Public Relations and the dark funnel – editorial is the link you’re missing
Editorial helps people develop a relationship with your company through a process of discovery
Some advertising slogans are so well-known that they’ve become common parlance.
From KFC’s It’s Finger Lickin’ Good to Nike’s Just Do It or Rice Krispie’s Snap, Crackle and Pop.
There’ll no doubt be an advertising slogan that’s memorable to you and yours.
But despite the obvious way advertising infiltrates all our lives, no one likes to admit they have been influenced into a purchase through advertising. People want to have done their own research. Because then when the outcome is a positive one, we feel we have had a part in its success.
And in business, there’s often the requirement that three quotes or proposals have been sought before a decision on a contract is made, to help ensure best business value.
But whatever the case, people don’t like to feel they are being sold to.
It’s why in our household, direct mail goes straight in the recycling. Unless that is, it’s something from a company I already have a vested interest in. I’m thinking of the travel company we went away with on our honeymoon (almost eight years ago now – where has that time gone!). Then, I quite enjoy receiving their mail because it brings back memories and reminds me why we need a holiday. But I’d probably send any other travel company’s mail the same way as all the others.
PR helps build relationships with your target buyers without them feeling like they have been sold to
Whether it’s direct marketing, advertising, or sponsorship, unless people are warm contacts who already have a connection that makes them want to read more, it’s notoriously difficult not to make it feel like a hard sell.
And this is where PR comes in.
By securing editorial coverage it helps bridge the gap between someone feeling sold to and there being a warm contact who is open to making a purchase. With editorial, the media publication is independent of the companies or events they are writing about. Or in the case of thought leadership articles, the publication may have commissioned a piece of work by an organisation’s expert, but the publication is still independent from that person. And this builds credibility and authenticity.
Editorial helps people discover your company for themselves
When people read something in a publication, whether online or in written form, hear an interview on the radio or on television, they are in a mode of discovery.
People read the news in order to find out what is going on in the world.
People read in-depth features to gain a greater understanding about a topic.
And people read sector-specific publications to understand about the latest developments in their field of work. Whether that be in technology, fintech, engineering, sustainability or computing for example.
They may then use that knowledge and discuss it with others at their work, at the pub, or when talking to their family over dinner. They may share their thoughts or share a link to the article on social media whether privately or publicly. And so that one piece of media coverage about your technology company has a wider impact even than the publication’s circulation figures might suggest.
People become more open to what your business provides or may even recommend your technology business to others. So that it becomes a personal recommendation.
In some ways, this is why PR is notoriously difficult to measure.
Who are these people who have recommended your company? Where did someone first hear about you? The answer may well be that it was through a friend or family member who told them about a new piece of innovative technology. But where did that friend or family member first hear about you?
Well, it’s often called the dark funnel in marketing – the places where buyers are engaging with a brand and making buying decisions that can’t be tracked.
But editorial and PR likely had a big part to play in helping them make that decision.
To discover how an integrated approach to PR and marketing could transform your business, download our Integrated PR & Marketing guide today.
Serious about investing in B2B PR for your tech scale-up? Drop us a line today.