PR strategy
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By Anita Ginsburg

There are many considerations that go into starting a new business. This includes product design, market research, strategic planning and much more. However, one thing you shouldn’t forget is public relations. PR can have a bigger impact on your company than you might have imagined. Below are five reasons why your company needs a solid PR strategy.

PR Helps Shape Your Branding

When a company is new, first impressions matter. If the first thing a consumer hears about your company is from someone ranting negatively about your business on social media, it will certainly not be a good first impression. In fact, unless you have millions to spend on marketing, this kind of bad word of mouth may help shape how the public perceives your brand in general.

PR Experts Know What to Do During a Crisis

If you want to get a handle on your PR or recover from a PR crisis, consulting with PR experts is very important. Many companies make mistakes after wandering into a PR nightmare. Some of their decisions, while well intentioned, only add fuel to the fire. A PR expert, on the other hand, will know exactly what to do to handle the situation. Consider hiring someone with a public relations master’s degree.

You May Be Oblivious to the Harm Done

In certain cases, business owners are unaware their companies and brands have bad PR all together. Ignorance isn’t bliss in this case. Bad PR can certainly ravage your sales. Not making course corrections in your service, marketing, statements to the public, etc. in a timely fashion can lead to a point of no return.

It Can Open You Up to Lawsuits

Bad PR can fester into a seething hatred with certain elements of the public. This can make your company a larger target than it used to be. Many people may try to find excuses to sue you. Even if the claims are unjustified, it can still cost you a lot in legal fees and make your PR even worse.

Traces of Bad PR Don’t Disappear from the Net

Thanks to the internet, bad PR from the past can still have an effect on your company long after the controversy has subsided. This is due to how certain things tend to stay on the internet. Internet “click bait” news stories about the controversy and bad reviews may stay on the internet for years or even decades.

PR is not something you should ignore. You need a strategy to properly manage it from the beginning. That way, if you do have a PR crisis, you will be able to stem most of the damage early.

Anita Ginsburg is a freelance writer from Denver, CO and often writes about business, finance, education and home. She graduated from Colorado State University in 2004. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family when she isn’t writing.