Stay business minded while riding the wave of positive PR
The article above which appeared in yesterday’s New York Times is a worthwhile read. As the CEO of a PR agency, I often field questions about how PR positively impacts a brand and the aforementioned article illustrates how First Lady Obama’s super star power brings buzz and affects the businesses of the designers she chooses.
Key Points to Take Away….
By reinforcing the quality attributes of a brand, PR can often result in increased awareness amongst core consumers. As the article states, the young designer, who was lucky enough to dress Michelle Obama on Saturday night commented: “By the next day, traffic on his Web site had shot up. By Monday, he was hearing from stores that do not carry his lines but were now, suddenly, very interested.” Now, its on him to close.
That being said, it is important to stay business minded as the increased attention and sales flood in. As the article states, “you can definitely win the PR race, but there’s still a business to manage.” Certainly, good PR doesn’t mean you can ignore business fundamentals. It is the important to realize that PR is a means to an end, but it is the responsibility of the company’s leadership to take the attention and turn it into a profitable, and sustainable boost to the bottom line.
Different segments are impacted differently by different types of PR. As one designer noted “…clients who have the taste and the money for high-end designer clothes are looking for something they feel is special — not, say, a dress that everyone has seen on magazine covers and on TV. As a designer of a $3,000 dress noted, “I can promise you I have not sold one Alaia dress because Michelle Obama wore it.”
Via sustained positive buzz and increased visibility, PR remains one of the cheapest ways for a company to build their brand. Food for thought.