I'll Bet You a Free Ad You're Not Getting Your Fair Share of PR
First of all, it's important to understand that PR coverage is extremely valuable to a building product manufacturer because it represents a lengthy and educational opportunity to reach thousands of prospects for a relatively low cost. Editorial content is rightly perceived as highly credible and is necessarily more technical than the information conveyed by ads.
Given that value, it's surprising that there are very few building product manufacturers out there who are getting their fair share of PR. Why is that?
In large part, it's because PR is traditionally thought of as simply sending out news releases and photos. We prefer to think of it as "content development" in an industry where knowledge gives your sales prospects the power to become your customers.
It's a long and delicate process with no room for error. It takes weeks to negotiate back and forth with an editor to reach an accord on what's best for the client we represent and what's best for the reader, and then to pull a story together worthy of a leading architectural journal.
But when we finally send it out, it runs - often with iconic photos. It gets picked up elsewhere, it gets repeated, it gets linked to and it gets viewed.
In fact, we calculate a return on investment for our PR efforts that can be as much as five times higher than the return on an ad placement*. That's like getting a free ad, and then some!
Ads are irreplaceable because they perform a specific job. But in terms of sheer dollar-for-dollar return, PR content and the resulting media real estate you get with placement of a compelling feature story – is unbeatable.
When the results we can consistently achieve for your brand are so clear, why aren't you spending just a little to gain editorial coverage? Why aren't you getting your fair share?
What should you expect from a content campaign?
You should be actively trying to get editorial coverage - long-form feature stories - about your recent projects. You should be gathering the highest quality photos you can get your hands on, and you should already have pitched the angle of your story to the editor of the publication or website that your potential customers read.
You should have the architects you worked with on your latest project queued up to provide quotes about how great the product was to work with and how well it performed. You should have the contractor talking about the ease of installation and how it reduced costs. And don't forget about the distributor and what they have to say about their role and the support they offered through contractor training and just-in-time delivery. Whatever your story, the details add texture, interest and validity. They have to be there and they have to be right.
With all that in place, you have good reason to expect a nice big spread in a high-quality publication, lots of positive feedback and a positive impact on sales. Keep in mind, PR is a process. You must constantly be promoting your brand to the thought leaders in the media. You cannot take your foot off the gas because you never know where you'll hit the tipping point, the total accumulation of placements that causes your product to be specified.
Here are just some of the magazines where we placed feature stories in 2014:
- Architectural Products
- Architectural West
- Buildings Magazine
- Building Design+Construction
- Commercial Building Products
- The Construction Specifier
- Design & Build with Metal
- Doors & Hardware
- The Fabricator
- Fabric Architecture
- Floor Covering Installer
- Floor Trends
- The Flooring Contractor
- Glass Magazine
- Hardwood Floors Magazine
- Masonry Design
- Medical Construction & Design
- Metal Architecture
- Metal Construction News
- Metal Roofing
- Net Zero Buildings
- Plumbing Engineer
- Professional Roofing
- Retrofit Magazine
- Roofing Magazine
- Specialty Fabrics Review
- Water Quality Products
- Western Roofing Insulation & Siding
- The Wholesaler
- 9300 Contractor
Take a look at this website. It's a public site, but its the one-to-one vehicle we use to deliver the content we've developed collaboratively to the editors with whom we've worked.
Editors know that the material here is straight from the source. It has been thoroughly vetted, researched and approved all along the line. As a result, it gets picked up over and over again because it's good solid information written in an interesting and informative style.
This is just part of the service our PR clients receive for their investment, and it's one of the major reasons they get such a high return. It's tremendous leverage.
If you agree that you should be getting your fair share, call us and find out what we can do for you.
* When you place a full page ad, you pay the full-page rate, and in return you get one page of the magazine's real estate, generating a 1:1 ratio. When we place editorial features, we aim for at least a 2:1 ROI and often exceed 5:1.