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Best Use of PR/Media Coverage Award Winner 2013

Posted On - 19/05/2014 15:47:45

Best practice #1: cultivate relationships with the media

People in the media gladly talk to anyone who's willing to talk to themEarly on Garry learned a truth about local media: it's starved of stories.

"I quickly learnt people in the media gladly talk to anyone who's willing to talk to them" he says." So I made the effort to follow as many local reporters as I could find on Twitter. This was easy, most reporters follow each other, so looking through their followers linked me through to their colleagues."

Garry also tweeted these people now and again so they wouldn't forget who he was.

These vital ‘social' behaviours are at the root of Garry's success. It meant he found and connected with PCR media staff. It meant he was building relationships.

Best practice #2: play PR for the long haul

Because we had become known to the editors, we eventually got asked if we would like to take part in the Indie Profile section of the magazine"We'd been making ourselves known to PCR for a number of years, by attending events, making the effort to talk to them, and communicate with them via twitter" says Garry.

And he was doing absolutely the right thing. By investing time in developing a reputation for a consistent, informed point of view, not just issuing the odd rant on a particular issue, he was building his credibility and establishing himself as a commentator.

"Because we had become known to the editors, we eventually got asked if we would like to take part in the Indie Profile section of the magazine" he says.

Best practice #3: start selling you, stop flogging products

Sage advice: pick a local charitable cause, run a fund-raiser and donate it the profitsGary's PR man gave him sage advice early on. Having had a few editorials published, Garry found he hadn't much left with a chance of getting published.

"He suggested we pick a local charitable cause, support it by doing an event and donate the profits from the day" he says. "We organised balloon displays, refreshments, got the local brass band to stage a free concert and spread the word."

Gary's media contacts gave him publicity before and after the event. "We announced what we had raised, and as a bonus, the organisers of the local charity have supported us since. The total cost to us was a couple of hundred quid - not much cash for the amount of publicity and support we gained."

Garry's relationship with the charity and the PR it generates continues to this day.

Has winning the Award helped?

Trade PR lets existing and potential new suppliers see that we are a professionally run organisationWhile the coverage raised his channel profile winning the Award itself raised it further still.

He secure covered in the Teeside Evening Gazette so reinforcing his well-established profile in the locality.

It's also helped Garry open accounts with new suppliers as well. "It lets suppliers see we are a professionally run organisation" he says.

Will Garry be entering next year's Awards?

"Yes", he says without hesitation. "I want to win other categories. I didn't put in enough effort last time. My window display is now better and will be better again so I can enter this year."

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