PT Barnum was the ultimate showman. A wildly successful promoter, he was able to draw crowds to his attractions and became known for “The Greatest Show on Earth,” which we know today as the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. His ability to transform commercial entertainment through the art of publicity is an example we can still learn from today.
This quote from Barnum, a famous one in the PR industry, still rings true:
“Without promotion, something terrible happens…nothing!”
Sure, you can cross your fingers that a reporter will call you proactively—but the odds of that happening are probably pretty slim.
You can assume those ads you spent so much of your marketing budget on will convince a potential buyer to check you out—but will they believe what you say about yourself?
You can hope that those coffee mugs you paid a pretty penny for worked to get your name out at that trade show you were part of—but the truth is, are they really effective?
Without PR, you could be suffering from a lack of visibility. Does anyone that matters know about your business? Do potential customers really understand what it is you do? And when they compare the options, will you stand out from your competitors?
PR helps address these issues for your business by making you noticeable and educating potential buyers about your offering. Standing out from the crowd is getting increasingly difficult. This is why PR is almost like a secret weapon for some businesses, who are leveraging it to help differentiate themselves from the pack.
A well-timed article in a reputable publication can have impact beyond the day it’s published. It can live on, helping your business when a potential customer searches for what it is you’re selling. And the credibility of a news story is higher than that of an ad.
A study by Nielsen found:
“PR is almost 90 percent more effective than advertising in the consumer decision-making process.”
And, public relations dovetails nicely into social media and content marketing, not to mention SEO. It should be a part of any SMB’s marketing plan.
So, do you want your business to live in obscurity? Or do you want to get it out there for the world to see? PR can help you achieve visibility and drive more prospects and sales to your business. If it worked for PT Barnum, the king of promotions, couldn’t it work for you?
Michelle Garrett is a PR consultant and writer at Garrett Public Relations. Her articles have been published on Entrepreneur, and she frequently contributes to Muck Rack and PR Daily. Follow her on Twitter @PRisUs or connect with her on LinkedIn.