For great PR, mine and refine, don’t just fabricate!

Many people take the view that to achieve great PR results they must manufacture or fabricate stories because their businesses or clients have no real content of interest to the audiences and media they want to target. This is particularly pertinent in B2B PR where products and services are often thought of as boring, especially where more mainstream media attention is concerned.

But in many cases this lack of raw materials is simply not true. More it’s the fact that people haven’t searched hard enough for the rich content within their businesses that can be utilised to build brand and raise awareness. Its often a case that more time is spent asking questions, testing ideas and discussing possibilities with clients rather than churning out mediocre PR. PR people and agencies in particular have a duty to leave no stone unturned in order to find the stories that lie within their clients’ bedrock. It’s just plain lazy to skim the surface and waste precious budgets always creating content from scratch.

At Skout we always seek to find and use our client’s most precious PR assets. Last week for our client vielife this took the form of a rich deposit of sleep data, collected from employees of vielife’s UK customers through its online health and wellbeing platform. We’re not talking some flimsy PR-led survey of just about 100 people here but nearly 40,000 genuine data records on sleep habits correlated with other important health issues.

Working with vielife’s medical experts and data analysts we helped to turn these raw materials into a story with relevance and appeal for a broad audience. Doing so removed the media shackles that often restrict B2B companies in the range and scope of coverage they can achieve. This, coupled with a well planned media strategy, enabled us to gain the ambitious outcomes we wanted for vielife – and all from existing untapped content.

So, starting with a Sunday exclusive, vielife’s sleep story took the whole of page six in The Observer’s April 1st edition. Other national, business and broadcast media followed last week including BBC Radio, Guardian Online, The Mail, The Express, City AM, Human Resources and People Management. Even corporates like Aviva and Silentnight got in on the act!

Most organisations are sitting on PR assets in the form of people, data, opinions, products and ideas that are the raw materials for great stories. They often fail to be mined and refined for an effective outcome.

What are the PR natural resources within your business? Why not spend an hour or so thinking about them and writing them down – have you utilised them effectively and what would it take to do so?

Rob Skinner

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