How and just why you will need to integrate PR into all marketing channels

David Linder

David Linder

MSc in Marketing from the University of Salford. Facebook Certified Planning Professional Facebook Certified Buying Professional
11 min read

Positive and negative PR campaigns make a difference brand equity and identity – figure out how to apply positive PR across touchpoints in the RACE customer lifecycle

It’s an over-all marketing myth that without PR (positive or negative) consumers won’t know who you’re and ways to help – wrong. Although effective PR could possibly be the make or break for smaller companies who would like to obtain name, vision and message out to the general public, larger brands have create a brand identity that keeps them noticed irrespective of ill-thought out publicity stunts and, sometimes, even the merchandise they provide.

Brand equity identifies the customer’s perception of a brandname name or company as opposed to the multitude of services or products they offer. Brands that successfully develop a strong online and offline brand equity includes: Apple, Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Netflix etc. It is possible to instantly identify them, even though you have no idea everything they provide.

However, solely counting on PR is really a rookie business mistake and poor brand storytelling practice – PR must be integrated with other offline and internet marketing tactics.

Other marketing channels, offline or online, might help brand visibility and reach. But, so how exactly does PR efficiently integrate right into a wider product launch campaign?

  • Using SEM to ensure your brand message achieves desired reach to focus on customers
  • Offline advertising (TV, print, events, and sponsorship) that follows exactly the same branding and design as online identity
  • Partnerships with affliates and influencers who share the vision / common fascination with your product to become brand ambassador
  • Creating a residential area for customers/members that put the clients first and portrays an inclusive brand community
  • Sharing positive values with customers; not merely providing them with what they want and want but showing them you value them and what they value too.

PR ought to be found in conjunction with other channels to optimize customer touchpoints over the RACE customer lifecycle model, developed by Smart Insights. PR is actually brand image and brand image sometimes appears across all internet marketing channels and offline tactics.

We’ll take an in-depth look at among the best, and worst, PR stunts from brands, how lousy PR make a difference your companies reputation and how negative brand identity with poor brand storytelling can drive customers away – it doesn’t matter how brands try to ‘fix’ the issue they’ve caused. We’ll also check out ways to integrate a confident PR image into other marketing channels to produce a brand identity that converts target audiences.

Traditional marketing (print) and guerrilla marketing

We’ll focus on the original marketing tactics as they are still relevant for several PR communications.

Having the proper message with the proper attitude is fantastic, but without strategy and planning, businesses will see it hard to attain their audience. Traditional pr announcements and publicity stunts like some guerrilla marketing tactics can only just get businesses up to now. Guerrilla marketing is ideal for smaller businesses which have little to no cover marketing, but don’t always supply the highest level of exposure.

Which is excatly why digital marketing is recommended by many brands wanting global exposure because the potential reach is far higher. They are able to include:

  • Street marketing (display promotional initiatives such as for example shopping trolly displays, flyers, public events etc.)
  • Wild posting

However, some guerilla marketing tactics could be ideal for SMEs and local businesses, but, without correct design branding, and the proper message, it’ll be hard to make a strong brand identity that is memorable. Potential prospects have to see your message and instantly know who it really is, ways to help and where they are able to purchase your product. This is often a offline shop, or an ecommerce store. The main element is having a definite look which may be distinguished between you as well as your competitor but is aligned and in keeping with other marketing channel designs.

Mercedes graffiti

Take for example this recent publicity stunt in Leeds, UK.

Excitement sparked whenever a mysterious Mercedes was spotted in a number of locations round the city with ‘stick ur job up ur arse’ and ‘worse boss ever’ graffiti scrawled around it. Initially, it appears like a disgruntled employee, nonetheless it was later discovered it had been a publicity stunt from the betting shop.

Having viewed the automobile and the graffiti onto it, can you know who was simply behind it? The most obvious choice will be the car manufacturer, Mercedes, however they later released a statement saying:

“[they] had seen the photos, but ‘it’s nothing related to us’.

This is an extremely bad exemplory case of a PR stunt. There is absolutely no branding, colours, design or message to associate it with a brandname. Passers-by are left scratching their head in wonder, going for a photograph, and carrying on making use of their day forgetting concerning the car within days or even hours.

This is poor integration of brand identity and a publicity stunt it doesn’t reach audiences, nor sends a note of product, service or brand awareness. Thus no positive brand equity is formed.

Search engine technique to reach market (SEO and PPC)

Now we’ll look at digital for audience reach. Good PR which sends the proper message must be aligned with good search engine marketing techniques. If your market has seen your offline advertising, or PR / partnerships on other sites, it is necessary that whenever they seek out you they not merely find you, however they recognize you as well as your message. Afterall, you do not want a possible client arriving at your ecommerce site and wondering if its the proper place. This confusion and self-doubt could mean the difference between a purchase or perhaps a high bounce rate.

Optimize your internet search engine SEO titles and meta descriptions showing your audience who you’re and that you will be, in fact, individuals they were searching for.

Apple dominate Google image seek out the term ‘Apple’. Their logo and online identity has surpassed the image visit a physical fruit apple. This brand identity online keeps users knowing who they’re and what they appear to be.

Apple Google search images

In line making use of their branding and company logo, their website leaves no question concerning who they’re. Their logo is sleek and simplistic therefore is their web page design, that is mirrored in every the campaigns and PR events.

Pop-up stores and events

This kind of PR differs from B2B and B2C. Whereas a B2C ecommerce store/brick and motar may pop-up at an area event, sports event, etc. B2B companies will undoubtedly be targeting their event pop-ups at corporate events and conferences etc. to get leads.

But for the initial instance, let’s have a look at when Smart Insights visited TFM making use of their pop-up stall for B2B audiences.

TFM Smart Insights

As with any pop-up stores/events, it is important that the image you portray and the message you send is aligned with other marketing channels.

Yes, you need to capture passers-by’s eyes and additional build relationships them, but if you should create new visuals and design etc. to achieve that you then probably have to also consider redesigning your website. If it generally does not capture people’s eyes because they walk past, it will not capture people’s attention for the initial 8 seconds of these attention span when considering your website online.

We ensured our pop-up designs matched that of our entire site and brand identity. The images used may also be entirely on our site. Together, it forms a cohesive brand identity that can’t be missed or misinterpreted for another brand.

The message we send reflects that of most our other marketing campaigns too, with positive pr (face-to-face and online) in addition to a brand identity that sets us apart, we are able to never supply the wrong message.

Social Media PR

Wendy’s springs in your thoughts when you think about brands on social media that stretch the boundaries of customer services and relations. However, Wendy’s is really a perfect exemplory case of how social media, consistent with brand image and personality, result in a viral tweets and global exposure.

Other brands are needs to adopt a ‘no-nonsense’ method of their Facebook updates and their daily tweets. That is interesting as a recent study by Sprout Social discovered that brand personality on social media affects buyer decisions. Consumers preferred a far more authentic and honest brand personality (86%) over snarky comments or political content (33%)

brand personality on social

One of my favourite adverts, which went viral a fews years back, is by the Dollar Shave Club. Now, that is an American brand (soon to be arriving at the united kingdom) and I reside in the united kingdom, they target the male audience, and I’m a female. Yet, I saw their advert and subsequently follow them on social media. Am I a 1st purchase or perhaps a target customer? No. But that isn’t my point. The main point is that I understand about them plus they weren’t even targeting me, so take into account the many males in america they did target and so are now recognizable making use of their online brand image…

They created a distinctive customer experience, and when you are section of their monthly subscription you’re in on the ‘joke’ everyday annoyances they poke fun at within their advert. They created a special ‘community’ for customers.

Let’s have a look:

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Their PR is whimsical, raw and honest. Their approach on social media also reflects this – they stay true to brand image and in so doing they create an online brand identity that is easily recognizable. Their tweets don’t always promote their products and, sometimes, are not linked to their brand at all, but it’s fun and engaging which will keep their followers in the high numbers. It’s about seeing individuals and the faces behind the brand and being area of the community.

Finding the proper influencer

Many social media agencies and consultants have said that 2018 will dsicover an enormous rise in the firms that spend money on influencer marketing to market or become advocates of these brand. A long time ago mega-celebrity influencers promoting cosmetics on commercials, however now influencer marketing has generated a storm on social media.

However, influencer marketing isn’t for each business and really should be decided if it fits with brand image and equity.

Common influencer marketing mistakes that result in disaster include:

  • Choosing an influencer because they have a big following
  • Choosing influencers that avoid the merchandise or service and do not have confidence in the brand message
  • Are big celebrities but aren’t likable to the general public and alienate your customers
  • An influencer that’s susceptible to bad press and conflict with media

In a previous article on our blog, we discuss 4 influencer marketing campaigns that went wrong. And we see this with many brands who try to utilize the influencer market.

Take a glance at these influencer posts that not align with brand equity, or show they’re positive brand advocates.

Oprah Winfrey microsoft surface UK reality TV star, Jessica Shears, soon came off air and started promoted different products in instagram posts and was quick to label herself an ‘influencer’ on her behalf Instagram bio.

Instagram Influencer

Those who label themselves as influencers are less inclined to gain product engagement because users know they’re selling products for companies and so are incorrect advocates or believers of the brand/product.

Having an influencer who promotes multiple company products won’t show the real value of one’s brand identity and finally, your post are certain to get lost in a blast of other posts promoting other products and competitors.

Simple steps to developing a successful influencer strategy:

  1. Think about your brand message and what this says to your audience.
  2. Are there any social media users who already, organically, post/review your services or products and can turn into a brand advocate?
  3. Choose a person who shares your companies values, vision and message to the general public. (Those in NFP or charitable sector may choose to choose somebody who is well known for charity based work)
  4. Size of followers isn’t always key – someone will a lesser following than people who have a 100k-1 million follower base might have more loyal followers that are likely to pay attention to them
  5. Having brand advocates gives a geniune feel – let them write their very own posts, within their own words rather than scripted captions – users will know if their opinion is authentic or not.

Have you considered user-generated content?

UGC is the greatest influencer campaign you will get. What’s much better than visitors to prove the standard of your brand, service, and products than past and current customers?

One brand who do that well is Anastasia Beverley Hills, who like and retweet customer who share the merchandise they’ve bought and how they’ve applied their costmetics. Not merely does this create great content that shares make-up tips, but it addittionally shows ordinary people buying, wearing and loving their products.

 ABH Twitter - User generated content

By liking and retweeting tweets sent by customers, it turns up on the feed and user’s home feed. I see constantly ‘real people’ (i.e. not celebrities) sharing how wonderful ABH cosmetics are, and the more folks see this on the feed the much more likely they are to get their very own.

Overall, this builds an agreeable, customer-centric online brand image where customers can share their makeup looks and tips and feel a part of a more substantial community of customers.

Whether you select a complete influencer online marketing strategy or UGC to greatly help promote your brand message on social media, make certain it builds a confident brand equity you want to be known for and promotes the values and vision of one’s company.

When a brandname goes viral, for all your wrong reasons!

Let’s take for example United Airlines. Lately their brand was on every news outlet in Western Countries for a video that went viral whenever a person in their airplane security staff forcibly removed a passenger off an overbooked airplane.


(I’ve not shown the video out of respect since it has scenes that lots of readers could find disturbing). If you want to start to see the video involved, you will see it here on Youtube.


United_Airlines_Logo

This is really a time when United Airlines had a need to get yourself a Crisis Communications strategy together, quickly, which:

  1. Apologised for all those involved and the ones who witnessed the incident
  2. Promoted United Airlines the direction they wanted to be looked at and represented
  3. Offered a brandname image / identity that may be taken forward in the future

What happened on the United Airlines airplane resulted in an uproar and fully exploded across social media. However, where this is an ample situation for United Airlines CEO, David Deo, to empathize along with his passenger’s unnecessary violent removal, showing staff, customers and the wider global population that his brand had consumer important values at the forefront of these message, his statement afterward was unapologetic and praised staff for ‘following protocol’.

As Forbes headlined, United Airlines ‘became probably the most hated airline in a single day’.

Bad PR that goes viral is completely detrimental to a brands image and identity. Sometimes, one bad video, complaint, viral video on social media or badly considered campaign can’t be forgotten, neither could it be forgiven.

Brand equity vs brand awareness

Global businesses like Apple, Google, Amazon along with other online SaaS companies such as for example Netflix have distinct branding and advertising, which, arguably, make sure they are stick out from the crowd, but do they?

In a recently available study, it had been discovered that only 85% of respondents could correctly identify Amazon without the logo or hand out reference, and only 78% could identify Google. However, those that identified wrong simply didn’t know who it had been rather than misinterpreting it from another brand or competitor.

amazon_logo apple-logo Google__G__Logo

So, online identity is essential for customers to learn that they’ve landed on the proper site, but brand equity isn’t solely linked to brand awareness.

Conclusion

When building brand equity, take into account the consumer and the audience you’re attempting to target. Brand awareness is excellent, it means sometimes known and in the center of important conversations, but customer attitude is arguably more important.

Make your brand known, but additionally someone they would like to buy from/be an associate of. If your values don’t align together with your target audience, you are going to think it is hard to convert them right into a 1st purchase customer and also maybe impossible to help keep them as a repeat/loyal customer.

David Linder

David Linder

MSc in Marketing from the University of Salford. Facebook Certified Planning Professional Facebook Certified Buying Professional

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