VOL. 133 | NO. 119 | Thursday, June 14, 2018
Keeping B2B Communication Fresh
When handling public relations efforts for a business-to-business client, you have to get a little more creative than usual and think outside the box.
The tools in your traditional PR toolkit simply won’t fare well for this client. There aren’t as many events to plan, no preopening menu items to taste, no grandiose storefront to show off. So, how do you do it? How do you get your B2B client in the news? Top-of-mind for their target market? Buckle up and put on your thinking caps.
Share a story. Sounds like an obvious option, right? Most B2B companies fail to do this, though. Think of a B2B company near where you live or work. Do you know how they started? Do you know how their product makes a difference? Probably not, which opens the door for you, the PR guru, to help them do it. Personalizing the brand and its services is a crucial component to making a B2B company approachable. Use social media and digital marketing materials like e-newsletters to highlight the organization’s history and share how the service it offers makes a difference in people’s lives.
Leverage leadership. Another way to personalize a B2B company is to showcase its leadership. Position the person at the helm as the expert in not only the field the company specializes in but in leadership as well. There are countless ways to do this. The obvious is to have your leader conduct lunch-and-learns or speak at a trade organization’s meeting, but two less-traveled angles I’ve found work well are video and written materials like blog posts or social media posts. Is there an area of professionalism the head honcho is passionate about? Great! Leverage that. Take servant leadership for example. I work with a professional janitorial company that publishes a biweekly video series on servant leadership. At first glance, no one would associate a janitorial company with servant leadership, which is what makes the campaign such a hit and so memorable!
Create case studies. Reach out to your best and brightest clients to gather information for a case study. People generally have no problem talking about the service they’ve received when it’s stellar. So, getting them to chat about how you’ve made their lives easier and helped to improve their business by providing a service should be a piece of cake. It’s a win-win for both parties! You get to showcase the good work your team has done, while your client gets great exposure as well. When you make the ask, let them know how you plan to use the case study once completed. Include the client’s logo and photos of your team servicing the client’s space if possible, creating added exposure and benefits.
Incorporate one (or all three!) of these strategies into your B2B PR plan and I’m confident that yawning will not be on the agenda for your audience when they think about the business.
Murray Lace is an account executive with Obsidian Public Relations.