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Public Relations can be a tricky business to master if it is not your area of expertise. A business first starting out may not have the funds to hire an in-house PR manager or the help of a PR agency to lead them on the path to press success during the humble beginnings.
However, PR is such an important part of a business when starting out that is imperative to have the basics down!
We give you our PR rules of thumb…
Know your story – Lay down your brand ethos and stick to it. Appreciate its value to your business. The most important thing to remember is your story should be unique and a constant. 
Think from the public’s perspective – A huge task you must undertake is to relate to your audience. When you are developing a PR campaign, always see things from the public’s perspective. You may know what you want to get across but it needs to be believable to be accepted.
Be ready to stand out – What makes you different and what makes your company more exciting than the competition? Don’t be boring! And don’t try to be like anyone else. Be better, or be better value!
Be honest – If you make a mistake admit to it, deal with it appropriately, apologise, give a solution and move on. The way you handle your affairs in the beginning will stay with you for a long time.
Create relationships before you pitch – A press release is all well and good, but first you should be connecting with journalists, get an intro (if you can!), or do some research, network, become a good contact yourself.
Do not pitch on a Monday – Your idea it will get lost in the Monday catch up madness.
Do not pitch on a Friday – Frankly no one will care. It’s too late in the week to be of interest or generate a buzz.
Be aware of timezones – If you want to reach an international audience with your releases you need to adjust accordingly.
Never attach your brand to another – Unless you are partnering or teaming up. Associating your brand to another company can be a very dangerous card to play. For example, say you choose an already successful brand to describe your brand in its field, e.g. we are the Coca Cola of cars, if for any reason the existing brand you chose comes into any difficulty in business in the future, your competitors or the press could re hash your comment to put you in a negative light.
Be wary of speaking of other companies – In a positive or negative way. Again, never allow the press to ask you to compare your company or question you about another business.
Anything you put out could come back to haunt you – Always review your comments first to ensure you want what you are saying to be remembered, you wouldn’t want your new business tarnished by something off-hand you said by accident in the beginning stages.
Do not answer questions you don’t want to – If you are not ready to answer a question or you think that it is off the subject of your brand then don’t answer. Try to bridge the subject by turning the conversation away and connecting to something relevant to your brand or current and future plans.
Always remember that once it’s been said it’s hard to take it back!
Finally, it is always advisable to research and use tools to guide you along the way. Look out for our upcoming post – Top sites to use as a start up when you are doing your own PR.
What do you think of our rules of thumb? And do you have any rules of your own you stand by?…
This blog post was written by Natalie Grout evvnt Communications Manager.

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