5 PR and Marketing Resolutions for the New Year
The pandemic has forever changed the way businesses communicate and conduct marketing activities. Across industries, live events have been cancelled or performed remotely, publications have folded and new ones have emerged, and reporters and editors that cover certain industries are changing roles at a rapid pace.
Remote PR professionals adjusted to the trials of the work-from-home environment quite easily because most of us were already in this situation permanently. What changed was that our clients were also working from home, as were the reporters, editors and analysts that cover our clients’ industries. Over the past two years, we have become intimately familiar with the day-to-day ongoings inside of people’s homes via Zoom and other video platforms. As we move into 2022, it looks to be more of the same.
Adjusting to the New Normal
As we adjust to this ongoing “new normal,” it is a good time to make some resolutions to ensure every effort counts. Here are five PR and marketing resolutions to help make 2022 your most impactful year yet:
- Update your media and analyst list. January is a great time to make sure your media and analyst list is fresh. You may have been updating it piecemeal throughout the year, but looking at it holistically will help you spot holes as well as determine if there are people on the list that your company has simply outgrown. Take a close look at publications, contact information and coverage areas to see if any need to be updated. Follow sites like Cision’s Media Moves and Agility PR’s Press Moves to keep up with the latest changes.
- Build relationships. Remote PR professionals need to spend time learning about their audience, e.g., the people they are pitching on a regular basis. Pick one reporter or editor every week and learn more about them. What topics have they been covering recently? What social platforms are they most active on, and what do they say on them? Do they have a “voice” or do they simply retweet their own articles? How do they like to be approached? When your research is complete, and you’ve determined they’re a good fit for your company’s PR and marketing efforts, pitch them with some compelling news or feature topic.
- Put video content atop your to-do list. According to Hubspot, video is the most commonly used form of content marketing, Traditional content marketing, such as blogs, infographics and case studies, trailed video slightly, indicating that these are still very popular with buyers. Podcasting is also on the rise; in less than three years, podcast listening in the United States has increased by more than 60%, Hubspot says. Make it a priority to develop more video and alternative content in 2022 and watch your marketing efforts reap the rewards.
- Just say no. There are lots of media opportunities out there for companies, but not all of them are worth pursuing. Is that “quick hit” a good opportunity or a huge time suck? Just landing an interview or a contributed article isn’t enough. Understanding if the outlet will give your company enough eyeballs to make the effort worthwhile means doing some extra homework. While it might be a PR “win,” if no one sees the content, is it truly valuable to your company?
- Amp up your newsjacking. There are natural storylines that occur every day in the news. Knowing how your company fits into these news cycles is key to getting coverage. Can you make a compelling pitch that ties into one (or more) of these trends? If so, reach out to the editor, and do it quickly. Be aware that there’s a difference between newsjacking and responding to a missed opportunity. Reporters rarely want to read pitches that say, “I know you covered my company’s competitor, now cover my company!” Your pitch must truly differentiate your company AND explain why the reporter should be writing about the challenge you solve.
Companies will continue to face the challenges of the COVID pandemic in 2022. As PR professionals, it’s a good time to review your clients’ marketing plans and make some resolutions to ensure they are putting their best foot forward in 2022 and beyond.