5 Tips to Improve your B2B PR Campaigns

It is no secret that the communications and marketing world has changed forever. Brands, even those in B2B markets, are speaking to new generations and to new groups of people that understand business in different ways than previous generations.

Having said that, it’s important, now more than ever, that brands learn to adopt  new approaches (and languages) when pitching press releases or news alerts to the market, regardless if the desired channel to distribute such content is a media editor or a company’s social media site.

I’ve been dealing with different kinds of media for the past 12 years; as a reporter, editor and PR and Digital Marketing consultant so I created a small list of things that companies can do to get better results when pitching press releases or news alerts to the market.

Be humble and avoid excessive conditional adjectives for your brand and products: maybe in the past it was good to brag about your company and your products, calling your brand the leader in the industry but that is not relevant anymore. That part of the PR gets deleted if an editor chooses to publish your story or PR. Also, avoid the excessive use of adjectives when talking about your product and this includes terms such as “powerful”, “great”, “superior”. Those are things that make editors to say “meh”. It’s hyperbole and people see through it.

Dare to try something different: in the B2B world, we tend to be solemn, serious, formal and I can go on… However, one of the ideas that have started to make a career in B2B marketing is that even when you are communicating with corporations (opposed to the B2C world where companies sell to the final consumer), the decision maker is still a person, somebody you need to engage to win his/her attention. Editors need to be engaged too. But to engage people, specially millennials, you need more than the traditional corporate message. Have you consider adding some humor to your communication? For many marketing experts, talking funny is the next big thing in B2B marketing.

Think as a problem-solver: in B2B marketing we have the tendency to talk about technical features, leaving behind the problem that we are trying to solve. Something brands could do is enumerating the multiple problems and the markets or segments that would benefit with X or Y product, instead of enumerating the technical characteristics and “superior” performance. Don’t forget that problem-solving is the language of business in today’s B2B environment. Journalists love problem-solving so if you are telling her in advance how her readers would benefit with the product you are launching, you have better opportunity to be published.

Develop your editor personas: this is not a typo. I would suggest that as your sales efforts are strategically oriented toward specific customer segments, your PR efforts should be oriented toward specific editors. Sending your industrial press releases to all the journalists in a database is like sending the same email marketing campaign to all your prospects regardless of the stage of the Customer’s Decision Journey they are at. How can you be strategic in PR pitching? You have to read what editors are writing about, identify those influencers (yes, editors are influencers) that are talking about what you manufacture and focus in developing close and valuable relationships. Of course, you can have an agency or your PR team doing this for your brand. One last thing… It takes time.

Make sure that your PR agency or PR team adopt this mindset: in marketing, all the projects and initiatives require buy-in both from above and below your job title. If the people working for you or your consultants don’t adopt this approach then nothing will change and you will have a hard time trying to implement this strategic PR approach for your news distribution programs.

This is all by now. I hope you have enjoyed and found this list helpful. Maybe you have some things to think about. Are we still very presumptuous in the way we speak about our business? Are we using plain tactics and a boring message? Are we working enough with our sales team to identify the problems that our technology can solve? I believe that solving these issues shouldn’t be very hard for you.

Julian Arcila

Marketing | Communications Consultant
Signalis Group