-- May 22, 2004

Public Relations Rules!!!

Public Relations (PR) is at the core of every successful business though even seasoned PR practitioners can't agree about what they do.

We don't need an academic discussion to understand how Public Relations (PR) supports business. Let's keep it simple. Public Relations helps your business build relationships with the public - everyone who is in any way connected with it.

We all know how complicated building relationships can be. Remember your first day in high school? Remember what it was like being "the new kid on the block"? You wanted to be accepted and find new friends, maybe even a date. You also had teachers, parents and siblings to get along with. Did you just outright announce "I'm the most spectacular creature on the face of the earth" and expect everyone to welcome you with open arms? Not likely. You spent a lot of time building trust and trying to fit in. Remember all the give and take? Finally you found someone you could talk with about common interests. Your new friend introduced you to others. They, in turn, told others that you were "cool". As your circle of friends grew, you discovered that certain expectations came along with the privilege of "belonging". If those expectations were compatible with who you perceived yourself to be...you continued to build those relationships. But if they were inconsistent, you moved on until you found a better fit.

That's pretty simplistic, I know. But business, is very much the same. You have something of value. You want people to buy it from you. What do you do? Do you go to your supportive friends and acquaintances and say "I'm in business, buy from me 'cause I'm the greatest"?

Rather, you start doing all the various tasks that are required to run your business, keep people up-to-date on your progress and, even, ask for advice. You get acquainted with people, ask about their concerns and interests and talk about possible solutions. You might advertise your business but you don't expect everyone to buy from you "just because".

Sales happen when a need and a solution meet in an atmosphere of credibility and trust. First sale is always the hardest. With each sale, you look for new ways to strengthen relationships, keep your customers coming back and find others who have similar needs so you can get them happily involved in your solution.

Public Relations is the discipline that helps your business identify all the countless tasks that maintain and build relationships, including:

  • introduce newsworthy information about yourself and your industry
  • serve as an un-biased, up-to-date expert reporters can turn to for
  • information
  • teach and inform through newsletters, speeches and public appearances
  • participate in community events
  • give away useful items imprinted with your logo to show you understand
  • and care
  • work with competitors
  • continue your work, allowing others to see that you're truly dedicated to their well-being.

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(C) Joan-Marie Moss March 2004
Joan-Marie Moss & Associates, Ltd.
http://www.creativeoptions.com
405 S. Home #201, Oak Park IL 60302

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Revised 04/04/2005