Over the past few weeks I have taken you through a step by step process of how to start doing your own PR. My goal is to give you a starting point and practical tips, making sure you avoid overwhelm (because overwhelm sucks!)
Week 2: How to uncover your story
Week 6: What Story & Where to Pitch?
Today we are going to talk about how to build relationships that make a positive difference to your business.
Building relationships is absolutely crucial to PR (after all – it is called Public Relations!) and is at the heart of business. Another massive part of PR is your reputation and in order to build your reputation – guess what? It’s all about the relationships you build with people. And what they think and say about you, based on what you’ve said and done (and how you made them feel). Relationships and reputation are inextricably linked!
One of the questions I have been asked lately is how do you build relationships that result in opportunities? Opportunities that allow you to be seen in front of the right audiences, such as speaking in Facebook groups.
My thoughts are that you have to be strategic about where you invest your time and effort. If you are wanting to grow your business seriously, you need to think about building relationships with those that can help you with that in a genuine way and take your business to the next level.
But how do you do that?
Here are my 6 top tips on how to build relationships!
Let’s start with the PERSONAL QUALITIES:
1.Be you & be genuine
I feel like this may be stating the obvious BUT the best way to build relationships is to be yourself. If you try to be someone that you are not, eventually that will shine through and make it more difficult for you in the long run.
If you think of it as helping people, rather than selling to people, then it becomes a very different exchange of energy. This goes for journalists, influencers and other people in business. If you are someone who can find selling (or pitching) challenging, think of it from the angle of “how can I help this person/group of people?” and it can make it easier for you.
Make sure that you are adding something to the conversation. Think about how you can add value to their day and to their business.
Then it’s time to be STRATEGIC:
4.Think about who you want to build your relationships with.
My number one favourite question you need to know the answer to before you get started with PR is all about who you are trying to reach.
Go back to the research you did from Step 1, where you took a deep dive into your ideal client. Review this alongside your current customers and clients and think about WHO and WHERE they are and where they hang out. Then take a step back and think about who else reaches them in a positive way, who are your peers and who could help you open those doors for you?
Ultimately you want to narrow it down to which relationships you need to build in order to get you in front of those people. Relationships that you can build on. Relationships that will take you places that you wouldn’t necessarily be able to go on your own. Relationships that will stand the test of time.
5.What can you offer in terms of help and value?
Back in Step 2 we looked at your story and expertise. In the context of relationship building, sharing your expertise and experience is key. Obviously if you have stories in common with others that can help their audience, then that is something you can certainly share!
In terms of getting speaking opportunities, think about the areas of expertise that you can talk about, so you can approach them with suggestions about what you can bring to their community.
In order to build these relationships it’s all about an exchange of ideas, support and being able to offer them expertise that is different to what they can offer their audience. Look for what you can educate them on, that they don’t have. Show yourself as the expert.
By knowing what you can offer, proactively getting in touch with them and offering them value that they can pass on to their audience you are promoting yourself and positioning yourself as the expert in that field.
6.What relationships do you already have?
A great way to do this is to brainstorm who is in your current network (you know I love Post-Its!) Getting the clarity on this can be eye opening and makes you realise how you could use the power of your network to build up your reputation and relationships! They will know who you are, what you do, what you stand for and your values and are perfect candidates. Think about how you can use them in a positive way to reach more people. How could that look? Who do they know that could help you?
Think of areas such as:
- Previous colleagues/bosses
- Networking – online in person
- Your business besties
- The 5 people you spend most of your time with
- Social media connections
- Facebook groups
- Speaking opportunities
- Existing clients
- Potential clients
- So many opportunities!
I hope you found my top tips for building relationships in order to grow your business helpful!
What are your favourite relationship-building tips? Do you have any to share?
You can catch the replay now: https://www.facebook.com/CheerleaderPR/videos/303875523971127/
HOT OFF THE PRESS I’m hosting a FREE 2-hour Media Bio Masterclass on Wednesday 19th August at 9.30am GMT.
We’ll be taking action in real time and you’ll come away from the session with a first draft of your media bio in your hand.
That way you can start pitching for profile-raising opportunities ASAP. To reserve your seat at the not-to-be-missed Media Bio Masterclass make sure you click here!