Recently a client asked me how he could better merchandise all of the great press we were getting his business. He had noticed that whenever his product was featured in the media, his social networks would blow up for a few days, and then the dust would settle leaving him wondering, “What do I do next?”
The first thing to do before planning the best way to merchandise your brand’s media coverage is to determine, “What do I want to accomplish with my press coverage?” As my friend and PR colleague Linda once said, “buzz” will always come and go – it isn’t sustainable, or it wouldn’t be called “buzz!” But, the lasting value in press coverage really comes from the third-party endorsement you get, how you capture and share the moment to build your brand
Buzz is fleeting, but building on that, the awareness and reputation last. The goal is not ultimately buzz, but it’s the opportunity the buzz opens. If a brand scores 2-3 great big hits per quarter (“big” will depend what your goals are of course) then it’s easy to determine ways to merchandise it that aligns with the marketing goals you have set.
Tout on social media.
You may already be using social media, but did you know that the shelf life of a tweet is about 12 minutes? All of your social media followers aren’t reading every post you do. Recycle your publicity as much as possible by blogging and posting hits to social media, reposting them, pulling out quotes from the press and thinking of creative ways that to feature press hits on social networks. Look beyond Facebook and Twitter, too: share everything on Google+ as well as a company page on LinkedIn.
Merchandise press hits for sales.
For print hits, make copies of them and for digital hits, create beautiful mock-ups that your sales team can use to showcase to retailers that a) carrying your brand will generate buzz for them and b) that your product is worthy enough to be endorsed by established media.
Create “as seen in” badges.
To keep your press coverage on your customers’ radar, create a small badge that touts each (of the best) media outlets you’ve been featured in. You can have these on homepage slider, in your footer, or in a side bar so that people who don’t go to your press page will still see the hits. You could also put the badges directly on the specific product featured so that if a customer sees it, they will know where to look.
Showcase press in your company newsletter.
Include links to press or press clippings in your e-newsletters. Repurpose the “as seen in” column that you create on your website and make it a recurring series in your email communications. You could also add callouts like if a reporter says, “This was the BEST product I’ve ever seen!” it will draw attention to the positive coverage and make more people want to see for themselves!
Thoughts on new and traditional media, current events, life in Chicago and the occasional small Chihuahua photo.