
Having previously represented the likes of Royal Westmoreland in Barbados and Kristall Spaces in Austria, some of his current clients include French estate agency network Sextant Properties and London estate agency Chestertons. In addition to his PR advice being published in a number of property titles, André has also been a judge at the annual Property Press Awards.
Interested in property PR support? Visit www.vikingpr.co.uk or call André directly via +44 (0)208 191 9145.