Why PR is simpler than you think it is

It was great to get Janet Murray onto the podcast to share her tips for doing your own PR.

The interview was pretty myth-busting, no big agency fees, and tools that are freely accessible to all. In many ways it turned our normal concept of PR on its head. And turned it into a marketing method that will really help with your SEO too!

The idea behind Janet’s methods fit very neatly with the ideas expressed in Ryan Holiday’s Trust me I’m Lying (featured in our recent book review podcast episode).

That the newspaper and other websites that we’re all trying to get on are desperate for stories and content, journalists are stretched really thin and they really need our help!

There were 2 key ways to help the journalists that I took from the interview. Both of these you can do for free.

Keep an eye on what the journalists need right now

This just involves regularly checking a couple of places where journalists ask for help:

  • HARO – you can sign up for free, and you’ll get 3 emails a day listing journalists in need
  • Sourcebottle – again you can sign up for free, and you’ll get 1 email per day listing journalists in need
  • #journorequest – this runs on twitter, so you will have to be a little more proactive here!

Look through the requests as you get them, and if you fit any of them (don’t be afraid to be a bit creative!) then make contact.

I’ve been following this method for a month now, and most responses take less than 10 minutes to make. I’ve also already been featured as an eCommerce expert on 3 different websites, not bad as the turn around time seems to be a few weeks!

Identify key places you want to be featured – and try to get an article in there

This is a practice often referred to as “guest blogging” (just in case you want to dive off and do some more research).

Here you identify key websites you would like to appear on, then make contact with them and pitch some ideas.

I’ve been using this method for a while, and eCommerce MasterPlan is now regularly featured on MarketingDonut (a top 10 source of traffic to this website), Tamebay, and InternetRetailing.com.au (plus a few others in the pipeline!).

The great thing is, the more of this activity you do, the more opportunities come to you direct. So it’s definately a marketing method which pays off (in a small way) quickly, but then builds a lot of momentum pretty fast.

Once it’s starts working for you don’t forget to…

The good thing of course is that in helping the journalists you’re also helping yourself, by getting your business featured and a link back to your website.

You can make a lot more of every time you’re mentioned by doing this simple things:

  • Create a list of all the “press appearances” you’ve made – put the logos on the homepage, on your about us page etc
  • Share the latest mention / latest feature with your customers – on social media and email
  • Thank the journalist for including you, and make sure they know you’re happy to help again!

If you want to listen to the full interview just go here.