Stories connect with us in books, movies and television. Business is no different. We developed a content plan for two Chick-fil-A restaurants in Volusia County, Fla. The plan coincided with a targeted Facebook campaign that generated buzz and in-store traffic. See the work here.
4 Components of a Good Elevator Pitch
This is the next post of a series on launching a digital platform.
Have you ever been caught off guard when someone asks, “What do you do?” When launching your platform, it is important to define your platform goals. One way to do this is being prepared to present your idea, product, business, etc to anyone you come in contact with, online or in person.
A great exercise is to develop an elevator pitch. This is a brief summary of your product offering, including your target market and value proposition.
What do you think of when you hear the word platform? Other than literal meaning, you may think of a political candidate that stands for certain ideals and hopefully brings to the table relevant experience. Most political candidates try to distance themselves from those running against them by displaying how they are different or unique through the combination of their experience and ideology.
In today’s digital world, a platform means exactly the same thing. We all have a unique background and experience that when combined with passion and/or skills, can set you apart from a noisy world. You may be the CEO of a global company, a small business owner or a stay-at-home mom who is passionate about raising her family. Regardless, you are unique and probably have something important to share. Now, it is easier than ever to let your voice be heard.
We all have a unique background and experience that when combined with passion and/or skills, can set you apart from a noisy world.”
As I am writing this, I am in the middle of building my own platform. My background is in small business, agriculture, marketing, public relations and personal finance. I am passionate about all of these areas, and my goal is to communicate that via my platform to help others succeed.
One of the best resources for this is Michael Hyatt’s book, Platform. I highly recommend it. Michael discusses five reasons why now is the best time for you to build a platform.
Competition has never been greater. The Internet is a great place, but there is a lot of noise. Building a proper platform will help you to find your audience, and speak to them through the noise.
People are more distracted than ever. There are more media channels now than ever. A great platform will make it easy for your followers to engage with you.
Visibility. The word platform is a metaphor for stage. The various components of your digital platform will allow you to be seen by your tribe, which is the goal.
Amplification. As in the stage metaphor, platforms in theaters, churches and auditoriums are built with quality acoustics in mind, to project the spears message. It today’s society, the modern media – especially social media – is a great tool to accomplish the same task.
Connection. In traditional media, speakers can connect with an audience through a television show, talk show host, concert, etc. This is one-way communication. With social media, it is easy to establish a two-way communication with your followers, causing a deeper and meaningful connection.
This post will be the first of a six part series on building a platform. In the next several posts, we will discuss the following components of a quality platform:
Develop a wow product
Prepare to launch
Build a homebase
Expand your reach
What are you truly passionate about? How can you turn that into a digital platform?
Traditionally, the business world hasn’t shown the love to PR as it has to advertising. U.S. companies spend $150 billion annually on advertising and only $5 billion on public relations according to eMarketer and PRSA respectively. In popular culture, ad executives are immortalized in the media such as powerful characters like Mad Men’s Don Draper who positions Kodak’s slide projector for success by branding it the “Carousel.”
However, if Don Draper was not a fictional character and were alive today, he might give PR a stronger consideration, maybe over advertising. Why? Because everyone is in the PR business already, thanks to social media. The practice of PR harnesses social media better than any other business function.
It doesn’t take long to realize the viral weight of PR today. Last year, I was lucky enough to arrange an interview between a client and The Wall Street Journal. The client was interviewed as a source, but it was never published in print, only online. However, that article likely spread to several other individuals via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.
Another example comes from the late, great Steve Jobs, who knew the power of PR when he famously started Apple product launch events. He gathered the most influential media, those who were passionate about Apple products such as bloggers and tech writers, and unveiled new products, knowing they would digitally spread the message in front of strategic audiences.
Here are four reasons why PR is now getting more respect, thanks to social media:
Effects of PR are now measured to a greater extent than ever before in history. Reporting on the effectiveness of a press mention used to be limited to clipping it from a newspaper and showing the clip to the boss. Now anyone can track how many times an article is being shared on social platforms like Facebook and Twitter for free.
Social media can drive more human communications. Rather than blindly pitching thousands of people hoping for a 1% response rate, public relations pros can deeply research and build strong relationships with the journalists most likely to be interested in the companies they represent. This kind of interaction is only recently possible due to the very high percentage of journalists on social media.
PR departments are now tasked with creating branded content and spending significant amounts of money on platforms that increase distribution for content such as Facebook’s Boosted Posts and Twitter’s Promoted Tweets.
Public relations now has meaningful data to influence big decisions. There was a time when customer feedback came only through focus groups, surveys and customer support calls. It now floods in through social media, which is tracked primarily by PR departments. A PR executive with a strong command of this data can influence high-level decisions on product, market positioning and more.
PR is about to enter its Golden Age. Most of the latest innovations of media, including social media, play to the strengths of PR as opposed to advertising. Who knows, maybe there will be a hit TV show about the Golden Age of PR.
What are some steps you can take to build up your communications platform via PR and social media?