By Ashley Carr, Founder, Neo PR
Getting your sales message right and letting your potential market know about it can seem like an obvious high priority, but when you are up to your neck in muck and bullets, somehow it always seems to come a poor second place in the day-to-day priorities.
In our ever increasingly busy world where we try to cram so much into our working day, it can be all too easy to do the simple things first and leave the big things until later.
But regurgitating that old proposal; making cosmetic changes to the web site that actually needs a complete update; and playing lip service to social media, is all you have time for now, right? Or is not having the time to do it just part of the problem?
The trouble is, you are probably really good at selling what you’ve got and then delivering it and it’s easy to get bogged down in this relentless cycle without ever lifting your head up long enough to shout your successes from the rooftop - after all, marketing is not your day job is it?
But you’re good at messages one on one, just lousy at marketing execution right?
This is, of course, why we outsource those things not core to the business we are in – accounts; HR; Payroll etc. But what of marketing, messaging, and sales lead generation? Why do so many businesses attempt to turn their hand to marketing with neither the time to do it justice, nor the skills to do it properly?
It’s unfortunately endemic in all of us – it seems an anathema to pay for something we know, given the time, we could have a go at ourselves!
This is where outsourcing to an agency can actually help. An agency will be the catalyst for galvanising thoughts and the mechanism for generating action – and if you give them enough latitude – they’ll do all the legwork and make it happen for you too!
Just engaging with an agency ‘forces’ you to find the time to sit down and talk about marketing, knowing that you won’t be responsible for the output and outcomes (you’ve just outsourced that bit remember). And it will nearly always lead to crystallising those thoughts you’ve been having about messaging that you’ve not got around to telling anyone about yet.
PR pervades all aspects of your business (if it’s done right of course) by generating the core message and the critical sales-support content that is relevant to your prospects – it turns lots of features and functions – the ‘what’, into benefits – the ‘why’.
The prospects are coming – look busy!
Messaging and content generation though important, is not really much good without execution. You may well have a cracking customer story and the odd endorsement, but if your last website update; news story, or tweet was a month ago, what message does that really send to your prospect?
You really need to be actively engaging with someone who arrives at your digital door today – not in a week or a month’s time. They may be generous and give you a day to respond or take notice, but they may want something from you all together quicker – remember your competitors are only a click away.
This is where you PR agency – those masters of spin – will be generating weekly, daily, or even intra-day content, that engages with the prospect to get them into your sales funnel.
I can take it from here guys
Once in your sales funnel, you’ve got them ok? If only it were that simple. Now you need to move them along the sales pipeline and keep them engaged with your evolving messaging – reminding them of the very reason they stopped at your digital door in the first place.
Your PR agency will be proactively repurposing press coverage, client stories, and thought leadership – as well as generating features and responses to articles – that will feed the regular website news updates; the pithy blogs; and the interesting social dialogue to keep the prospects up to date, interested, and engaged whilst you wrestle them to ground.
The economic upturn waits for no one
A decent PR agency should be able to get your content, messaging, and marketing up and running in a few short weeks, wooing and then entertaining your prospects for you along the way. You don’t have to do it all yourself anymore, and you don’t have to feel guilty for never quite getting around to do it justice. The time to get some help in is now – the economic upturn waits for no one.