I was unhappy and depressed and in a dead-end corporate career with high-stress/low reward. Management passed me over for countless promotions. Then, it got worse, I was fired from my job and my career was in shambles.
All of his was before I had a personal brand. Eventually, I got tired of being the one always chasing opportunities. I decided to invest in myself in new and creative ways.
I developed the courage to walk away from my corporate career despite having a large mortgage and two small children at home. I got an MBA. I became an entrepreneur. I started creating content and blogging which helped me cultivate a large following on social media.
But it wasn’t until I started getting mentioned in top media outlets that the significant shift came.
If you’re an entrepreneur, here are six ways to use media appearances to build a personal brand that stands out and creates trust with your audience.
1) Be seen as an expert
The question every startup faces when building a brand is how do we tell our audience we are the best when all our competitors are also claiming to be the best? Well, you can shout about being the best all day in your marketing campaigns, but it’s much more effective when other people sing your praises. Getting media exposure paints you as an expert in your field.
There is simply no better way to build your credibility than having reputable people in the media include you in their stories.
2) Land higher-level business meetings
Now, CEO’s and top-level entrepreneurs are reaching out to me for meetings. They wouldn’t have given me the time of day five years ago. I get emails that start with, “Hey, John, I saw you in ‘xyz media outlet’, I’d like to discuss…”
Not only will getting media placements attract more meeting invites, you can use your media appearances as touch points with clients, investors, and stakeholders. Send them the link to the media spot and let them know you thought they may appreciate seeing it. Then, ask them for their feedback.
3) Find your target audience through enhanced SEO
If you build it, they will come! If only getting web traffic was that easy. The reality is you need to build high-quality links back to your website to boost your domain authority, rank in search engines, and overall discoverable of your business online.
Not only will boosting your SEO help your target audience find you but getting media placements places you in front of their audience. Whether it’s a tv appearance, radio or podcast interview, guest post, or a thought leadership quote within an article in a reputable publication, PR puts your name in front of your target audience in ways you just cannot do on your own.
4) Get verified on social media
I get asked all the time, “How do I get verified on social media.” (Especially on Twitter where I am verified). Getting your profiles verified on social media enhances your credibility. It tells your clients you are who you say your are online and that your profiles are authentic. In a business world where people are always on the lookout for scams, having a blue check mark by your name on social media gives you instant third-party credibility.
To be verified on social media platforms, you must have valid appearances within high-authority media outlets. You won’t even be considered without media exposure.
5) Message clarity via storytelling
Launching a creative PR campaign allows your customers to learn about who you are, your values, what you do, and the mission behind your business. Telling your story in the media is a unique opportunity to connect with your audience. Now more than ever, people want to do business with someone they feel like they know and trust.
Consumers like to get the behind-the-scenes insights into what it takes to launch a successful startup, build a brand, or overcome a particular obstacle that stood in your way. Telling these stories helps consumers develop a relationship with your brand.
6) Enhanced exposure to investors
If you’ve ever tried to get a business funded you know that getting the attention and trust of venture capitalists is no easy task. There’s no better way to promote your business as being a worthwhile business to fund than getting in the media. Research press opportunities to land in outlets that investors from within your area of business pay attention to. Then, work on developing interesting story ideas and pitches to land placements in those outlets.
The best PR campaigns are creative, unique, and newsworthy. They allow you to cover every aspect of communicating what your business does and why consumers should listen to you, the expert.
Afterward, you’ll have an established personal brand and the credibility you need to grow your business.