Many business and marketing consulting practices misunderstand publicity and its value. A sound publicity campaign can be central to the success of your strategic marketing plan. With today’s fixation on 24/7 news, media sources are eager to get fresh insights, new faces and interesting stories. While publicity is relatively easy to acquire, your goal must be to start the publicity ball rolling and once it is moving keep the momentum going forward.
Consultants who succeed with publicity campaigns realize the value is in the recognition and trust that the exposure generates. Name recognition can lead your consultancy to the promised land where lead after lead abounds. A good publicity campaign boosts your firm’s credibility and will create responses.
Anyone doubting the impact of publicity need only look back to the 2008 Presidential Campaign. With one innocent question directed to President-Elect Barack Obama, Joe “The Plumber” moved from a relative unknown to center stage representing John McCain throughout the remainder of the campaign.
Imagine what your consultancy could do with that type of publicity. Publicity is a low cost form of marketing exposure that requires constant grooming. Not every consulting practice has the resources to consistently create and carry on a publicity campaign, but the ones that do it well have loads of clients and boundless leads.
The Beginning of Publicity Campaign
When measuring the fit between a publicity campaign and your consultancy, you must determine whether your practice can benefit from a publicity campaign. Not all consultancies specialize in fields that are publicity conscious.
Assuming your practice can reap rewards from increased exposure, you must then analyze your resources for creating and sustaining a publicity campaign. An old standby of the publicity business is that there is no such thing as bad publicity. In today’s media world, that is not necessarily the case. A bad publicity campaign can damage your firm’s reputation and hurt your credibility.
Again, look at the impact of the Katie Couric interview with Sarah Palin during the 2008 campaign. That interview went a long way toward showing Palin’s relative inexperience. Public opinion polls quickly went to work and showed the negative results. When your consultancy is in the media or on stage, prospective clients are listening and watching. If your consultancy cannot commit the time, energy and resources to a well organized and carefully considered public relations media plan, you should not get in the game.