For any organisation, PR should be a key part of your marketing strategy – what industry, sector or market you are in.
“Public Relations, or ‘PR’, is all about the way organisations communicate with the public, promote themselves, and build a positive reputation and public image. … PR professionals try to influence the media to represent their organisation positively and communicate key messages.”
The Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA)
Effective PR can enhance reputation, develop understanding, raise profile and result in more business, sales and profits. For a charity it can bring increased donations, volunteers and funds.
The world of PR incorporates a variety of elements, from attendance at public events to regular newsletters. Pieces of content such as blog posts, case studies and social media are vital to grow awareness of products and services, particularly among customers, patrons and others who already have some awareness of the company or organisation.
However, I want to focus on the simple press release. Successful press releases feature in press and appropriate online publications, potentially reaching the wider general public and people who otherwise might never have heard of the organisation. Therefore, the press release is essential for cost-effective yet powerful profile raising and, in particular, improving public image.
I have created a range of press releases for more than seven years and for a mixture of clients including The West Midlands School Leaders Annual Conference, Opening Doors & Venues and Kinder Pocock. For now I want to focus on one client as an example of how effective press releases can be.
JERICHO is a small charity making a large difference in Birmingham. JERICHO changes lives through enterprise, seeking out and engaging people who have experienced significant barriers to being fulfilled, skilled and employed. To help them, JERICHO provides real work experience in one of its social enterprises, combined with an individually-tailored package of personal development support for each client.
For two years I provided a package of PR and marketing services including a series of professional, well-written press releases, which transformed the public image of JERICHO and significantly raised their profile across the city and beyond.
At the time Richard Beard, Chief Executive, Jericho Foundation said “we have been working with Stella from 58 Communications for over a year now. In that time she has helped us to completely transform our social media and online presence and significantly raise our profile as a leading social enterprise through a series of creative and professional press releases, newsletters and related PR initiatives. I would highly recommend her to similar organisations wishing to improve their visibility and public image.”
Recently, JERICHO once more contacted me to ask for my help with PR. They had won a prestigious Centre for Social Justice Award and wanted to share the news. This was an impressive achievement – part of an annual, high profile ceremony (in partnership with The Telegraph), and announced by Bear Grylls.
Of course I was pleased to create and circulate a press release on behalf of JERICHO. Gratifyingly, it was published by a number of widely-read local publications; including one by the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce and also national charity publications such as Charity Today. Several of these publications have also circulated the news to their comprehensive mailing lists (the BCC alone has 15,000 recipients). In all, JERICHO was thrilled with how far we were able to spread their good news. In addition to raising awareness of this significant award, even more people now know about JERICHO’s amazing grassroots, poverty-fighting mission to get people back onto their feet and into work.
Stella Broster (Marketing Consultant) & Steve Broster (Video Production) are 58 communications; promoting organisations with innovative video & online content.
Also providing marketing planning, content writing, copywriting, PR & mentoring. 58 communications is recommended by SMEs, charities and schools.
Stella Broster 27.01.21