PR is supposed to attract and maintain clients. So even for a new planner it’s possible to use it effectively. New clients will either hear about you in the press or you can send your clippings to them, use them in marketing materials, etc. Existing clients will be happy that you are at the status that your opinion is being sought after.
One of the most powerful ways to connect with prospects, clients, colleagues, and economic buyers of the world is through storytelling. All our life we’ve been told stories: as children, in school, at camp, through books, movies, opera and even TV and radio commercials. As humans we’re hard-wired for stories. We’re conditioned to respond to them…and we do. You can use stories to effectively sell yourself and your services.
Many people have gone broke promoting seminars and events. It’s a gamble. But let me say this: A 1% response to direct mail is really good, probably more like 1/2% So if it cost you $300 for the room, and $200 in misc expenses, you could spend $1500 on mailings, which after printing and postage of about .50 each, gives you about 3,000 pieces. at one percent it’s 30 people, at .5% it’s 15. Not counting your time, you can see how the costs add up quickly.
Advertising costs money, while PR is free media attention. Writing for magazines is better as you can get paid for it and it will advertise you to a certain extent. You could call it PR, but I doubt anyone in the PR biz would call it that. PR would be a magazine doing a story about you. 😉 Basically, public relations is getting someone in the media to promote you in some way.
If you like to write, consider doing a column for a local paper. Many small papers will print your work and give you some advertising space in return. These are small papers, but with your market, it might just be the ticket to building a reputation.
Your most important consideration regarding media centers on what you can do for them and their readers or viewers. Their business needs ratings to be successful. If you can help them with that, they don’t mind you gaining an advantage from the relationship as well. But you need to be clearly focused on what you are delivering to their audience that will benefit them and make them better off. The media, generally speaking, couldn’t care less about you, unless you help them with their audience in some way. You need to get more people to watch their show. If you can do that, you can be a star! (well, at least you can get booked on some shows or quoted in the paper)
Email marketing, commonly referred to as SPAM, is surely NOT a way to get clients. It’s a way to ruin your good name and make people hate you. However, we have to consider email as a contact method that we can use. No doubt that some communication with existing clients will occur though email, but also we can use email to communicate and find perspective clients.The main way to find clients with email is through a email newsletter or email magazine or ezine for short. Perhaps you already get a few of these. I do. I get them from people that have something interesting and helpful to say on a regular basis. Yes, they are also trying to sell me something but I am willing to trade being open to a sales pitch for their content.