Monday, June 27, 2016

10 Strategies of a Great PR Campaign

1. Have a great story to tell. This is key. If you don’t have anything interesting for the media, why would they cover it? The skill in this is to identify the story idea and then work with people in the company to flush out the specifics and give it some personality to make it appetizing for the media.
2. Determine what tools you will need to communicate your story. Sure everyone needs a news release but what other tools will help sell your story? This could be a video, infographic, white paper or research that elevates your pitch and helps you stand out from the crowd. Visuals and graphics sell well with today’s audience.
3. Research your targeted media before sending anything out. It is wise to look at your targeted publications or TV stations and see if they run stories similar to those you are pitching. If your story idea is business oriented it will be difficult to sell it to a consumer related publication. Read and watch and see if you story idea makes sense for the media you are targeting.
4. Write well. You need to communicate your pitch in a news release or email. This needs to be done in simple, concise but interesting sentences. Busy journalists don’t have time to read elongated pitches and releases that don’t get to the point. Make sure you write in a style that sells your story or find someone who can.
5. Create a good email headline. Since most communication is done by email, you need to make your subject line interesting so it stands out from the crowd. Instead of “Man Finds Feast At Area Hamburger Restaurant” make it “Man Eats 12 Hamburgers in 5 Minutes Sets New Record-Has Great Story To Tell Why He Did It”
6. Create good talking points for the interviewee. Nothing is worse than having an unprepared interviewee whether it is a CEO or someone else in the organization. Determine what you wish to communicate in advance. Write them out and make sure the interviewee stays on point.
7. Rehearse and role play. Speaking to a reporter on the phone is one thing, doing a TV interview is another. It is good to rehearse in advance and do some role play with one person playing the interviewer. For TV, using a studio-like setting with a microphone and bright lights is always good training.
8. Dress appropriately. You are the “brand”. Dress how you want people to perceive your brand if you are going to be on TV or in a photograph for an article. A t-shirt and tattered jeans usually won’t cut it if you head a large company, or even a small one for that matter. You want viewers to have positive images of doing business with your firm.
9. Leverage your story or article and give it “legs”. One method for gaining additional media coverage from one story is to leverage it for another. For example when one of our clients was on the NBC Nightly News we contacted the local newspaper and told them about it. They had a local gossip type column and ran a story that our client was on network television.
10. Understand how to amplify your news on social media. You can reach thousands more by sending out your article or TV story on social media. You can link it to your corporate or personal sites. In many cases your followers and friends may like it and re-post it. This way you generate thousands of more views with just a little effort.

For more great PR ideas visit Solomon Turner PR

Monday, April 25, 2016

Lessons Learned From The UMSL Digital Marketing Conference

1.  Develop a social media strategy with an end game in mind.
What do you wish to accomplish, do you have the resources (budgetary and personnel) to dedicate to it, what length of time will it take before you see results, and how will you measure the success of the campaign?

2.  Match social messaging to prospects at different levels of the purchasing funnel.
If you can segment this out you can tailor your messages to those ranging from general awareness to those ready to consider to those ready to make a buying decision.

3.  Under Armour owns My Fitness Pal and related apps. They have 160 million emails at their disposal. (Time to buy the stock.)

4.  Personalize content and engage the community before you start infusing the brand into the message.

5.  According to LinkedIn, an average of 7 decision makers can be involved in the buying decision. 10 pieces of content are consumed by each decision maker before a purchase is made. That is 10 x 7 or 70 pieces of content. Messaging needs to be consistent and engaging.

6.  .1 to `1% is a good click through rate on LinkedIn.

7.  Keep content digestible.
LinkedIn has ingredients for a successful content strategy modeled after food. 1 is "Raisin Brand"-Everyday Content. 2 is "Spinach"-educational and good for you. 3 is "Roasts"- that which is time consuming to produced but high in quality. 4 is "Chocolate Cake"-fun and entertaining like games. 5 is "Tabasco Sauce"-bold statements, strong points of view.

8.  65% of content should be Raisin Brand and Spinach. 20% should be Roasts. 15% Cake and Tabasco.

9.  Connect personally and then build clients out to the Collective, or everyone.

10. Social should be bold, be mobile, be nerdy, be learned and be nimble.

11. Determine your average cost to acquire a customer.

12. Use paid search. Use Google Task Manager.

13. Small businesses should spend 50% of the budget on Search Engine Optimization.

For more information on public relations and marketing visit Solomon Turner PR

Thursday, January 28, 2016

5 Ways The Kansas City Chiefs Can Become St. Louis' Adopted NFL Team

Yes they are 250+ miles away. Yes they are in the AFC, against the grain of our local NFC heritage. And yes, St. Louis fans are so frustrated right now with the NFL they might never emotionally invest in another football team.

However as teams start to maneuver to gain some type of foothold in the local market, the Chiefs seem to be the most likely of candidates to grab some meat from the carnage left by the Rams’ departure.

Here are 5 marketing strategies the Chiefs can use to start building a fan base in the ‘Lou and eventually become “Missouri’s team”.

1. Play a game or games in St. Louis. Start with a pre-season contest at the Jones Dome. Perhaps schedule a contest with Indianapolis or Chicago. Those two are also geographically within a few hours drive of our town.
Then try to get one actual regular season game per year scheduled here. It might take some high level maneuvering and hand-wringing on the part of Chiefs’ ownership but they can work it out. After all the NFL schedules regular season games in the U.K. and last I checked St. Louis is a lot closer than London. Eventually the rotation will provide a Chiefs’ home matchup against the Los Angeles Rams. That would be most entertaining to stage that game in St. Louis, wouldn’t it?

2. Start a community awareness program. Host clinics at St. Louis area boys clubs or other facilities. This can be done during the offseason. The Chiefs already have a St. Louis connection in Mizzou’s Jeremy Maclin. Plus they boast Chase Daniel, perhaps the best quarterback ever to play in Columbia. It should not be too difficult to get a few of these going. In addition to providing encouragement, instruction, and a fun day for area youth, it would generate a lot of positive media coverage and good exposure.

3. Generate more games on local St. Louis television and radio. The Chiefs should work with the NFL and the networks to get more exposure in the ‘Lou. Many of their games are already televised locally. As a playoff team in 2015, the Chiefs are likely to show-up on prime time games such as Monday Night Football, Thursday Night Football and perhaps Sunday night. Most of the early/later afternoon Sunday contests will likely be televised. The team could also find a local radio station to carry all of their games.

4. Increase merchandise sales at area outlets. This could take a while and may not start to occur until the three prior strategies are put into action. But if the Chiefs start playing at the Dome on a regular basis you may start seeing a few more red and gold hats at area stores and a few more on the street.

5. Create special ticket packages for St. Louis fans. The Chiefs could create something of a “St. Louis Section” at Arrowhead. A creative travel agent could put together several packages with area hotels and restaurants as part of a football weekend. Perhaps charter a bus or two and provide transportation. Many locals already travel the 1 hour, 30 minutes plus it takes to get to Columbia to watch Mizzou. Why not drive another hour and 45 minutes and see an NFL game?

For more PR/marketing tips visit Solomon Turner PR

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

How To Sell More By Becoming A Better Wordsmith

Words sell. It’s as simple as that.

Whether it’s an ad, a brochure, a LinkedIn post or email, the art of wordsmithing can be used to not only help you connect with your customers and targeted prospects, but to generate more interest and more sales.

Often misunderstood, wordsmithing is not just about brochure writing and proof reading. It is the creation of marketing messages in any medium that can raise the temperature of a prospect and spur them into action.

Here are five ways to help you get better results from your writing whether it be in print or online.

1. Write For Your Clients Not At Them. Research your clients and find out why they selected your firm. What words and phrases do they use to describe your company?


“They were the only one with Novus 500 sprayer that can do 500 impressions per minute the others can only do 250.”

 “They did a lot of research about us and were able to cut our expenses by 25% no one else made the attempt.”

“We were impressed with their portfolio of work especially with companies similar to ours in size and revenue. They have an outstanding reputation as indicated by the awards they have won.”

Take these golden nuggets from your customers. Then go beyond keywords to demonstrate your value in clear, concise statements.

2. Know The Value of Your Product and State It. Does your product or service solve a particular problem? Are you communicating those details in your messaging?

Everyone has a list of product benefits. State them in a way a prospective customer will notice and find interesting.

3. Tell A Story. Good marketing begins with good storytelling. Can you drive home your message with an interesting example of how you helped a company or individual with a specific solution for their problem?


We help you save money.

Ben’s Widget Company had a high amount of overhead. They found they were spending 30 per cent more on widget making than the industry average.  Ben was looking for ways to produce his widgets more efficiently and invited in a number of companies to address the problem. Our firm XYZ Manufacturing has a widget maker that can produce widgets at twice the speed of Ben’s equipment and cut man-hours and reduce costs. He was instantly impressed and gave us the P.O. for the equipment. Shortly we were able to help him reduce his costs by not only 30% but 40% and give him a great return on investment.

4. Adjust for Different Audiences.

Some of your customers may skew older, others younger. These differing customers and prospects may require differing methods of communication.

Older customers may prefer print products. These give you the opportunity to use more words and expand your message with case studies and more detail.

Customers of a younger vintage may prefer social media and online communication. This requires shorter messages. Often a visual can help get your point across.

No matter the vehicle key words and phrases should remain basically the same. The goal is to maintain consistency as your messaging successfully differentiates your firm from your competition.

5. Test for Best Results.

The right words can sway elections, reposition an entire industry (see “gaming” vs. “gambling”), and put new life into a product or service.

However some phrases work better than others. It is best to try a few versions of your newly created messages and measure the difference.

A small change, such as adjusting one word in a sentence, can often lead to big results.

For more information on public relations visit Solomon Turner PR

Friday, December 18, 2015

5 Interview Lessons Learned from Donald Trump

Love him or hate him. Agree or disagree. One thing Donald Trump knows how to do is command an interview. Neither an endorsement nor a disparagement, here are simply five lessons learned from observing “The Donald” that you can apply for your next media interview.

  1. Have a strategy. Is your goal to create some branding awareness for your product or service, publicize a special event, or discuss some key topics in the news? Trump is expert at controlling the interview to make sure his points get across. Unless you are running for office, or starring in a blockbuster film, chances are your interview will be short, around three to five minutes. Be prepared to get the most value out of appearance.

  2. Be interesting. No one can ever say Trump is a dull interview. He uses his words and actions to get people to react and respond. Those selected for an interview usually having something to say on an important topic or issue. Therefore make it interesting for the audience. Follow Trump’s lead by interspersing your comments with stories and examples that the audience will appreciate. No one wants to hear a bunch of monotonous comments to a series of questions. Look for ways to add spice to your answers.

  3. Use voice inflection for emphasis. Trump has used his years of television expertise to optimize his responses and engage the audience. You can do the same by lowering your voice on some key points and raising it on others. Viewers tend to listen more carefully as your voice fluctuates from a loud to a softer tone.

  4. Take charge of the interview. The Donald has no problem steering the conversation his way. He even lets the interviewer speak from time to time. Unlike Trump those who only appear occasionally on TV or radio may be a little hesitant to channel the conversation to their benefit. Rise up and use your time to get your key points across, even if it means veering down a path that differs from the interviewer’s original question.

  5. Display humbleness and empathy. Some view Trump as a blowhard. However, depending on the tone of the interview, he displays humility by thanking the host for his or her time and efforts associated with the opportunity.  You can be energetic and engaging as well without being bombastic. Always thank the interviewer and display your appreciation. It will help gain a return interview at a future date.
For more information visit Solomon/Turner PR

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

5 Ways to Get More Pickup For Your News Release

1. Create An Engaging Headline.
Rather than a typical headline...
Widget Inc. To Open In St. Louis...try...
Widget Inc. To Employ 1,000 Add $2 million To Local Economy With New St. Louis Store.
Why? Reporters get dozens if not hundreds of email pitches per day. You have about 10 seconds of a reporter's time to scan your pitch and decide if it is worth a closer look. A captivating headline can help it stand out amidst the clutter. Which reporter would not be intrigued enough to cover a story like this that adds greatly to the local economy? Even if your release is about a small store with 20 employees think of the benefits it brings to the community and get them into the headline.

2. Target The Right Publications.
A press release that may be a good fit for a business journal or daily newspaper may not work with a local lifestyle publication, fashion heavy magazine or suburban newspaper. Spend some time researching different publications to see what they like to run and how your idea or pitch could fit in.

3. Target The Right Reporters.
Each daily newspaper or business journal has individual reporters responsible for specific areas of interest or "beats". One may cover retail while another could cover architecture and construction. Locate and target the reporter who covers your business sector before you blindly send out press releases to a news desk.

4. Follow-up With A Phone Call.
Since reporters get the deluge of emails described above, in most cases you should follow-up your mailing with a phone call. A phone call will verify they received your release and will enable you to start a conversation about the importance of your information to the publication's audience. It also ensures that your release will get through all the filters and firewalls many publications have put in place. Though some news people may frown on this tactic, in a number of cases, as a St. Louis Public Relations Agency, we have had to email a good story idea two or three times before a reporter actually receives it and starts writing about it.

5. Attach A Photo Or Video.
Now that nearly every publication, radio station, and TV station is a multimedia publisher it helps to enclose a photo and/or video along with your release. Even if the reporter does not use these materials they can add clarity to your story pitch and greatly improve the odds that your email will be seen, read, and acted upon.

For more information visit Solomon/Turner PR

Monday, August 10, 2015

10 Reasons Why Your Business Needs Multimedia for PR Success

1.   Today's decision makers, or soon to be decision makers, are Internet savvy.
2.   They play or played video games.
3.   They like to be entertained in the communications process.
4.   They have a video, photo and graphics mentality.
5.   They are extremely mobile, think iPhone and iPad not PC.
6.   They want information on demand.
7.   They think Netflix not network TV.
8.   They have a "Green" mentality,  no need for large brochures with pockets filled with pages of      information, i.e. "dead trees".
9.   They look to YouTube for insights and inspiration.
10. They desire a customer experience that is social, engaging and visual.

For more information visit Solomon Turner PR

photo courtesy of KROMKRATHOG at