By Rich Kahn.
Small business owners have a lot on their plate. Oftentimes they’re doing it all — ordering inventory, responding to customers, managing employees. Marketing their company is the last thing on their mind. And with a smaller budget than large corporations, hiring a PR firm to do the legwork isn’t always feasible.
But that doesn’t mean they can’t still get press for their small business. Here are five strategies to easily incorporate into your small business’ daily routine. And the best part: they won’t break the bank.
1. “Newsjack” relevant breaking news
Always keep an eye out for breaking news that is relevant to your business. You never know when an opportunity to “newsjack” may arise. For example, perhaps there’s an impending snowstorm, and Channel 6 is looking for a local plowing company to give viewers some wintry weather safety tips.
For no cost at all, you can lend your expertise while getting press for your business.
To seize opportunities like these, sign up for Google Alerts for keywords related to your business. When you get an alert for a relevant article, reach out to the reporter and offer your expertise. Be sure to include the caveat that if they don’t need you as a source now, to keep you in mind for future stories.
2. Be a source on PR Newswire
PR Newswire offers journalists a place to find sources and experts. Reporters who need to speak with an expert (like you) on a subject, can submit a media query or search PR Newswire’s experts database.
Only respond to the queries that interest are relevant to you. If you’re selected as a source, you may be rewarded with potential press in the form of direct quotes, mentions, sometimes even a feature article.
3. Connect with industry influencers
Influencer marketing can garner you a lot of positive exposure. But it only works when influencers are genuine advocates of your brand. Younger audiences like Millennials and Generation Z can detect when something is fake. And there’s nothing they dislike more than inauthentic brands.
Social media is an efficient way to connect with industry influencers. Search relevant hashtags and don’t forget to comb through your existing followers. Look for those influencers who truly love your brand, ones that are already raving about it.
However, influencers do come at a cost. If certain influencers are out of your price range, consider using micro-influencers, which are just as powerful, but for a lesser cost.
4. Start a blog
Increase your brand exposure by starting a company blog. Blogging is a great way to showcase your expertise and drive traffic to your site. And you never know when the press might read an article of yours and want to feature it in the news.
Try to blog at least twice a week. If you’re unable to produce fresh content on a regular basis, consider recruiting guest bloggers to write for your site. Another tip: focus on creating evergreen content, timeless blog posts that will remain relevant. When you’re pressed for time and need to post a new blog, evergreen content can be republished in a pinch.
5. Leverage social media
Once you’ve got content, you’ll want to leverage it on social media. Share it on platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, any place where your target audience will want to read it. Then take it a step further and engage with your audience. Address any questions they might have about the piece.
Also share others’ posts, too. Not only will you build a rapport with your industry colleagues (and audience), you’ll be boosting your credibility as a thought-leader, too.
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