I run a UK based jewellery company specialising in bridal jewellery. We have a turnover of circa £4m per annum. We advertise using Adwords, Youtube, and run active facebook campaign. However, we don't do any proper PR activity, so it is an obvious gap in our marketing strategy. I realise I could engage a PR agency, or I could advertise in the PR press and look to employ our own PR person. However, I am not clear on what my PR 'objectives' should be. I also don't know what a good result would look like, or how much I realistically need to budget for. So far, I have been skeptical of the value of PR. Realistically, we are not Coca-Cola or Panasonic, and I am not sure I have the appetite to afford the size of campaign to try to build a large scale 'brand'. Hence to date, I have focused on direct response marketing with adwords etc. Some possible avenues which might work and which I would include in the PR category is; * Celebrity endorsements * Featured products in bridal magazines * Press releases (I realise these don't generally work) * Events * Local awareness campaign in local papers As you can see, I am bit confused on the best way forward. So I am looking for an expert in PR, who I can pay to give me some guidance on this topic. Once I find a PR expert I can trust, I would like to discuss with the the following questions; i) Can PR generate a measurable increase in sales for our business type and niche? ii) What is the minimum amount I should budget to test if it works? iii) Should I employ somebody or use an agency? iv) What is the right PR strategy I should set from the start Thanks for reading!
Your suspicions and instincts as to whether or not you're a good fit for a PR campaign are correct. PR (online or offline) is best served when you have something unique or cool, of if you have some sort of inspiring story behind the people (or a person) of the company. Bridal Jewelry is just not very PR worthy in and of itself.
If you did run some sort of promotion, then you could run some PR around it. Write and send out a release, contact local and national outlets and "HOPE" they deem your story worthy.
IMHO, PR is very unpredictable and difficult to measure the impact on sales. PR efforts fail. They don't always bear fruits. You need to be able to absorb that hit on your bottom line if you are going to do PR. You can hit a home run of course, but you're more likely to strike out.
You should not ignore PR, but I don't see the need to hire a major PR agency. You should use PR strategically. Use it when you have something cool to announce or promote. Use it ongoing, with the idea that you're going to also get better organic search visibility. Use it because its good for establishing your brand. Use it because it draws traffic.
But don't use it just as a direct revenue channel. You'll be dissapointed. Basically, use it because of the many secondary benefits it has.