A B2B PR strategy is a critical piece of a holistic marketing program. When planned and executed effectively, PR can be a powerful lead generation, credibility and awareness tool for B2B organizations.
B2B buyers are information-savvy and research-oriented when evaluating and making purchasing decisions for their companies. That means B2B organizations have to reach prospects on a variety of channels that influence purchasing decisions, including business and trade publications, social media and review websites, and other third-party sources like blogs or B2B product forums. This requires a strategic, multi-pronged approach to public relations.
Fundamentals of a B2B PR Strategy
Companies need to build a strong foundation for PR success. Blindly pitching reporters and commenting on breaking news stories without a solid plan and strategy is risky and limits results. Instead, focus on establishing these essential components of a B2B PR strategy:
- Buyer Personas: B2B purchasing decisions are much more involved than most consumer purchases. They often require larger budgets and sophisticated technology or services. Buyer personas allow organizations to better understand their target audiences and develop a PR program that appeals to their needs, pain points and interests.
- Messaging: Tailor your messaging and highlight the most compelling product or service benefits and unique differentiators for each target audience. Consider your buyer personas and the specific challenges faced by each audience to create content and PR campaigns that have a maximum impact.
- Competitive Analysis: Take the time to understand the strengths and weaknesses of your competition. Analyze their media coverage, target audiences and marketing initiatives to better inform your B2B PR strategy.
- Thought Leaders and Subject Matter Experts: Your people are one of your most valuable PR assets. Sales, account and product teams are well versed in market trends, client pain points and corporate differentiators. These experts can provide fodder for media pitches, interviews and corporate website content like blog posts.
- Data and Statistics: A steady stream of newsworthy corporate announcements is great, but most B2B companies have to make their own news to generate coverage on a consistent basis. A great way to do this is through data and statistics. Data and statistics from reputable sources such as Forrester or comScore add credibility to media pitches and news stories. Go even further by leveraging internal data sources or a data study provider to conduct original research reports that generate media coverage and website leads.
As you build this foundation, establish key metrics to reveal campaign performance related to overarching PR goals. Key metrics must be clear and measurable, such as website traffic from PR, conversion rates on PR landing pages, or social media conversations and perceptions. Constantly monitor and track your progress against your goals to find out what works and any improvement areas.
For many B2B companies, outsourcing your PR program’s development and execution is the most time- and cost-effective approach. If you are ready to discuss your B2B PR strategy and learn more about our results, call us today at (312) 235-6173.