How to do your own PR in the US
Want to crack the US market? Success begins with the right PR strategy. Fortunately, managing your own PR campaign in the US is now well within reach.
There are no borders in the business world. The e-commerce revolution has made shipping products to overseas customers routine, communication tools such as Skype and Google Hangouts give online consultants access to a global client base, and international distribution networks like Amazon connect authors with worldwide readers.
So it follows that if you’re serving an international customer base, you should also be thinking about a global PR strategy – and the US is a good place to start.
“Many Australian businesses and entrepreneurs are eager to crack the US market, but engaging a US-based PR agency has been prohibitively expensive,” says Jules Brooke, founder and director of Handle Your Own PR.
“The US has a much more complex media landscape than we’re used to in Australia. There are thousands of regional television networks, radio stations and publications that all serve very different audiences and just about every niche imaginable.”
Why ‘strategy’ is the magic word
Brooke says that simply sending a generic media release to such diverse media outlets will generate limited success, and most likely waste large amounts of your time.
“You need a clear PR strategy before you even think about sending out a media release,” she explains. “Start by defining the customer segments you want to target, then identify the media outlets with matching audiences.”
Fortunately, this is no longer as overwhelming as it sounds. Handle Your Own PR operates an online PR platform that can connect you with the right US media outlets for your PR strategy, help you write engaging media releases and distribute them to the relevant US journalists and producers.
“There are two aspects to this,” says Brooke. “Firstly, you don’t want to waste your time doing interviews with media outlets that don’t match up with your target customers. Secondly, once you’ve identified the media outlets you want to work with, it’s much easier to craft media releases with the angles that will resonate with busy journalists.”
Making your media releases relevant
Effective media releases are much more than a generic announcement of your latest product or service. Rather, successful media releases present a specific news angle that aims to add value to the stories your contact journalists are working on.
“You need to think of yourself not as a salesperson for your product or service, but rather as a thought leader with something interesting to say,” explains Brooke.
“You need to present yourself as an engaging interviewee who is not just about the hard sell.”
Your media releases should focus on communicating an industry perspective, interesting research or other expert commentary that is relevant to a US audience. Hard selling your product or service comes a distant second.
“These are things journalists can build stories around,” concludes Brooke. “They are not interested in spruiking your product or service for free. But they are interested in communicating your expertise and insights to their audiences – whether that’s in Australia, the US or anywhere else in the world.”
Get your PR journey started in the US and visit the US website handleyourownpr.com or the AU website is handleyourownpr.com.au.
The annual subscription is $AU397.
About Jules Brooke
For the last fifteen years, Jules Brooke has been teaching small business owners and entrepreneurs how to grow their sales and get the phone ringing by getting featured for free in the media.
She has owned and operated a number of small businesses herself and ran a PR agency specialising in small business clients, start-ups and entrepreneurs for well over a decade. She has worked in most disciplines in marketing, both in Australia and overseas, and loves to share her knowledge and experience with her customers.
HYOPR has helped over a thousand small business owners to make millions of dollars’ worth of media exposure by running their own PR campaigns. Using her online boot camps, coaching and PR tools, Jules’ students have been on TV, radio and been featured in magazines and newspapers nationally. Many have gone on to huge success in their business.