Animal Advocacy Organizations Can Benefit from Public Relations Too

When anyone mentions animal advocacy, rescue or educational organizations people often think of the Humane Society of the United States, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and the World Wildlife Fund to name just a few.

These groups have many thousands of supporters and deep pockets when it comes to public relations. Well-funded animal advocacy groups also make good use of the thousands of volunteers and donors that support them through social media sharing, grass roots fund raising and social responsibility crusading. All these efforts help raise awareness about the good work these organizations do.

Organizations with small budgets can also benefit from PR to help increase donations and influence legislation in support of animals. Ripley PR’s tactics for animal welfare organizations are done carefully and strategically, and can help your organization reach more donors, improve your community relations, and increase visibility without breaking the bank.

We support organizations dedicated to helping educate others about the world’s furry, fuzzy and feathered friends, and our team has volunteered many hours to help these worthy groups in their efforts to improve the condition of animals of all kinds. We have partnered with animal-friendly clients in achieving public awareness of their work, helping them gain visibility for their cause amidst the crowded competition for the animal welfare dollar.

It’s not easy to stand out among all the groups vying for attention and notoriety, however, we can help. By hiring a firm that has a solid reputation in PR, and a record of giving back as well, you know you’ll feel good about your decision. You’ll get a professional PR agency with a top-notch track record in getting your group the kind of attention you want, and you will be working with like-minded individuals who actually care. It’s a win-win partnership.

Why settle for less? Call Ripley PR to learn how we can turn your organization around by helping you help more animals than you ever thought you could.

 

Heather Ripley, Founder/CEO

This post was written by on January 17, 2018


Use Construction Public Relations to Recruit Workers Through Social Media

Of all the challenges faced by construction companies, recruiting skilled workers is a perennial sore spot. An estimated 30 percent of construction workers exited the field when the housing market crashed in 2006, and the labor pool has never recovered.

Digital recruitment is becoming mandatory in all fields, and construction is no exception. The importance of using social media for brand development and recruiting continues to grow. That’s where partnering with an experienced construction public relations agency to implement a long-term social media strategy can pay dividends for your construction company.

The importance of social media

According to a report, “Attracting Young People into Construction Field Positions,” prepared for The Foundation of Wall and Ceiling Industry, the construction industry can no longer rely on traditional ways to reach potential applicants:

For young people, communication involves the use of social media. Social media networking will play an important role in future recruitment. Facebook and LinkedIn are becoming the primary ways of recruiting talent in America right now, (Mark) Breslin says. “It’s not Craigslist anymore. It’s definitely not newspapers. It’s social media. Now that’s a problem, because most people in older generations have no idea what it’s about. They may need to hire a consultant to assist them in crafting recruitment strategies through social media.”

Digital recruitment and public relations

According to research, about 94 percent of U.S. residents seeking employment check corporate social media pages when looking for jobs; however, according to LinkedIn, about 75 percent of potential candidates aren’t even actively looking for a new job. That leave a huge pool of potential applicants that could be reached with the right social media strategy.

A construction PR partner can advise your business on social media outreach and advertising strategies to find the skilled craft labor candidates you need. A social media strategy will also improve your brand recognition while educating potential applicants about your business.

Ripley PR can craft the right social media strategy for your construction firm. Let us help you recruit the best skilled laborers in the industry. Contact us today at 865-977-1973.

Joel Davis, Senior Content Specialist

This post was written by on January 16, 2018


If you don’t have an online newsroom on your website, you may be missing out

When it comes to B2B public relations, earned media coverage is one of the greatest assets for promoting your company. Instead of buying advertisements, the most effective way to improve your brand image and reputation is through compelling stories published by trusted local or national media, trade publications and broadcast media.

One way to encourage the media to write about your company is to make it easier for them to gather the necessary information. That’s where establishing an online newsroom for your company can help.

Online Newsrooms

It’s pretty simple. It can be a missed opportunity if a journalist is researching your company and can’t find contact information or learn about its history or download headshots of important executives or products.

An online newsroom is a basic component of a B2B public relations strategy. It should pull together all the basic information about your company into a convenient format for journalists to access. It should include company information, press releases, logos, and images.

Here are some of the elements necessary for a comprehensive online newsroom:

  • Press kit. Compile important information about your company into a downloadable press kit. It can contain bios of the executive staff, the history of the company, brochures, company highlights, and copies of media coverage.
  • Contact lists. Journalists will go to your website to find out about your B2B company and will look for contacts. Include a list of trained spokespeople for your business. The contact list should be current.
  • Having no images available of your company’s staff, products, or products reduces the chance that any articles will be published. Providing accessible images can make the difference between earning coverage or being ignored.
  • An online newsroom can be a good place to promote video highlights about your company and can also link to its YouTube channel.

Let Us Help

An online newsroom is just part of having a successful PR strategy for your company. An experienced public relations agency partner like Ripley PR can also develop a media outreach strategy to get your company’s name out to the media through the consistent use of press releases and the regular development of social media and blog content. If you’re ready to find the best ways to promote your business, contact us today at 865-977-1973.

Heather Ripley, Founder/CEO

This post was written by on January 15, 2018


Crisis PR: Six things you should do if your company is hit with sexual misconduct allegations

Sexual harassment or misconduct allegations have felled figures ranging from a U.S. senator and a hip-hop mogul to a folksy radio host in recent memory.

Some crisis-management firms are reaping the benefits as people – some not even yet accused of misconduct — sign up for reputation-management services to keep their names out of the news.

Our goal at Ripley PR, a Knoxville-based global B2B public relations agency specializing in franchise, manufacturing, tech and building trades, is generally to get our clients names in the news. We do provide crisis-management services, and create crisis plans and provide extensive training for our clients. Sometimes the best crisis management is avoiding crises in the first place. The second-best response to a crisis is having a solid plan in place.

It’s apparent, however, that years of company policies and courses on preventing sexual harassment have failed to adequately communicate that sexual misconduct is intolerable and fatal to reputations.

Your company should ultimately call a professional public relations firm to help navigate sexual misconduct allegations. Here are some ways we would recommend your company respond to public allegations of sexual misconduct so your company, its employees and leaders can avoid tainted reputations and possible financial exposure:

  1. Promptly assemble a team of legal, human resources and communications professionals (like Ripley) to determine the best response.
  2. Be as transparent as possible if the press picks up on the allegations or a civil suit is possible.
  3. Articulate steps your company will take to address the matter and prevent its occurrence in the future.
  4. If you don’t have a companywide sexual harassment policy, create one.
  5. Carefully craft any emails or other correspondence referencing the allegations.
  6. Do not automatically discount the accuser’s credibility.

We recommend our clients have a strict sexual-harassment policy in place and review it often with employees. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission provides an overview of what constitutes sexual harassment. Take every claim seriously. Again, crisis avoidance is the best crisis management, but when allegations of sexual misconduct fly, they must be taken very seriously.

Thomas Fraser, Senior Content Specialist

This post was written by on January 12, 2018


Three boxes to check when hiring a B2B PR firm

Once you’ve decided you need to hire a public relations firm, selecting the right fit for your company will help determine whether the partnership thrives.

Getting off on the right foot is just as important in hiring a business-to-business public relations firm as it is when you embark on any other relationship. The key steps are making a good first impression, establishing boundaries and resB2B Public Relationsponsibilities, and working together toward common goals.

Here are three tip

s to keep in mind when vetting potential PR partners:

Decide what you want to accomplish with your PR strategy. A B2B approach is different from a consumer-focused approach. Establishing relationships with suppliers and customers should be a priority. Talk with prospective firms about realistic expectations for your business, given economic conditions, the makeup of your market sector and other factors.

Make sure the agency understands your business and your company culture. A PR firm that does not thoroughly know – or at least extensively research – a business sector is more likely to make tactical mistakes while implementing your plan. Knowing your company culture is one of the ways a PR firm can find ways to show where you differ from your competitors. They more the PR firm knows, the more it can help you achieve your goals.

Determine how you will gauge the PR firm’s performance. Working with the firm, you can determine what actions it should take on your behalf and how best to measure their effectiveness in light of your goals and expectations.

Through this process, you also will find out if your company and the PR firm have found the key ingredient in any business relationship – communication.

If you’re looking for a PR firm to help you stand out in your market, call the professionals at Ripley PR. We can work with you to develop a B2B public relations strategy that will help you reach your business goals.

Scott Barker

This post was written by on January 10, 2018


New year, new you: Two PR tactics to help amplify your success in 2018

Whatever 2018 means to you and your manufacturing company, we want to be there to help you make it the most successful year yet. When it comes to manufacturing public relations, we’re constantly strategizing with international and publicly held manufacturing companies to help boost their earned media presence and tell their stories.

Here are two tactics we’re incorporating in 2018 to help our manufacturing partners get the most out of the new year:

  1. Employee spotlights – Whether they’re sweeping the factory floor or running the accounting department, from top to bottom the people that work in your company deserve to be recognized for the work they do. Employee spotlights are a great way to show thanks to your employees while telling their story. We’ve uncovered some amazing and unique stories for our clients just by asking a few simple questions, and those stories can then be told either through your blog and social media channels, or pitched to the media for even bigger coverage. Employee spotlights are also a great recruiting tool, as it helps those interested in working with your company have a better understanding of who works there and what it means to be a part of your company.
  2. Video case studies and testimonials – Case studies and testimonials have always been a powerful tool. While we’ve written plenty of both, the growing need for video content from audiences across all platforms is not going away. If you’re looking to develop more testimonials or case studies this year, we encourage you to incorporate video whenever possible. Video case studies and testimonials are more powerful than plain text because they engage in a way that only a moving, visual medium can. You see and hear the people involved, and music and other visual effects can be added to help bring out the emotion of the story being told.

Contact Ripley PR today and we can help you incorporate these two tactics as well as other proven methods to help you make 2018 your best year yet.

JD Sizemore, Account Supervisor

This post was written by on January 8, 2018


How You Respond During a Crisis Says a Lot

Every home service business owner would love it if every day were filled with service calls and positive customer interactions. However, sometimes a crisis may arise that puts a stop to everything you had planned for the day. But, how do you prepare something like that? How should you respond? A home service public relations agency can develop a crisis communications plan for you to help steer you through the toughest of situations. Without addressing a specific crisis here, there are certain steps you can take to be prepared. That’s where a professional public relations team can help.

Here are the key benefits your crisis communications plan should provide:

  • Identify the crisis – Whether you are a plumbing, electrical or HVAC business, a public relations agency with expertise in home services will help you identify various incidents and accidents that could constitute a crisis. However, if you have a strong crisis communications plan developed, you can use it to steer you through any abnormal situation. You can’t think of every scenario, but identifying potential and realistic crises will help you prepare for the worst that could happen.
  • Prepare your team – Your crisis communications team should all be on the same page. Make sure you identify who you want to be notified in the first minutes after a crisis occurs. The sooner you can get everyone up to speed with details, the better. Other than top managers, don’t forget to include your PR agency in case a crisis pops up. Make a quick call list so you can save valuable minutes when responding to a crisis – it could save you a lot of heartache.
  • Initial response actions – In the first moments of a crisis, information will fly fast. The media will be clamoring for anything you can give them. Your plan should contain step-by-step initial response actions for you and your team to take. Prepare by practicing this initial response, and if a crisis erupts, stay with the plan. It may save your business.

No one wants to experience a crisis. However, having a well thought out crisis communications plan will benefit you and your business. A strong PR agency can help you develop that plan.

If any of the above resonates with you and your home service business, we at Ripley PR would love to talk with you. Not only are we a home service public relations agency, we know how to help prepare for even the worst day at the office.

John Cherry, Senior Brand Manager

This post was written by on January 4, 2018


Struggling with Awareness of Your Vegan Product?

vegan public relations can help you reach vegan customers

Public Relations can help you create a demand for your plant-based consumer product

Six percent of Americans now identify as vegan – up 600 percent since 2014 when only one percent of Americans described themselves as vegan. The $2.2 billion vegan food industry is skyrocketing with forecasters saying the alternative meat market will hit $5.2 billion by 2020, and the plant-based milk sector is set to hit $16 billion by 2018.

This key consumer trend is driving demand for meat-free and plant-based products. And you want to make sure you’re part of this booming industry.

How do you get your product in front of people who identify as vegan? Your ideal customer is probably that person blocking the grocery aisle while they scrutinize every food label, or fiddles with their phone to do a quick Google search, asking “Is x product Vegan?” They also don’t think twice before phoning a restaurant to check whether they have vegan food, or phoning a food manufacturing company to make sure a product’s ingredients are certified vegan.

Here are a few ways how vegan public relations can help you reach this educated audience to help you sell more product and grow your business:

Great content

Education is a big part of this consumer trend. You need great content out there to satisfy this need of your vegan audience so they know your product is, in fact, plant-based.

Search Engine Optimization

Your content needs to be optimized for SEO, as you only have a few seconds during those mid-grocery-aisle Google searches to appear at the top of search results. Having a team of public relations professionals on your side to help create relevant content for the appropriate communication channels is key.

Boost retail listings through end-consumers requesting your products

Media relations plays a big part in creating awareness of your vegan products. The more your audience reads and hears about your products from authoritative media outlets in the industry, the more likely they will be to look out for your products on-shelf, or ask for them if they are not listed with their local grocery store. We know they don’t ponder asking whether a product is vegan or whether a restaurant has vegan food, so why would they delay asking their grocery store to add your product to their shelves?

To find out more about how vegan public relations can help you drive demand for your product, contact the avid vegan public relations experts at Ripley PR.

 

 

Celeste Vlok, Senior Brand Manager

This post was written by on January 2, 2018


How PR can help your tech company capitalize on a hot start

tech startup public relations for growthAre you a tech startup looking to gain exposure? Public relations could be your best investment. But first, you need to answer three key questions:

  1. Who’s your audience?
  2. What’s your message?
  3. How can you best reach your audience with your message?

Let’s dive into these questions a little deeper:

Who’s your audience?

As a tech startup, you’re usually trying to connect with:

  • Investors
  • Talent
  • Customers

Knowing your audience is crucial before you craft your message, as it will shape not only your story but also your approach.

What’s your message?

In short: your message is everything. It’s what defines your position to your audience, and can potentially make or break your company during your crucial growth phase. To find your message, you need to take a sincere look at who you are, what you’re accomplishing, and why anyone should care.

One way to find these answers is what we call the “So what?” exercise. At Ripley PR, we use this with our clients to help them get to the root of these questions. The exercise is simple. Every time you answer a fundamental question about your business, the next follow up question is “So what?”

This exercise teaches you to get out of your bubble and dig deeper for answers that are usually either A) not obvious to you because you’re too absorbed in your business to see from an outsider’s perspective, or B) not the generic response that any company, regardless of their uniqueness, could claim.

As you dig, you’ll start to surprise yourself with your answers, while simultaneously discovering what your unique selling proposition is.

How can you best reach your audience with your message?

Now that you know your audience and what your message is, you can now work toward understanding how to deliver that message to maximize exposure and effectiveness. It’s going to take a different approach to connect with venture capital investors than it will trying to get top talent in the door, however usually it all starts with the same process: figuring out who’s covering your industry and/or delivering messages to your audience, and then making—and maintaining—connections with them.

If you’re looking to gain exposure for your tech startup, contact Ripley PR today. We deliver results day-in and day-out for our clients and can work with you to define your audience, discover your message, and deliver it to the right outlets to reach your goals.

JD Sizemore, Account Supervisor

This post was written by on December 27, 2017


Are You Selling a Product or Service to Home Service Companies?

If you own a B2B home service business, one of the most important aspects of your business is your reputation with your clients. Without it, other businesses will not recommend you to their own business associates. Since word-of-mouth is one of the most important and effective methods of business success in B2B relations, it pays to pay attention to what your reputation says about you and your business.Manufacturing news graphic.

We know this is true because at Ripley PR, one of the leading B2B public relations firms in the U.S., we have deep knowledge of and understanding about the home service industry, from both the B2B and B2C angles. We have been specializing in B2B home service businesses for nearly six years, and prior to that I worked as a journalist, PR executive and in the home service industry with one of the largest home service franchisors in the U.S.

Our team is keenly equipped to decode what makes reporters and news media pay attention to the pitches they get via press releases, media alerts, phone calls, emails and news they see on social media outlets like Twitter and Facebook – Ripley PR’s business is promoting your business.  The saying, “It takes one to know one,” especially applies when it comes to working with the media, and by hiring senior-level PR professionals with a passion for making home service businesses dominate their markets, Ripley has had tremendous success generating interest for our clients in the home service industry.

What does this matter to you, you might wonder? As we said in the first paragraph, reputation is everything and if you want to make your B2B brand stand out from the rest, ask other industry businesses who have experienced extreme success using Ripley PR. See what they say about working with a firm that has been making a name for itself, and more importantly, making a name for its clients like you.  Ripley PR is well-known and trusted by industry media and influencers. If you want to make your B2B service industry business to increase its bottom line, call Ripley PR to find out what we can do for you.

Heather Ripley, Founder/CEO

This post was written by on December 26, 2017


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