Trylon Communications  - Volume I Issue 1
       
Beat the advertising budget blues
Trylon Communications Staff

Everyone knows that the first budget getting the axe during a downturn is marketing and advertising.  The company wants no drop-off in traffic or sales, but cuts the budget to the bone.  Savvy marketers turn to their secret weapon – effective public relations.

Smart marketers know that the time to build market share is when everyone else is pulling back.  Unfortunately, not many of us get the chance to expand our marketing during down times, as our budgets go under review and inevitably get cut.

It’s time to sharpen your public relations campaign and find exposure through news and media channels.  Here is a list of five things you can do this week that could help your company get more exposure.

 

  1. Write a strong opinion piece or article about your industry.  You could focus on a new technology, a trend in the industry, or take a stance on a controversial issue.  Submit the article to well-distributed industry magazines and newsletters to be considered for publication.  Just be sure that they include your by-line; you want people to know where the article came from and how to reach you or your company's web site.
     

  2. Find a public speaking opportunity.  This could be for you or for one of the key executives in your company.  Your CFO could talk to a group about finances and business, or your CEO may have some stories that would go over well at the next Chamber of Commerce event.  Contact clubs and groups in your area and offer to speak at their next events.  These groups are always looking for good speakers.
     

  3. Dig into industry trade magazines and look for opportunities in upcoming issues for your participation.  Contact the editors to see if they have any stories coming up that could use input from your company.  You would be surprised at how many times an editor can find just the right spot where they really needed someone like you to provide an illustration or third party endorsement of a point or story.
     

  4. Sponsor something unusual.  Remember a few months ago, when the owner of the Dallas Mavericks said that one of the officials at a basketball game couldn’t run a Dairy Queen?  He received national press for weeks (he still gets mentioned occasionally) for going to work at the local Dairy Queen for a day.  Find a worthwhile cause and have a group of volunteers from your company organize a fundraising event or something similar.  You will get a triple benefit – your company will receive recognition, you will help the community, and your employees will become just a little bit closer.
     

  5. Offer to be a guest on a local radio talk show.  Find a host that examines issues related to your industry and offer to send an executive from your company the next time they need a guest.  These shows are always scrambling to land good guests.  Contact the producer of the show and offer to send a media kit on your company and the biography of the executive you feel would best represent your company in that arena.  Remember that these producers are looking for a lively exchange, so your best representative may not be the highest qualified person – it may be the most animated.

Don’t forget your everyday public relations duties as well, building your media list, cultivating relationships, issuing appropriate press releases, etc.  When things pick up, the journalists remember the people that kept them informed during the lean times!