PR Strategies

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A strong public relations program can help your firm in many ways. It helps extend your advertising efforts, it lends credibility, and it helps brand your firm's image in the marketplace. PR also can inspire your employees and reassure clients they are working with a world-class firm.

Here are a few strategies to boost your PR program.

Press Releases

Set a goal of writing one press release a month. You can write about product changes and improvements; new employees, service awards, board of director nominations; and more. Some papers will automatically print all the names of your new employees. Do your homework and make a few inquiry calls. When you write your press release, be sure to think about the reporter's job – help them write a story with an “angle.”

Meet The Press

Getting in front of the media is often as difficult as calling and scheduling a lunch. As an accountant, you are a gateway to a lot of clients that may be doing some really neat things the press might like to pick up. Think beyond your own press coverage and you'll find that more reporters will be coming to you to get “ideas.” Providing a list of key “experts” by subject (litigation support, tax, etc.) also will help your reporters find an instant source.

Press Kits

Today, as the news moves at warp speed, it might be a good idea to ask your local editors how they want to receive information. For example, one prominent editor at The Dallas Morning News says that he prefers email without attachments. He also says that “snail mail” – delivered by the friendly postman – is unlikely to be read. His reasoning? If it takes two days to get it to him, chances are it isn't that “hot.” For television, try to paint a picture in your editor's head. If you have a video clip of a previous event, send a clip so the station can get a “taste” of your story. Remember that the point of a press kit is to get a chance to pitch your story – you don't have to give them 20 pages of slick, glossy paper that chronicles your firm's accomplishments. Oh, and even if you are sending it across town, it could be worth the $13 bucks to FedEx it.

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