So you believe in the power of marketing and PR to drive sales and you invest sufficient time and resources into business operations to ensure the utmost quality. But as the founder and CEO, why is your face and voice outwardly so important to the success of the business? After all, your products and services speak for themselves, right?
When consumers buy from a brand built around a positive reputation, they’re investing in that same feeling and positive emotion. If the products and services you provide already speak for themselves, together this creates a cycle of trust which ignites loyalty…and then you’re onto a winner.
When it comes to the PR strategy, nothing helps to power positive reputation quite like founder-focused leadership and CEO profiling. To motivate repeat business, it’s important for consumers to not just buy into the product or service, but also the values and ethos of the company – or the ‘brand’. And who better to communicate this message than you, the founder?
So how do you go about implementing a corporate profiling PR strategy?
- First, think about the story behind your brand, as this will be unique to you and your business. As an entrepreneur and founder, the chances are that you set the business up to solve a particular problem that you were facing. People buy from people; speaking about your own experiences (whether it relates to a business or consumer problem) will make you relatable and will make it easier for your audience to engage with you and the brand.
- Next, think about who else could be affected by the same problem that you experienced before you set the business up. This is your target audience. What publications do they read? What television programmes do they watch and where do they spend their time online? Knowing your target audience will allow that positive word of mouth to travel fast in the right places.
- Is there a secondary audience you’d like to target? For example, are you looking for investment or partnerships? The messages you communicate here would be slightly different, but will all stem from your brand story.
- For a brand’s influence to be ubiquitous, as with all communication, it needs to be rooted within your corporate messaging. The starting point is ensuring that what you say is consistent whether it’s on your website, social media channels or your PR strategy. The PR strategy should always link back to the website and your social media channels, so ensure that the ‘about us’ pages on your website are up-to-date and that you have social media profiles for yourself as well as your brand. These will be used to amplify any profile building activities.
- Working with PR experts will allow your brand message to travel much further. There are many different ways to tell your story depending on your target media. PR experts will work with you to develop press materials including your profile pitch, a press release detailing any financial figures (if targeting investors or partners, for example), black book documents for broadcast media and professional photography which ties into your brand. They will work with you to organise media interviews and to offer tips on speaking to the media as well as helping to control your brand message.
Today’s media landscape is very much personality-led, with little room for bland press releases and social media updates. Think about some of the CEOs you admire most and look at how they conduct themselves in the media. Then take a look at your own industry competitors. If you have a controversial opinion, don’t be afraid to voice it and encourage debate. Use your brand message to stand up for what you believe in and you’re much more likely to generate a captive audience and command the respect that goes with it.