21 November 2014 Business

PR Investment – When’s the Right Time?

PR stands for reputation, like a developer stands for coding, or a gardener stands for gardening – but when is the right time to make PR investment? It requires daily dedication, a long term commitment, monitoring and learning to make it better. It could be that for those failed campaigns we have noticed, they simply didn’t commit to PR after the big launch, maybe because the funds weren’t in place. Without a long term commitment, PR’s impact will only ever be short lived and will struggle to achieve desired goals.

Or perhaps the product or service just wasn’t ready? It seems ridiculous but in the panic of being “first to market”, so many owners force through products that simply aren’t up to scratch. People may try to download the app or buy through the website only to find multiple bugs or slow processing. They lose interest and are gone as quickly as they arrive.

Timing is critical. Even with the product debugged and perfectly ready for market, those first few users and buyers should come organically. It’s a myth that PR can only work on the day your new business launches. In fact, often PR works at its very best after launch, when the product is active, being used, reviewed and commented on; when any influential journalist can see that there are users out there who believe that this product is valuable necessary and worth it.

Or perhaps they went after the wrong media? So often companies are fixated by the lure of a particular outlet that they fail to see the bigger picture of how their audience consumes media. Is TechCrunch really right to drive mums to download a new app or teenagers share a viral campaign? It may be a part of a bigger initiative but mums aren’t rushing home after the school run to check out what’s trending on TechCrunch, are they?

Finally, it is crucial to know what success looks like and how you can measure the results achieved.  PR doesn’t necessarily have an immediate impact on sales, but that’s not to say it isn’t incredibly valuable for long term commercial growth. It should never be monitored on sales alone.

Getting a consumer to notice, feel confident, discuss and form opinions from PR but then actually click through to buy from an ad still means that PR has worked; and what impact did those great blogger reviews and links have on SEO? A sustained, integrated long term PR strategy will achieve the best results and significantly impact the business.

But how do you measure PR success then?  Yes the thud of “a good old fashioned coverage booklet” is great but it’s not just about volume. One carefully placed blog post, feature in a Sunday newspaper or even a tweet, can be a quicker and more effective way to securing the deal or building an understanding. At Cherish we focus on the quality of every placement using our own in-house measurement system so we’re constantly taking the temperature of our campaigns to see how effective every placement is. It’s really that 360 analysis will give an accurate measurement of success.

A good PR team can help your business grow sustainably, taking care of your reputation and making sure customers love you, and keep buying or using your product or service but make sure you’re ready, clear and realistic.

If you are interested in discussing how Cherish can help you, please get in touch with the team on info@cherishpr.com or drop us a line on +44 (0)203 626 0283.

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