Climbing the Ranks: How PR Can Boost Your B2B Search Engine Results

To sell, you have to be seen. To be seen, people have to be able to find you. In today’s world that means ranking high in internet search engine results. One effective route to improving your search engine optimization (SEO) is B2B public relations.

It takes more than just a slapped-together website for your B2B company to rank well in search results. An experienced B2B PR agency like Ripley PR knows the right combination of content marketing and earned media coverage to boost SEO organically.

Writing in The Guardian, Rebecca Scully champions the ability of PR agencies to provide the compelling content that will get earn your website clicks and eyeballs:

This puts PR agencies at the front of this brave new world of creating content that brands own, earn and pay for. Why? It’s in a PR agency’s DNA – telling stories that are entertaining, interesting and relevant to a specific audience, which that audience wants to tell others about.

Keywords

Ripley PR’s experienced team can analyze your business and discover the best keywords to attract the attention of your industry and target audience. Incorporating these keywords into content such as blogs and press releases will increase your company’s visibility to search engines.

Earned media

Just as important as the content produced for your company is the content produced about your company by online and traditional media outlets. Earned media coverage is far more effective at garnering attention for your business than advertising. Ripley PR can leverage our experience and extensive contacts within the media to gain your company the coverage it deserves.

Social media

The right social media strategy will allow your business to amplify the signal of content marketing and media coverage through promoting the items on platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn.  For help with increasing your search engine rankings through B2B public relations, contact Ripley PR at 865-977-1973.  Our team is ready to assist.

Joel Davis, Senior Content Specialist

This post was written by on September 22, 2017


Harnessing the power of storytelling to sell franchises

Six stories you can tell to get prospects to fall in love with your franchise

typewriter-everyone-has-a-story-franchise-public-relationsBefore there was the written word, the only way we passed along information from person to person, group to group, and generation to generation was through storytelling.

Storytelling is and will always be a powerful medium, but it’s not just the novelists, TV networks and Hollywood producers who can take advantage of storytelling. Your franchise can benefit from telling great stories, too.

As franchise public relations experts, we help find and tell stories for our clients all the time.

Below are the six stories we’ve found to have the most impact on potential franchisees:

  1. Bad turned good stories – If you have a franchisee who has struggled to get off the ground, but was then able to turn things around to become wildly successful, that’s a story you need to tell. Call it redemption, call it grace, call it whatever you want, but people are naturally drawn to stories that show people in seemingly overwhelming situations strive and succeed at turning things around.
  2. Human interest stories – Emotion is what drives great storytelling. Each one of your franchisees has a story, and more than a few have a “story behind the story” of how they got to where they are today. Telling their story is a great way to connect with franchise prospects because it will bring about sympathy and even motivate them to join your franchise because they connect with the story in an emotional way.
  3. Happy franchisees stories – Happy franchisees are some of the easiest stories to tell. They are instant champions of your brand, and since they are living the day-to-day of franchise life in your system, they can offer unique insights to prospects about what to expect and why at the end of the day, it is all worthwhile.
  4. Life changing stories – People get into franchising because they want to own their own business but want the security of a proven business model and brand name. For some, it’s about getting out from under a boss. For others, it’s about starting a business based on their passion. Whatever the motivation, the opportunity you’ve afforded your franchisees has undoubtedly changed their lives. That’s a story worth telling, and one that will encourage prospects to look at their own life and envision how they can change it for the better by joining your franchise.
  5. Culture/leadership stories – When telling prospects stories, you want to focus mostly on the lives of your franchisees. That being said, there is an opportunity to show how your corporate team has helped your franchisees. Your dedication to their success is a story that will convince prospects you’re not just in it for the royalties.
  6. End user stories – Happy customers make happy franchisees. If a customer is over the moon with an experience they had with your franchise, that’s worth sharing. Not only does it show how great your brand is, it’s also a complement to the franchisee who received the praise in the first place.

If you’re looking to sell more franchises, give Ripley PR a call today. We can help you discover and tell your stories to engage prospects and make them fall in love with your franchise.

JD Sizemore, Account Supervisor

This post was written by on September 20, 2017


SEO in the Manufacturing Industry: Why Public Relations is Key

As manufacturing organizations start paying more attention to search engine optimization (SEO) efforts that will help them increase visibility and drive more traffic to their websites, decision makers in the industry start to realize that this shift in marketing and public relations is also a shift in the way they promote their products.

Ten years ago, writing a press release on a new innovation was enough for manufacturers to position themselves as thought leaders and build a solid reputation. Today, however, building the right strategy that encompasses brand identity, showcases new products and demonstrates customer empathy, while focusing on increasing traffic, is key.

When developing content that aligns with a solid SEO strategy, manufacturing companies must consider:

  • What are your target audience’s pain points and how do these translate into keywords?
  • What services are you trying to highlight and how easy is it for your audience to find them?
  • What websites are you competing with?
  • How important is it to showcase your awards, certifications and experience?
  • Are you taking advantage of the right channels and platforms?
  • Are you investing in the right tools and software?

Through public relations, these questions are easily answered, as a knowledgeable team can easily develop content specifically tailored to your audience, while communicating your message and staying true to your brand. As important as it is to develop great content for your customers and prospects, it’s equally important for your content to be relevant, easy to find and follow your company’s voice. If your content is not being found by your audience, it will be impossible to drive business success.

Is your manufacturing company ready to work with a robust manufacturing public relations team that can not only write exceptional content, but also understands how search algorithms work? To learn more about how Ripley PR can help you gain visibility through SEO, contact us at 865-977-1973.

 

Heather Ripley, Founder/CEO

This post was written by on September 18, 2017


In construction, reputation is everything

Three ways public relations can help you manage your reputation

The construction industry is a tough playing field. One small dent in your company reputation could potentially cost jobs and business. Partnering with a construction public relations agency may be the best path to managing a reputation before something bad happens that can damage it.

Here are three ways a PR agency with great talent can help your construction business build and maintain a solid reputation:

  • Brand recognition – Another way of saying this is name recognition. It always helps to have a great logo and a name people will remember, but a public relations team can help get that name in front of the right people using a well thought out communications strategy. Positive messaging and proper placement of a company’s successes can motivate people to hire you. Let PR professionals help develop and implement a sound strategy.
  • Effective storytelling – A seasoned construction public relations agency should have outstanding writers. Those writers can tell the tale of your business in unique, creative and memorable ways. They are skilled at finding the nuggets hidden away in your company’s history or story and creating compelling stories around those gems. Don’t underestimate the value of effective storytelling where your reputation is concerned.
  • Impeccable online presence – In today’s internet age, online image is everything. A company’s website is the front door for most of your business. Even if someone first hears of your company on the six o-clock news, their first real contact will come when they Google your company’s name. That online presence may be what compels them to pick up the phone or send that first email asking for a quote on a job. Trust a good PR team to help you manage that online presence.

If you want your construction business to have and keep a great reputation, then a construction public relations agency with the talent and expertise to help is what you need.

If any of the above resonates with you and your business, we at Ripley PR would love to talk with you. Not only are we a construction public relations agency, we know we can help you maintain that sterling reputation.

John Cherry, Senior Brand Manager

This post was written by on September 12, 2017


Be prepared before disaster strikes

 

Hurricane Harvey highlights need for manufacturing PR we hope you won’t need

A local journalist reporting from Rockport, Texas in the wake of horrible Hurricane Harvey probably spoke for most of the town when he described the scene as “surreal.”

Shipyards and other manufacturing facilities were wiped out or seriously damaged. The high school was virtually destroyed. Its athletic facilities were decimated. Businesses and homes were blown and flooded to fragments. It was among the most destructive hurricanes to hit the Texas coastline in half a century. Residents and business owners in Rockport knew it could happen, but by and large this was a disaster that usually happened elsewhere. But it finally happened there. And such a disaster could happen to you, or your manufacturing company.

Are you ready? How are you going to communicate with your employees if your manufacturing facility is destroyed? Electricity and cell service might not be restored for days, weeks or even longer. How are you going to communicate with your customers or the media? How will you express your condolences to your devastated community?

Ripley PR, a manufacturing public relations agency, has some solutions, and we hope they are never needed. We regularly craft crisis communications plans for our manufacturing clients so companies know what to do when the chips are down. In essence, we can lead leaders through a crisis.

Here are a few ways we can help:

  • Social media. If your employees or customers can access the Internet, Ripley can communicate with them via a social media platform such as Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. We are on call for our clients 24 hours a day. We can let your staff and customers know when they can return to work or when you can resume shipments or manufacturing for your own clients.
  • Media outreach. The types of crises vary, of course, but we can coordinate ahead of time your response to a range of calamities. If you need to craft a special statement to disseminate to the media, we’ll do that for you.
  • Information gathering. We can prepare plans ahead of time for communication with local law enforcement or public-safety officials to get you information about the state of your manufacturing facility or its immediate environment. We have journalists on staff who are experienced with disaster coverage, its aftermath and its intricacies.

Rebuilding your business, and the safety, livelihoods and well-being of your employees should be your priorities following a disaster that affects your manufacturing process. We can handle media inquiries, issue statements on your behalf and help you communicate with your staff and the public. Because one day you may face a “surreal” situation of your own.

Thomas Fraser, Senior Content Specialist

This post was written by on September 8, 2017


What journalists want

what-journalists-want-digital-ageThe executives of any enterprise know what their customers want, but in order to reach more customers they also need to know what journalists want. That’s why they turn to public relations firms such as Ripley PR.

Public relations professionals know that journalists and customers need the same thing from companies – expertise.

Customers want companies to deliver products and services developed by the best in the industry; journalists want experts to deliver the knowledge and insight from industry leaders that lend credibility to their articles.

In its annual survey of more than 1,550 journalists and people who influence opinion, Cision, a leading media communication technology and analytical company, found that journalists continue to rely on public relations professionals to do their jobs.

In fact, with newsroom staffing levels and media resources shrinking, journalists are even more dependent on public relations firms. This is true of firms that represent B2B companies as well those that represent businesses directly serving consumers.

According to Cision’s 2017 State of the Media Report, journalists most value story leads they glean from news releases provided by public relations firms. They might end up writing about an industry rather than a particular company, but a steady stream of information keeps reporters nourished.

The second most valuable resource public relations firms provide journalists is a conduit to experts. Experts can add credibility to a reporter’s story and raise the visibility of their own companies.

The State of the Media report also tracks trends in the news industry, and this year’s notes that journalists are increasingly reliant on public relations firms for video. The migration of news consumers to digital platforms has increased demand for video exponentially, even on the websites of newspaper companies.

Mobile devices and social media have changed the way people receive – and interact with – the news. But regardless of platform, journalists always want to tell compelling stories. Public relations professionals play a vital role in bringing those stories to a broader audience.

Here at Ripley PR, we understand journalists – some of us have been reporters – and know how to give them the support they need to tell our clients’ stories. If you want to tell the story of your business, call us today.

Scott Barker

This post was written by on September 7, 2017


Get ahead of the Trend: Invest in Your B2B Company’s Story

Consumers want to connect with people and stories, B2B public relations can make that happen

Frustrated with digital ads? Well, according to recent research from Forrester, the advertising landscape is busy changing and now is a good time to rethink your marketing spend.

B2B Public RelationsForrester predicts the end of digital advertising and wrote:

It’s the end of advertising as we know it . . . at least for digital and display ads, which wasted roughly $7.4 billion in 2016 due to poor-quality ad placement. Of that ad spending, only 40% was actually seen by a real human. Meanwhile, a growing number of US online adults have installed ad blockers to avoid these types of interruptions.

So what did their findings indicate?

  • Consumers are weary of ads interrupting their digital experience. People don’t engage with digital ads and 39 percent of U.S. online adults have installed an ad blocker.
  • 50 percent of U.S. online adults avoid ads on websites
  • 47 percent actively avoid mobile in-app ads
  • 67 percent of consumers trust online reviews compared to only 47 percent that trust ads next to search results
  • Consumers want to connect with people and stories

Major advertisers have frozen spending and marketers are returning to the power of storytelling.

Enter B2B public relations.

PR professionals, like Ripley PR, can help your company manage your reputation and tell your company’s story so consumers will want to connect with you. This includes:

  • Reviews management
  • Case studies
  • Content creation
  • Social media
  • Whitepapers
  • Media relations and more.

Learn more about the power of storytelling with B2B public relations by contacting Ripley PR today.

Celeste Vlok, Senior Brand Manager

This post was written by on September 6, 2017


Breaking the Frame: Video and VR for Franchise Public Relations

There’s a revolution coming that will put potential customers and franchisees in the middle of the action when it comes to marketing your franchise business. Virtual reality and 360-degree videos and photos are opening up whole new possibilities for content marketing and franchise public relations.

What is VR?

VR is the computer-generated simulation of 3D images that can be interacted with through the use of special equipment such as headsets and hand-sensors.  With the commercial viability of the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive as well as cheaper smartphone-based systems, VR is beginning to work its way into the mainstream.

360-degree video

Meanwhile, social media platforms like Facebook are integrating 360-degree photos and video options that provide a VR-like experience for viewers without the requirement of special equipment.

Kara Alaimo, Ph.D., writing for Public Relations Tactics, evangelizes about the marketing potential of the new technology:

PR professionals are storytellers for our brands. Imagine taking viewers on a VR tour of your factory, creating an experience of what it’s like to drive your sports car down the autobahn, or luring tourists with clips of walking the streets of Old Delhi. If the goal of public relations is to engage and build relationships with our stakeholders, then bringing them into the worlds of our brands may be the ultimate way of achieving this.

The potential of VR

Imagine being able to record a marketing video from a technician’s eye view. Have products to show off? Put the viewer in the middle of the experience. They may sound like magic, but VR and 360-degree imaging technology are simply tools that are well within reach of your business.

Would you like to learn more about the ways in which VR and 360-degree video can play a role in marketing your franchise business?  Contact Ripley PR today. Our experienced team is not afraid of tackling the latest technologies to use in boosting your company. Let us help.

Joel Davis, Senior Content Specialist

This post was written by on September 4, 2017


Racing to the start: How public relations can keep your automotive tech company in first place

automotive public relations technology advantageThree PR tips to stay ahead of the communication curve

The amount of disruptive technology set to hit the automotive industry in the next 5-10 years is massive. From connected cars and autonomous vehicles to Heads-Up Displays (HUDs) and biometric access and control, automobiles are in for a massive boost of technology integration.

That integration also means the market will become inundated with a variety of manufacturers, distributors and suppliers all vying for attention. If you’re one of the pioneers in integrated automotive technology, you need to have the proper communications strategy in place to showcase how innovative your company is and to deal with the copycats that come along and try to take a piece of your pie. That’s where having a comprehensive automotive public relations strategy comes in.

Here are three tactics your public relations strategy should use to ensure you stay ahead of any competition that tries to overtake your market share:

1.    Announce your progress

From new technology to new partnerships, you want to make sure that every step your company takes towards growth is documented and communicated to the media and your audience. Even if you’re in the R&D stage, there are times when you can announce progress or breakthroughs that will have a significant impact on what you’ll be able to bring to the market.

2.    Showcase your expertise

Part of staying ahead of the curve is showcasing that you are in fact ahead of the curve. Expert interviews and speaking engagements are just a few of the ways you can showcase your expertise, and in turn, the expertise of your company. The trick is to find the right outlets and in-person speaking opportunities that engage decision makers who are looking for what you have to offer, instead of giving away trade secrets.

3.    Prove your purpose

Sometimes it’s not enough to simply tell your prospects what you can offer them. Depending on the prospect, you might need current clients, customers and business partners in your corner to help champion your brand. One of the best ways to do this is through testimonials. Testimonials can come in a variety of forms beyond just simply a quote or two from someone about how great you are. White papers and case studies are two long form options that can capture the value you bring to your business partners while showcasing your solutions with a unique story.

If your company is laying the groundwork for the future of automotive tech, give Ripley PR a call at 865.977.1973. We have the public relations experience to grow your business and keep you ahead of the pack.

JD Sizemore, Account Supervisor

This post was written by on August 31, 2017


How Plant-Based Public Relations Deals with Market Challenges

Healthy lifestyles and health consciousness has shifted from a broad trend to a defining lifestyle, making plant-based products see a steep rise in demand.

As health-related concerns continue to spark consumers’ interest in natural products, plant-based brands are starting to find themselves competing with other traditional and non-traditional brands in this space, making it harder to reach their target audience and drive business success.

In today’s industry, there are three main product-placement challenges that plant-based brands are facing:

Positioning with retailers 

The battle between traditional and plant-based products seems to grow every day in the food and beverage industry. After all, industries are competing for a common goal: shelf space and consumer dollars.

The solution? Developing and accurately promoting a product that retailers and consumers trust and understand and pushes consumer demand.

Relevance in the marketplace

Disruptive innovation is hardly viable unless your brand’s efforts are top-of-mind with the buying public. This task, however, is extremely challenging if you don’t fully understand (or, even worse, are not advertising) your product’s competitive advantage.

In order to win the competition for product placement, you have to ask yourself, what makes your brand better for both distributors and consumers?

Understand the competition

With vegetarian-based diets on the rise (studies indicate that veganism has grown 500% since 2014), the growth of plant-based products is proportional. In other words, using traditional channels to promote an innovative, animal-cruelty free product might not be enough when the competition is as strong as ever.

So, how can you find solutions to these three challenges and succeed among distributors and consumers?

Enter plant-based public relations.

A plant-based public relations firm specializes in helping companies build a solid reputation in the industry, performs market research and thoroughly analyzes the results to help businesses understand what retailers and consumers value most. Plant-based public relations can provide a comprehensive overview of your organization’s strengths and weaknesses, while helping you develop a strategy that’s just right for your brand.

Are you ready to work with an experienced agency that focuses on plant-based public relations? Contact Ripley PR at hripley@ripleypr.com and let us help you with product placement and shelf space.

 

Heather Ripley, Founder/CEO

This post was written by on August 28, 2017


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