With all of the ramifications of COVID-19 and other stressors going on, your HVACR business is probably looking for new ways to generate sales as cost-effectively as possible. Well, there is something you can do right now to boost your bottom line in just a few days … public relations or “PR.”
Now, many of you may think that “PR” stands for “press release,” but public relations is so much more. It encompasses all of the ways you communicate with customers so that you get the right message out — the right way, at the right time. In fact, public relations offers many opportunities for your business that you may be unaware of.
Do You Take Advantage of These PR Benefits?
Public Relations can…
• Give you a competitive edge.
Let’s say that you have a feature story about your HVACR business published in the local newspaper. It focuses on your expert team, great service, and how you helped customers in the community.
Readers learn more about the people behind your business, what you stand for, and how you provide services. You become top-of-mind, and this single story can send a lot of new customers to your door without a thought about using the competition.
• Boost credibility.
The newspaper story above works because it provides third-party credibility. When a media venue (that many of your potential customers find to be a valuable resource) talks about your company, you receive credibility and a special kind of advertising you simply can’t buy.
Whether it’s a radio interview, television appearance, podcast discussion, magazine mention, or something else, the audiences for these media venues will see you as an expert in your field. They generally assume you have some type of special expertise or experience just because you are mentioned. This is unique, third-party credibility you can’t get through advertisement placements, where people know you paid for the coverage.
• Increase awareness.
A “simple” local story can also spread across the Internet and build positive word-of-mouth fast. Most media venues post their stories online, so you can generate a massive amount of publicity from a single media mention. After all, people may comment on your interview and share it with friends across the globe within seconds.
The other benefit of a media story like this is that it helps your business rank higher in search engines. Specifically, if potential customers search for your products and services online, this current news story will probably appear as one of the top results. This is because the media source has a strong following to obtain top rankings in a certain area, and it’s fresh, newsworthy information.
If your business appears first in a search ranking and your competitors are further down the page, guess who potential customers are going to contact first. It will likely be you.
Also note that this media mention will remain online forever, giving you an extra “awareness” push for the long haul.
• Save thousands of dollars in advertising.
The best part about getting these media clippings through public relations is that it doesn’t need to cost you anything but time and effort. All you need to do is decide what is newsworthy and valuable to targeted media members, contact them directly with your story ideas, and conduct the appropriate follow-up.
It takes some practice, but over time, you will establish valuable relationships with media members. Then, they will contact you as an industry expert for future stories.
With the right PR efforts, you can get a published story in front of your target market within days that’s worth thousands in advertising dollars — without spending a cent.
• Enhance your marketing message.
Once your story goes live, this is just the beginning. Now you can use this media clip in your marketing and sales activities, including newsletters, emails, brochures, social media, website pages, and live presentations.
Potential customers like to see that others are talking about you in a positive light, especially if popular media venues in your industry quote you, so be sure to share your news as much as possible. Remember, a published story from your PR efforts is more than just a single business mention. It’s a valuable tool you can use repeatedly to make good impressions, bring new customers in the door, and close deals.
• Hire fantastic team members.
One of the valuable benefits of public relations many people don’t realize is that it can help you win top talent over the competition. Basically, if potential new hires see your interviews in the media on a regular basis, they learn about your company culture, expertise, mission, benefits, etc. You become this current, newsworthy, successful business that they want to be part of now and in the future.
If you want to have a competitive edge without spending a cent, start using public relations to your advantage. With a single pitch to a targeted media member, you can obtain a newsworthy mention that helps boost sales, awareness, and credibility within days.
What would this do for your HVACR business right now?