When someone talks about PR, most people instantly think Ab Fab with its:
Extremely expensive magazine/newspaper columns
Glossy magazine adverts…
Is that how you see it too?Believe it or not, PR doesn’t have to break the bank. In fact sometimes it won’t even touch it.Being in the knowMost of your PR doesn’t have to cost you a penny. All you need is a bit of time to get to know people and build a few relationships.First, there’s the press first. There’s bound to be an industry magazine you can contact or perhaps your networking group has a magazine or e-newsletter. Either way they are a great source of free PR.
Get in touch with the editor and find out what they’re looking for. If you have a great story (and we all love real life stories), pick up the phone and have a chat with them – tell them what you have to say. If they like it, write it down and send it in. But make sure it’s ready to go (without any typos etc) because if they can just cut, paste and print they are more likely to use it.Being seenGetting in front of people is another great way to boost your exposure.Whether it’s having a stand at an exhibition (yes that will have a cost attached to it), giving a talk at an event (that won’t), chairing a committee or attending events, you will gain great exposure and meet interesting and potentially useful people.In other words, get out there and network.Being bold onlineYou don’t have to be seen in the flesh to gain great PR.Social networking is everywhere – Twitter, Facebook, Google+, not to mention all the online forums.Get out there, start interacting and offering advice. Just make sure you aren’t just selling yourself. Social media is all about relationships, so chat with people, help out where you can and just be a normal person, not an uber salesman.Of course you can also blog. Having a blog that concentrates on your expertise enables you to write posts that help people and that will position yourself as an expert in your field.
Be yourselfEverything you do (within reason) can be used to further your PR.If you do daft things for charity, publicise it.If you’re launching a new look website, tell peopleIf you’ve moved premises, shout about it.If you’re taking on new staff, tell the world.Basically anything you do that is newsworthy can be turned into a press release.So you see, PR doesn’t have to cost the earth. Virtually everything you do has an element of PR in it, you just have to learn how to leverage it.