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How to effectively use PR for your product business – with Jessica Morgan
Episode 4812th February 2021 • Bring Your Product Ideas to Life • Vicki Weinberg
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It’s no secret that in order to effectively grow your products business you need to promote your products and get them in front of people. That’s why it’s useful to learn about the world of PR and how it can give your business the boost it needs. 

In this episode I speak to Jessica Morgan, founder of Carnsight Communications, a PR and communications agency for small and creative businesses and people. Jessica shares why and how to use PR to help people find (and buy!) your products. 

Listen in to hear Jess share:

  • An introduction to herself and what she does (1:45)
  • What PR is - in super simple terms (2:20)
  • The benefits of PR and why it’s worth spending (even a little) time and money (3:12)
  • Why you don’t need a big budget to see results (08:25)
  • What a PR agency can do for you (10:16)
  • How much time and effort you need to put into your PR (13:22)
  • The stage at which you need to start talking about your new product. Hint - it’s earlier think you think! (16:46)
  • Reasons people can be nervous about publicising their business or product and her reassuring response (18:06)
  • Why storytelling is so important - and why the most compelling story might not be what you think it is! (25:04)
  • Is all PR good PR? (27:11)
  • The basics you need to have in place before thinking about starting your PR (29:44)
  • How to get started (33:47)
  • Her number one piece of PR advice! (37:15)

USEFUL RESOURCES:

Read the blog post for this episode.

Carnsight Comms website

Carnsight Comms on Twitter

Jess Morgan on Twitter

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Carnsight Comms on Instagram

Jess Morgan on LinkedIn

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Transcripts

How to effectively use PR for your product business – with Jessica Morgan

Vicki Weinberg (:

For causing now I'm just going to give it a minute and then I'm going to talk, Right?

Jessica Morgan (:

Okay.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Hi. So today we're speaking to Jessica Morgan from Carnsight communications. Jessica helps people promote their products or services to get them noticed by the right people at the right time. She helps with anything from launches to raising profiles at any stage during a business's journey. So welcome Jessica. Thank you for being here.

Jessica (:

Hello. Nice to, nice to be here. Thank you.

Vicki Weinberg (:

So I know I've given you a really brief introduction then, but could you also say hi and tell us a bit more about yourself and what you do please?

Jessica (:

Sure. So I'm Jessica Morgan. I am the owner and founder of Carnsight Communications. We're just coming up to five years old. Actually we are a PR and communications agency for small and creative businesses and people, and there are three of us in the team permanently. And then we will say work with trusted freelancers when we're doing bigger projects.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Amazing. Thank you. So we're here to talk about PR today, Jess. So can we start by you explaining what PR is in the simplest simplest terms? That seems like a good start. Yeah, Yeah, of course. Yeah. So PR stands for public relations, which I know sounds really grand and very formal, but it doesn't have to be, I guess we usually describe it as creating ways to get people's brilliant work and expertise out in the public domain or better known really by their target audience. So we help get people noticed depending on whether they want to be noticed by a certain, a certain type of person or niche audience, or much more broadly.

Vicki Weinberg (:

So really it's about getting some brilliant work or brilliant products out there in the public domain and hoping to help increase sales as well. Thank you. And so what are the benefits of PR? So why, you know, why should, why should we care? Why should we even think about it?

Jessica (:

Sure. Okay. So I think there's a lot of misconceptions about PR and we often have a kind of conversation

about it at the start and we often work with people who've never done PR before as well. So we very much, we're very open about, about what PR can bring. I think it can pack a really big punch for a small business or a new product or business because it's not like marketing. I I'm, I used to work in marketing and I'm a big fan of PR and marketing working together. But I guess with PR you're, you're paying for someone's time and expertise. You're not really paying for ad placements or anything like that. And even the nationals journalists can really like small new products.

Jessica (:

I think you're not really discriminated against if you're small or you're new. If you're making something that's useful or looks amazing, then it can easily be picked up by the national press equally, locally as well. So if you're a maker in that local place, they can switch. I know you're based in the, the local cab press would be interested inyou just because you're a Kent maker or you've produced a product based in Kent. So I think it's a great way to, to kind of, as I say, pack quite a big punch for, for quite a small budget, we also find it's a really good way to honedown the messaging as well. If what you're trying to say.

Jessica (:

So often people come to us and talk about their products and they're ready to launch. And we say, you know, Oh, we'll describe what your product is in a nutshell. And actually sometimes it's quite difficult to do that, but that's exactly what we need to do when we pitch in. So we can really help with the messaging around something, working out what your unique selling points are versus competitors and, and really helping to kind of hone your elevator pitch, I guess, which is just essential when we're selling into press, we really need to be able to capture someone's attention within the first kind of 10, 15 seconds. So we find that hopefully we can help with overall messaging of a product as well. And I guess that was helped with your marketing there as well.

Jessica (:

We're done it if yeah. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. So we've just been helping to launch a new health product actually, which is really interesting. And I think people often come to PR at the end of the journey and they think, right, everything's ready to go. That's brilliant. We've done our ass. Let's just get it out there. And actually interestingly, we had to say to them, okay, so what can we say? What can we say in our press release? And there were lots of claims that they, they weren't sure if they could say so we went back, we went back a couple of stages and we did what we called a messaging session, which is basically getting everything out there. So everything about your product and your audience and all about you, your journey, the founders, et cetera, and everything out there.

Jessica (:

So will your competitors, publications, everything surrounding your product, basically that's not, not your actual product and your journey and then good things and bad things as well. Cause that's another thing you find with PR. Sometimes people are quite nervous about raising their profile and they're quite nervous about

the attention and the certain things they do or don't want to do. So we got all that out on the table. And, and the feedback from that is obviously it's useful for us because we find hooks or angles that we can use for press. We can write, press releases from it, but they also say it's useful for them as well because they can use it to shape their content, to shape their website content, social media.

Jessica (:

So I think, I think PR is one of those kind of disciplines where messaging messages around the product is just absolutely key. So for example, with marketing, you might want to hook her on a marketing line, which is amazing for that particular campaign, but with PR I guess you need a message that really represents everything you stand for. So it's not just about campaigns, it's about the essence of the product or the service. So yeah, we definitely get feedback that actually, it's a kind of key part of communication as a whole.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Thank you. And so what are some of the benefits of investing in some time or money or both probably into your peer?

Jessica (:

So I think messaging, like I was saying is, is one of them because we really interrogate the messaging and work out exactly what it stands for. I think certainly, like I said, it can, it can really help with new products because being, being a kind of product launch or service launch is a really strong angle in itself. So we always say to people, you can only launch launch once, so you really want to do it well and do it properly. And that's, you know, something that the press will want to talk about. I think in terms of being a bit more affordable, you're actually, like I mentioned before, you're paying for someone's time and not really paying for a big ad placement or, or anything like that.

Jessica (:

You're really paying for an expert's time. So it's, it can be quite a kind of contained way to invest the money upfront. So I'd say those are the key benefits.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Thank you. And so talking about, so as you're paying for time, do you need a really big budget to do well in PR?

Jessica (:

I wouldn't say so, but you know, equally, I guess there is a, there is definitely an element of getting what you, what you pay for as well. Having said that we have worked with some really small budgets and we've really been able to say I have a big impact with them because we can be really targeted. I guess we're experts in working with small businesses. So we totally understand there isn't a limitless budget. It's, it's very, it's very much a choice of, of really being careful what you spend your money on and what you invest in and what

you do yourself. I'd say PR is something that you would really benefit from getting some expert help on, but you don't necessarily have to have someone to do it all for you.

Jessica (:

So for example, we worked with the doodoos Monique Corrigan, who I think you've spoken to

Vicki Weinberg (:

Another podcast. Yeah, yeah.

Jessica (:

With her lovely, lovely products. And she had a grant to enable her to do some PR. So it was very focused, very ring-fenced. We only had a certain amount of money. So we were really, really targeted. And we just went after Christmas gift lists for her. And we, we were very clear about how many samples we had to send out and exactly who we were contacting. And we had some real success there because we had a really, really targeted approach. So we were, we were really clear about going into places like the guardian, no, sorry, the independent or the guardian baby magazine city kids.

Jessica (:

It actually didn't take loads of our time. I think she paid for a couple of a couple of days of our time, but we were able to get these really big placements. I think if you've got a slightly bigger budget, you're probably able to look a bit more broadly and be a bit more proactive, but it's definitely something you can do on, on quite a contingent budget as well.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Thank you. And so let's so talking about what you did with Monique as an example, just so people are really clear about what you can do for them. So is your role to look for the opportunities and then kind of contact their publications and make it happen as it were. Is that, is that your role in the process?

Jessica (:

Yeah, exactly. So often people come to us and we say, what do you want from PR? I guess that's the first place to start. I think people often kind of come and say, we need to do some PR. So we kind of go back to basics and say, okay, so why do you want to do it? What, what are you trying to do? Is it about sales? Is it because you suddenly see, know your competitors doing PR and you don't want to miss out, is it about promoting a new offering? So we really get back to basics and work out exactly what they want. And then we talk about target audience. So who do you want to get your products or offering in front of? And sometimes they're, they're very clear and they know, or sometimes it's a bit more broad and we try and hone it down and, and try and say, well, is it a geographical area?

Jessica (:

Is it just women over a certain age? So just, just really kind of be very, very clear about that. And then sometimes they'll have target publications and they'll say, I've always wanted to be in this publication, is that possible? And we'll discuss it. And sometimes they want to be guided by us. So we would create a media list and say, okay, we think these publications would be interested. We think these journalists, we think there's a really nice opportunity for you to be in this column. So it's quite kind of discursive all the way through. And then generally speaking, we, we agree the approach and we agree what the message is. So sometimes it's about a press release to get news out there. And sometimes it's more about opinions and interviews.

Jessica (:

So trying to get someone's name out there and to be interviewed about a topic of choice, for example. So we generally agree that approach. And then we contact the journalists, the publications, we find them, right? People, we set them up with the right people. We obviously have to do a lot of ups nowadays as well. Definitely the media landscape's changed this year and journalists are working from home. So it's a case of, of getting them in the right time and then go on to secure the publications for them. And then once we get the media coverage, we share it with them. We share it online, which is a really important part of it. So socials on websites and we put it all together as well in a coverage book and it pulls in all the metrics.

Jessica (:

So if it's online coverage, it will, it will estimate for example, how many people have read the coverage, what the domain 30 is, which is how authoritative the site is and all those kinds of things. So we kind of close the loop like that. So that's generally the way a PR campaign would work with us.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Thank you. And so it's all tracked as well, so you can exactly see the results. So how much sort of time and effort should you put into PR? I mean, should you be, is PR something you need to be thinking about constantly or at key times of year or key times in your business? Yeah. Like, you know how it is when you have a small business there's so much you could and should be doing so how much should we be thinking about PR? So,

Jessica (:

So it's a really good question. I would say the best advice is to speak to if you're thinking about it, but you're not quite sure the best advice is just to speak to someone about it. So they speak to a preop professionals. So for example, you know, I will always have a call with people. I will always take a call. We can always have half an hour to discuss a campaign coming up for free and just work out when might be the best time or a brand, for example. So even if you've been going with your brand for a while, you've never done PR actually, if you think it might be something to invest in is definitely worth having a chat and just saying, okay, this is me. This is where I am on the journey. This is what I've got coming up, when would be a good time.

Jessica (:

And then we can have a chat about it because there are things like awareness days, for example, you know, if your product has anything to do with mental health as a whole mental health awareness week. So it could be the, actually that's a really good time to get something out there that you've never talked about before in the public domain, it could be the, just the perfect Christmas present, or I had an opportunity to come through today for a new year's present, kind of, you know, start a fresh this year. And so I was speaking to a life coach about a product that she had, like four could be right there. So I guess if you speak to a good PR, it's their job to be aware of all this and the media landscape and awareness days and all the different times for selling in different products.

Jessica (:

And they could probably help you come up with a few ideas about the best time to promote. And equally they might say, you know, now is not the right time. You know, let's chat in six months time. So I think, I think having a kind of, you know, a very kind of initial free conversation with a PR professional is a really, really good idea because they'll give you an overview, give you a few ideas and, and hopefully make everything a bit clearer.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Thank you. So is it, guess it sounds like it's not something you need to be working on constantly necessarily. I mean, I guess you'd run out of things to say anyway, wouldn't you? Yeah.

Jessica (:

I mean, it is, it's really hard. We do have clients that we work with all the time and the job is to keep their name in the press and keep, keep what's coming out to their, their news, et cetera, reported. So that's definitely for, for kind of larger business or for business that constantly wants to be out there talking. It's a really good opportunity. And again, it's down to us to come up with the angles to come up with suggestions, but I'd say if it was a smaller businesses, smaller product, it is hard to kind of maintain that. I understand. I think it's probably much better to do it at certain points during the year. You know, there is, there's definitely an argument for maintaining momentum. So we work with them, flexible working platform, for example, which is one of our smaller clients.

Jessica (:

And we help launch some last year and we do work with them every month and get commentary out there and help them. We've just happened to win, starts up with a year actually, which is very exciting. So it was a minimal budget, but it's about keeping the presence up, but we would only do a couple of pieces of coverage a month for them. Whereas, you know, you might want to make your kind of bigger impact at two or three times a year. So I guess either approach could be right for you.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Thank you. And so if you've got a new products coming out or your first product coming out, how far in

advance of that, would you be thinking about PR because you mentioned that if you wait until it's all ready to go, that might possibly be slightly too late. How, what, what stage do you think people should start thinking about it?

Jessica (:

So I think, yeah, I think sooner rather than later, otherwise it might end up delaying the launch because you, like I mentioned before, you only get one chance to launch and you should be doing it all right. You should be doing or sort of lined, for example, you shouldn't launch online or on your website and then come and speak to a PR agency or PR consultant and say, I want to launch now because actually, you know, if we then sell it into a journalist, journalist goes to your site and says, Oh, actually you launched two months ago. Why is this new news? You know, that, that doesn't really work well. So everything needs to be aligned. So I I'd say about the time that you're pretty sure about your product and what you're talking, you know, and, and you've got a vague idea of when you, you want to launch maybe a couple of months before, it might be a good idea to just put some feeders out and ask about it, you know, even a month before is a great time to bring someone in.

Jessica (:

Because as I say, PR sometimes does bring up questions that the other channels don't bring up on social media, you've got ownership. You can really be saying what you want to communicate. And we want to use them live with marketing. Whereas PR you're kind of inviting a potential conversation with a journalist. You, you might be asking for questions about your brand, your service, your offering. So it's a good idea to, to be on the front first and to establish all that messaging in of actually launching.

Vicki Weinberg (:

That makes sense. Thank you. So I know, and I know this because I feel this myself and I can't be the only one that people can be a bit afraid of PR see, I know why I'm a bit scared of it. I'm just a bit scared of the, I guess the attention, which sounds a bit silly because I know that attention is possibly a good thing. So maybe do you mind talking a little bit about that and then perhaps any other fears that you've come across and how, you know, what people can think about to start slowly overcome them please?

Jessica (:

Yeah, of course, of course. I totally understand. I mean, to be honest, even doing this podcast today, I, I reminded myself that I shall I'm being interviewed now and I need to be, you know, ready and on the front foot, I think it's partly about a kind of control aspects and it's, it's really hard one. Sure. You're worried about being thrust into the spotlight questions are coming into you. It's not something you can control, like social media, for example, like I mentioned, I think people are often worried about the negative side of PR and being asked difficult questions, being put on the spot, being caught out. I think sometimes there's the perception that all journalists they're really there to, to catch people out.

Jessica (:

And I often say to people, you know, they're really not trying to, they're trying to get the best from you. They're trying to find out key information and hopefully help you and help your journey. And that's usually what, what it's all about. That's one of the key reasons why in our messaging sessions, we talk about getting all your fears out on the table. So what are you scared about, you know, is there anything in your past that you think, Oh, you know, I used to work with that person. They might pop up at some stage and talk about it, or, you know, I'm really worried that if they start interrogating this side of my brand or my product, that might be an issue. So really the first step is, is to get those fears out and to discuss them.

Jessica (:

And, you know, no fear is a silly fear. It's, it's definitely worth talking about everything. I'm a big fan of preparing and preparing for difficult questions, preparing for the worst. And if I ever did set anyone up for a media interview or even a podcast or a webinar, anything like that, we always have a chat beforehand. We always have a kind of prep prep chats before where I take them through some of the common questions they might be asked. I, I suggest approaches really on certain questions. I talk about media techniques as well. Cause there's a whole element of media training where if you get a difficult question, you can kind of bridge it and try and say something that you want to say.

Jessica (:

So I think being prepared is a really key part of not being so scared about it, but equally we have got a client, for example, who doesn't want to be interviewed. So he works for a really interesting business and it's very kind of pertinent at the moment in the pandemic. And there's been a lot of interest about interviewing him and how his company have coped. But he said to me, in a number of occasions, I don't want to be interviewed, I don't want to be in the spotlight. So that's absolutely fine. So I just, I'm very aware about the kind of opportunities where the journalists might come back and ask to interview him. And we don't go for those. We go for news, we go for written opinion and written commentary or written interviews, but I don't ever put him in a position where he might be interviewed and that's absolutely fine.

Jessica (:

Yeah.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Well thank you. Yeah, that is, that is, that is reassuring. So are there any other sort of from other clients, is there anything else did people ever say to you or I'd love to do PR, but is there anything else that comes up or is that the main one? Yeah,

Jessica (:

I mean, definitely we often have these conversations. I think, I think I often ended up having a kind of conversation with people about, you know, whether or not PR is right. Which sounds so silly, doesn't it, it

coming from someone who does, but you know, I think it is, it's definitely a choice and it's, you know, I think there's always benefits to it, but sometimes it's beneficial to do things at a certain time or in a certain way. So personal stories, I think stories and storytelling are really important. Parts of PR and often, you know, this is another thing we say to clients all the time. Often they're not so interested in your product, you know, that is interesting. And that's the thing you might be the most proud of, but actually the journey to get to your product could be the most interesting.

Jessica (:

So for example, the health product that we're promoting at the moment, the man who founded it was eight years on a journey founding, Oh, sorry, discovering and, and working out how to do the product. And it started off with a fertility journey with him and his wife when they experienced problems. And they, they, he basically invented this, this particular piece of equipment to help with fertility. And actually his story is probably more interesting than, than just talking about the product or the business. And actually journalists are very interested in history. So I think sometimes people can be very nervous about what to talk about in terms of their story and how personal they go, which I totally understand.

Jessica (:

And I think background, sometimes people have got what they consider a failed business behind them, or they've had to leave a company under a cloud or something like that. And I think sometimes people are worried about that, but there's often a kind of positive spin, really. There's often a reason why they left that business or the reason why it didn't work out first time and that's probably made them into the person they are. So again, we talk about those kinds of things as well, and how to talk about them in a more positive light and, and get the learnings from them. And I guess also PR is just something that, that feels a bit kind of app fab and a bit champagne lunches and help them.

Jessica (:

And a certain type of person does PR not me, you know, I'm, I'm kind of ordinary. Why would I do PR? And I think it's got a really bad image, to be honest, it's got really bad reputation. And that's why we always say like, it's really not about going out there and wining and dining spending, lots of money with a, you know, a certain person or anything like that really. It's very much about you and your story and your product and just working out the best ways and the best audiences. So I think that we often do talk through a lot of the kind of concerns at the start of working with someone and, and hopefully, you know, help alleviate some of those concerns as well.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Thank you. And I really liked what you said your first point about the storytelling aspect, because I think that, I guess what I'm hearing is you need to be fairly flexible because the thing that you feel is, you know, the, the, maybe the interesting part or the important part actually might not be the hook if that's the right word that go for. So I think that was a really interesting point as well. Maybe not much on what you think the message

is.

Jessica (:

It's so true. And I think that's why I would encourage someone to talk to someone who does PR because yeah, often people come and say, I think that this is a really interesting part of what we do and let's go on about this. And I say, well, that is interesting to a certain sex or the press, but actually the fact that you, you know, produce this on humans have started a business during maternity leave and, you know, and you've done so well since, or this was your side hustle or whatever, that's actually as interesting or potentially more interesting than the product itself. So, and then another thing we, we talk about as well is not being, I guess, being more open to opportunities.

Jessica (:

So often we have to go with what the journalists and the press want to write about rather than what you want to say and meet in the middle. So everyone wants to talk about them and their product and their story, et cetera, et cetera, which is interesting. But sometimes a journalists might want to pick up on an aspect of it. So it could be about, I dunno, someone someone's starting a side hustle and turning it into a business. And the only mention they have of your business might be a mention or a link. So it's not all about what you're doing, but actually they'd like to talk to you and it could be for a national publication about the aspects. So there's often that kind of meeting of meeting in the middle of what a client wants to talk about and what journalist wants to hear.

Jessica (:

So I would say with those kinds of things, it's, it's really important to kind of embrace those opportunities. So if you're happy to be out there talking about your products, then be open to actually talking about a different aspect of your product or your story or your journey or your life. You know, it could be the fact that you're in

business with your partner, for example, you know, all your family, that could be the focus of a piece, and you could be part of that, but it's still a means of you getting your story and your product out there as well. So absolutely there were lots of different aspects that are interesting for publications and journalists that you might not think yourself could be interesting. So I just, I just encourage people to be really open about that.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Yeah. Thank you. Sorry. So it's all, it's all PR good PR then would you say

Jessica (:

That's a good question. So I, I mean, not necessarily because, you know, as I've just written a piece, actually a blog post about crisis communication, I was asked to comment on a local publication on crisis communication. And this year, one of my points was that actually even the kind of smallest of businesses has been thrust into the limelight with the crisis, with the pandemic, lots of questions have been asked of businesses, you know, flexible working practice things that they probably thought they'd never be asked

about, have been up there. So actually if you're in the press for something bad, then no, I wouldn't say that's necessarily something, you know, a good piece of PR, however, it could be T for you to re-look at your practices and really at the way, you're doing something and come out and give the positive angle of the back of it.

Jessica (:

So it could, could be a springboard. But I think, I think that kind of touches generally on crisis communications. And I think that's, that's one of the reasons we talk to people about potential bad things that could come up and work out what should be said about it. If there's something you're particularly concerned about something that's not great, we talk about on a bad day, you know, what, what kind of parts of the business or the offering are you not a hundred percent about? And is there anything we could say about that? Or are you working to change that? So I think, you know, you can never be in full control over your presence in the media.

Jessica (:

People will always pick up about different angles, but you can definitely be prepared. And, and mostly I'd say with the small businesses we work with, it is positive. You know, people aren't there to catch them out. There are terrible things lurking around the corner, but it's definitely worth being prepared. If there is anything that you were a little bit concerned about, you know, writing a few lines about it or just understanding that area is a really good idea.

Vicki Weinberg (:

That's really thank you. I didn't even think about the fact that you could get PR without even trying. I didn't even occur to me. Okay. So let's, if it's okay, just talk a little bit about what you need to get right before you, before you start doing any PR. Cause I saw you had a blog post on this, which I'm going to link to in the show notes for anyone who wants to go over and have a rate, but, but what would you say are the things that you need to have in place before you start thinking about it?

Jessica (:

Absolutely. Okay. Is a really key word actually. And we, we do talk about this a lot, so thank you for featuring our blog post on this. So websites. So often people come to us and say, Oh, the website's almost done is probably good enough to launch with, and then I'll have a look at it and there'll be kind of typos missing pages, missing links, those kinds of things. I guess, you know, you need to think about your website as your first sales person, really. And from our perspective, if we're promoting it as a business and the publication features your, your website, the journalists will have a look and go and see. And actually if we're saying one thing and how smart and professional you are and your website is saying another thing, you know, that's, that's not going to look fantastic and it might even prevent them from putting the link there.

Jessica (:

So I'd say even if it's a base of the website and you're going to build on it, just make sure what's, there is representative of what you're doing, what you're saying, and you're happy with it, images. And this is another thing we talk about and it's difficult, but often I say, you know, have you got some nice images of your team and your products and you as a person and people will say, Oh no, I don't really like images. I'm not going to do any, or yeah, I do have some images, but I'm not really happy with them. You know? And I say, again, it's an investment. And I do understand we have to do our own headshots and you know, you have to pay to have them done professionally, but it's an investment that's really, really worth it.

Jessica (:

You, if you were in a publication, you want to be turning the page and seeing yourself and not cringing. You want to be happy to see that and to share that coverage. So I'd say it's worth investing and getting some really nice headshots done that you're really happy with it. You can have lots of headshots done and only choose the one best one. And that could be the one we use, you know, for ongoing. So definitely have a think about really nice images and headshots of yourself. Contact details is a really key thing to kind of work out and who's going to be speaking and available. It might just be you, or it might be a couple of you in the business that are happy to be contacted, but then in which case, make sure you make the PR person aware of when you're around, when you're not around, when you can be disturbed, when you can't be, we had it the other week where we got one of our clients onto the BBC, but it all happened so quickly.

Jessica (:

It was an interview that was being filmed the next day. And I was trying to get hold of him and he wasn't around. And I didn't realize it was, he was in school with his daughter. So it's things like that. That actually, sometimes we do need a really quick response on something, even if it's a WhatsApp. So I'd say all the contact details, mobiles and details of when you are and aren't around and can be contacted social media and marketing activity, all ready to go and, you know, work out your kind of key channels. I know you probably talked to other people about social media, but you know, it's difficult to run across, you know, five or six channels. It might just be two or three key ones, but just make sure they look okay, they've got the correct links and they've got the correct images in and that you're ready to respond.

Jessica (:

So if someone does reach out to you, you know, potentially journalists could reach out to you, we flag you to someone and they might send you a quick message, just be ready, ready to respond, ready to come back and, and make sure your channels look really nice. And then I guess the messaging, as we've talked about just what you can and you can't say, and what you're comfortable saying or not saying, and, you know, we obviously do it with people and do a big session with people, but even if it's just a discussion around that that's really, really useful. It could be that there's a word that you don't want to be associated with. Just make that really, really clear. And then that can be avoided in any kind of PR that, that goes on.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Thank you. That's really useful. Okay. So let's say we've done all of that. We have everything in place and we're ready to start with our PR what other few practical things we can do to get started? What would be the bevy first steps perhaps?

Jessica (:

Okay. So I mean, obviously, you know, I'm a PR professional, so I'd say it's good to talk to a PR professional, but if you want to do it yourself, you know, absolutely. I understand that people have done that really, really successfully. So I'd say the key elements are your elevator pitch. So what you are In kind of 10 seconds, a couple of lines, couple of phrases, exactly summing up what the product is or the offering is. And just being really clear. I'm really happy with that. I'd say, make sure you get together the story behind the product and the brands. So how did it all start? You know, what's your background? How did you first think about the idea and what were the steps you took?

Jessica (:

How long did it take you to get there, et cetera. So all those kinds of things, if you can write it down in, in a few paragraphs or a page, I think that's always really interesting. I think sometimes people keen to make their brand seem a bit bigger than it is, and it can be quite anonymous on things, but actually that's the opposite of what we need for PR. We need the detail of the story and everything you're comfortable to share. I think have a really good think about your target audience and where you think it's realistic to, to try and sell and to try and be in their kind of mindset in the zone right down to the kind of age sex. If they're married, not married, you know, just some generalisms about the kind of people you want to sell to.

Jessica (:

And if it's in a geographical area, and then I guess the extension of that is just to keep an eye out for press in that kind of sector. Is there anywhere where you see your competitors products appearing or are there any local publications really nice local glossy publications that do a kind of round up of products that you'd absolutely love to be in? So start making a list of those kinds of publications and then I'd say start to be social as well. So start to follow them online. So Twitter is a really good place for journalists and media Instagram, if it's visual as well. So those are two really good places to start and, and start to see the kind of things that's being said. And this thing puts out there as well.

Jessica (:

And yeah, and I think the local thing is something to really, really talk about because I think that people often want to kind of pass over local press. So I don't think it always has the reputation it deserves, but actually it's a great place to start being local is an angle in itself. So if you're based in Kent and you, you know, you're a camp based maker, actually the can press could be really interested. In fact, I just sold in a product to inside Kent yesterday for a gift guide Roundup. And they were so chuffed to feature it because the maker was based in Kent. And so, you know, that's an extra angle to kind of get yourself out of there. So I would say definitely consider local press local consumer press and also local business press.

Jessica (:

Cause that's another nice place to get your story out there and to enter the right audience. So have a little look around and see what kind of publications and media there are out there.

Vicki Weinberg (:

Oh, perfect. Thank you. Wow. You Shared such a lot. That's I think that's a really, that's really good. And I think that really gives people something to go away and, you know, if they decided they're going to do it on their own or even if they want a bit of help, I think that it gives people a lot of things to go away and think about to get started. That's fantastic. Thank you. So I've got one final question before we finish up, if that's okay. Yeah. Which is, what is your number one piece of PR advice? What is your top tip that you'd like everyone to know and take away with them?

Jessica (:

That that is hard as you see. I quite like talking, so I probably have lots of them, I guess, what would I say? I guess it would be around the uniqueness of what you're offering. So it is really hard to, to pin down, you know, we're the only person who does that. We're the only product who does this, or I'm the only person that does that. But the might be something that might be a reason that you started your product or business in the first place. And it's really good to distill that essence. So what do you offer that other people don't offer?

Jessica (:

What does your product give other people didn't give, because that is going to be the key to everything that you do. So it could be something about your background or your story. You know, I'm the only person who does X, Y, and Z. I couldn't find anything else like this on the market. So I created it myself. What is the one thing that you think would, would sell your product or your service above all others? It's not easy, but it's definitely worth honing that down and, and really working that out. Cause I think that could be the key to, to really amplifying yourself in press in social media, on your website. So just make, make sure you try and know that nugget of, of what makes you unique.

Vicki Weinberg (:

That's amazing. Thank you so much. And I am going to put all of the links over in the show notes. People can find you easily, but where's the best place to people to go? Where should, where should we start?

Jessica (:

So carnsight.com is a website that C A R N S I G H T.com. It's the name of our, my house in Como. So that's why it's con slate. People often ask I'm I'm on Twitter, LinkedIn, et cetera. But I guess, I guess the website has got all that kind of information. And as you mentioned, we do blog every week. So hopefully there's a few kind of extra bits and tips in our blog and some free content that people could have a look at and digest.

Vicki Weinberg (:

That's amazing. Thank you. And I really liked your blog if I haven't said that already and I will make sure I link to the article we mentioned in the show notes and actually by the time this comes out in a couple of months, if there's anything else that I think might be relevant, I'll put a direct link in as well. So people can find that really easily. Well, thank you so much for being here. I've loved talking to you and thank you for everything you've shared.

Jessica (:

Thank you. Thank you. It's been really nice to do this. Thank you very much.

Vicki Weinberg (:

You're welcome. Right? Okay. I'm trying to stop causing without I always lose my thing. Wait, here we go.

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