Celebrate National Storytelling Week by writing a Press Release to promote your business

January 4, 2013

Once upon a time most of us were read bedtime stories by our parents, grandparents, older siblings or on occasions the babysitter. In my case, my Great Aunts read to me copiously as an infant and in particular I remember Auntie Jenny reading me a Paddington Bear book one night, which I can recall I found side splittingly hilarious. We both laughed uncontrollably and the resonance of that experience led to my love of reading as a child. To supplement bedtime stories, BBC1 in the 1960s and 1970s broadcast a daily programme called “Jackanory”, where a celebrity would read a novel to “Children’s Hour” viewers over five days.

Those formative childhood years taught me the power of storytelling, which has remained with me in adult life and no doubt guided me in the direction of being a PR consultant & Blog writer. My background details can be found here……. http://www.rhetoric-artofpersuasion.com/about/

Story telling is an art, ranging from the great fantasy novels by JK Rowling, Roald Dahl, CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien through to PR companies, who create PR stories through press releases, articles, editorial and advertorials that have an inventive angle or hook. So Rhetoric PR invites parents to involve their kids in National Storytelling Week 26 January – 2 February 2013. And we invite parents who are business owners to give some thought to the stories that they can develop about their companies in 2013 in order to promote their business to existing and prospective clients through the internet, print and broadcast media ( ie TV and radio ) or social media ( Twitter, Facebook, Linked In, You Tube etc ).

The good news is that you do not have to be JK Rowling to write a Press Release. Every company / business has a story to tell about it’s history, a landmark anniversary, new product launch, executive appointment etc. If you wish to construct a Press Release yourself, here are ten handy tips on how to write an effective press release…….. http://www.rhetoric-artofpersuasion.com/services/press-releases/top-ten-tips-on-writing-an-effective-press-release/

Alternatively if you wish Rhetoric PR to write and distribute a Press Release on your behalf, then take advantage of our £39-99 Special Half Price Introductory Offer by clicking on http://www.rhetoric-artofpersuasion.com/   OR e-mailing…. simon@rhetoric-artofpersuasion.com

To find out more about author of this article, Simon Sterland……. http://www.rhetoric-artofpersuasion.com/about/

Footnote – National Storytelling Week is organized by The Society for Storytelling, which was was established in 1993. The Society’s aim was to promote the ancient art of storytelling. The Society is open to anyone with a love and passion for storytelling. Whether you are a storyteller or just someone who loves to listen to a well told tale! People from all over the UK get involved and it’s an enriching experience of bonding and bringing people together. For more details and info on National Storytelling Week……. http://www.sfs.org.uk/national-storytelling-week

 

Magnificent Seven Top Tips for Promoting your Business on Facebook

September 19, 2012

Facebook can be a very effective tool for all types of businesses from blue chip corporates to small to medium sized businesses / enterprises ( smb’s / sme’s ) to reach and build a dialogue and rapport with their audience. Here are a “Magnificent Seven” Tips to help businesses to create a Facebook profile.

1)  Create a Facebook Fan Page

The first step is to start a Facebook fan page. The Facebook fan page should be designed to promote your business or a specific venture / project.. The Facebook Fan Page is easy to sign up to and create. Once you have filled in the Profile section, simply promote through your company communications media ie E-mails, your website or any other social media profile you may have such as Twitter, Google+ or LinkedIn.

2)  Create a Facebook Event

Events can attract potential followers and therefore prospective customers who don’t have a savoir faire for the digital world. An event is the perfect opportunity to encourage these “Luddites” to join your Facebook fan page or visit your website. Host the event and give away promotional items or products to those that attend.

3)  Advertise on Facebook

Facebook offers a sophisticated advertising platform with a wealth of features and filters that allows businesses to target the precise person you wish to market to. Focusing your advertising campaign not only lets you keep the costs to a minimum but you’ll also find people that are far more likely to take action because you are avoiding a blanket saturation approach.

4)  Create a Facebook Group

Groups differ from Fan Pages and Events; they’re more like a collective behind a lobbying cause or consumer trend . A Facebook group can take on any shape and form; people can easily ‘like’ a Facebook group as it can relate to just about any broad or niche topic. For example, you could create a Facebook group related to your industry and / or marketplace. On your group page, you could share valuable information which would, in turn, get people interested in your personal brand.

5)  Have a Promotion or Competition and Link to Facebook

Why not have a Promotion or Competition, which you host on your website and promote through social media. Direct traffic to your Facebook page as a pre-requisite or qualifier for winning the prize ie have people sign up as their “entry” for the contest. Make the process as straightforward as possible, by removing the barriers of entry for your participants will greatly grow your Facebook following – make it simple as clicking a button for people to enter and share. By adding a further requirement for all people to further share the promotion / competition on their own Facebook profiles or other social media accounts, you can thereby create viral marketing for your promotion / competition and Facebook Page.

6)  Give away a free prize through Facebook

In order to capture data and Facebook followers, introduce an online incentive and promote it on a Facebook landing page. Create something such as an e-book or report that is of interest to your audience and give it away, for free, in exchange for someone following you on Facebook. To further improve your opt-in rate, add an email newsletter opt-in box to virtually guarantee that you gain a follower.

7)  Add a Facebook Widget to your Website

Finally, add a Facebook widget to your website. Since people won’t know about your Facebook profile, fan page, event, etc, they need to be alerted in some fashion and this can be easily achieved by adding the Facebook widget or symbol to your website. Add the widget to your sidebar above-the-fold so that it is permanently visible.

 

Five top tips to help enhance impact and effectiveness of E-mail Marketing Campaigns

August 12, 2012

Here are 5 quick tips that you can implement in your E-mail Marketing Campaign to enhance it’s impact and effectiveness, ultimately leading to improved sales!!

No 1  Brand your E-maiIs

Remember that your branding, company logo and important messages should be visible in the email preview pane. The size of the preview pane varies between email clients but keeping this information in the top 400 pixels is the received wisdom. I literally received an E-mail yesterday from a services provider without any form of branding – as such I was less inclined to take the content of the e-mail or the company as seriously as I would have done with a logo attached.

No 2  Always include a Call To Action

Don’t be afraid to tell the recipients what you want them to do. Spoonfeed them their reaction / action. Do you want them to purchase a product or service from your website? Sign up to an event? Call you? Instruct the recipient as to their next step with a direct Call to Action!!

No 3  Test the E-mail Marketing Campaign

E-mails are incredibly easy to test. Some email marketing services even have testing built in. Consider testing these facets / aspects-

· Subject lines

· ‘From’ names

· The amount of copy you use

· Layout of the email

· Use of images

No 4  Always Personalise each E-mail

Be prepared to go that extra mile by personalizing each E-mail with a Christian or surname. Hopefully your database already has this information about your clients or prospective clients. If not, ask a junior member of staff to phone up each company to ascertain the name of a key decision maker in that organisation. Your emails will get a much better response and reception, if the recipient feels like they are receiving a personalised communication rather than a blanket mailshot sent to all and sundry!!.

No 5  Establish an E-mail Marketing Campaign Hierarchy

You should treat recipients on your mailing list differently based on their responses and interaction with previous emails you have sent. Try sending a following up email to all the recipients you know opened or clicked your last email. These people are the ones that are most engaged with your communication, and open rates, click through rates (CTR) and conversions will be higher when you make this distinction and tailor your follow up approach, whether by phone or e-mail accordingly

 

Top Three Tips to help businesses create effective & successful Content Marketing

July 12, 2012

What makes content “good” is partly a subjective call, but there are criteria and guidelines that will give your website content a universal appeal. There’s a big difference between content marketing and an entertaining blog. Content should always be viewed in the context of your company marketing strategy. Here are three fundamental components of effective content marketing:

No 1   Make it entertaining and informative

Just because you find your business, product or service interesting, doesn’t necessarily mean that others will automatically enthuse about it in the same way!! No one owes you their attention. You have to earn the interest, attention and respect of your prospective audience. To this end, your website content and marketing literature content needs to engage with your audience, by tapping into the desires and needs of your existing and prospective customers.

Therefore write content that’s entertaining and interesting. Create content that benefits the reader ie by offering tips that might might help them solve a problem. Also make sure your style and formatting is audience-friendly. No one wants to read long, unbroken paragraphs, even if the writing is high calibre. Use plenty of subheads, white space, and a clear, legible font.

Finally ensure that headlines, if not clever, at least convey clarity. Ensure the headline communicates how the reader will benefit from reading that piece of content.

No 2   Make it strategic

Not all entertaining, readable content will move a prospect closer to becoming a customer. It doesn’t matter how many Facebook “Likes” you have, if you are not communicating the benefits of doing business with you, then this is merely an exercise in vanity.

This is where professional copywriting skills will be of benefit to your business. You don’t actually have to be able to put the words together yourself – you can always hire a PR / marketing firm like Rhetoric PR. However you do need to understand the underlying strategic elements of copywriting. That means you need to understand the difference between benefits and features, and ensure your content focuses on the benefits of your product or service. Your content should include classic sales techniques such as “calls to action” and your “unique selling proposition” ( “USP” ) etc, but do not use sales overkill in your copywriting. Content should look like editorial, not advertising or a sales manual.

No 3   Share your message and content

Social media marketing at it’s most effective is content marketing. Social media ie Twitter and a Facebook page is the most cost-effective way to carry content right to the prospects you’re looking for.

Social media is a very effective medium or vehicle for getting your entertaining, interesting and strategic content shared. Research how your prospects and customers share the type of content you’re creating … then make it easy and palatable for them to share it with their friends and followers.

If you are an SME ( Small / Medium Enterprise / Company ) and you require help with your content writing, copywritiing, content marketing or general PR & Marketing, we would be happy to assist you. For further information…….. www.rhetoric-artofpersuasion.com/marketing-for-small-businesses/

Before embarking on Content Marketing, you might like to read this Marketing Week article which outlines some of the pitfalls that need to be avoided……… www.marketingweek.co.uk/news/value-in-content-but-dont-jump-in/4002518.article