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Although we specialize in marketing, we do the following things to implement good public relations practices in our everyday routines. Here’s how to kill it in the PR department as a small business:
When I took a Public Relations course in college, one of my main takeaways was the weight that a brand’s image holds to the public. A business– big or small– has the responsibility to establish authentic relationships with consumers and practice ethical behavior to maintain a positive brand image.
Regardless of your company’s size and whether or not you have an internal PR person, there are always business practices that can be implemented in order to serve as a respectable leader in your industry.
Here are a couple of examples that come to mind:
Engage & Interact With Your Online Community
First thing’s first: Social media has opened many doors of opportunity for us to create personal relationships with our consumers. Nowadays, people utilize social media first to learn about your business, the aesthetic of your brand and get an idea of the experience your products or services bring.
By being present on your social accounts and interacting with people who engage with your brand, you’re giving them a sense of special treatment that they will remember the next time they need the solution your business offers. The better you are at establishing a close-knit community of followers who are using these platforms to communicate, the stronger your fanbase will be. Like and respond to every comment, follow your audience back and earn their loyalty!
Respond To Reviews – Both Negative & Positive
An important public relations move is to be open to constructive criticism. The fact of the matter is, there’s always room for improvement in your business model. And one of your customers may find a loophole that they’re quick to inform you about.
Be the bigger business owner and respond to every negative review as you would a positive one. An example could be, “Hi Tom, we’re sorry to hear about your experience, but we appreciate you bringing it to our attention! If you could please send us a more detailed overview using the contact form on our website, we’d love to offer you a discount to go toward your next visit with us.”
That way, not only are you offering your sincerest condolences, but you’re getting more information to prevent it from happening next time and you’re securing a future sale by providing a discount! Kill them with kindness– and offering free stuff works too.
Make Customer Appreciation Known
If you want your brand to grow its fanbase and secure those recurring customers, make sure they know how much you appreciate their business. This can look like hand-written thank you notes, a loyalty program that offers exclusive discounts or a customer-appreciate party hosted at your shop. Regardless, you should implement personal touches that your consumers can’t find anywhere else.
Sponsor Local Events
Don’t fret, this doesn’t have to be a big event or one that breaks the bank. If you know of a local book club that’s meeting or the networking event that’s happening down the street, offer to sponsor the event with a couple of coupons for your business or a sign-up to win a free consultation of sorts.
The idea here is to spread brand awareness in a giving fashion. Be the face of a business who is willing to get out in the community and serve others! Which leads me to my next point…
Support Other Small Businesses
There are small business owners out there who understand what you’ve been through to get where you are today. Their stories might not match yours exactly, but they are parallels that can offer you insight into better business practices and a stronger community.
In public relations terms, it’s essential to practice what you preach. If your business was founded on the support of the community who helped make your dream a reality, then support those who are in your shoes. Follow them on social media, comment on their posts, share their statuses, promote their events, do your part– and I can assure you, they will reciprocate your behavior.
As a small business, we can’t emphasize how vital it is to practice internal public relations processes such as these. As a part of our social media package, we monitor and interact on our clients’ social accounts, and we’ll also respond to reviews for review marketing. If you need us to take some marketing demands off your plate, fill out the form below to schedule a consultation with Kaitlyn: