Timing is Everything – Part II Events, Campaign Pitching ++
Timing is Everything…Part II
In part I of this blog series, we talked about a common faux pas where the wrong timing can have an instant negative impact – through social and traditional media. We continue the conversation in part II by expanding into other realms of the PR world where timing continues to play a crucial part. While there are many important elements required to develop a successful campaign for a client – three key areas always stay at the top of our list and coincidentally (😊) all have a connection to ‘good timing’. Organization. Interest. Relevance.
While having relevant and extensive experience is definitely something that we pride ourselves in, more often than not, it’s our ability to understand and keep up with the non-stop evolution of our current social climate that sets up apart. It has given us numerous opportunities to deliver exceptional results time and again for our clients, as there is a certain art that goes into planning the ‘right’ timing of pitches, media relations and events.
Here are our ‘2+ cents’ on things to keep in mind when planning out the strategy and execution of a clients’ project.
Organization aka Outreach
Staying organized in our industry isn’t a ‘good to have’ – it’s a ‘must have’. That needs to be applied in all sorts of ways, but it really is the difference between doing your job and taking the extra step. It doesn’t take much effort or time to reach out to a few guests for a potential event and check on conflicts or provide two date options for editor deskside visits. These are the small gestures and attention to detail that go a long way when building out long-lasting relationships and successfully executing campaigns. We’ve had many instances where reaching out to a few potential event guests has confirmed an existing out of town media trip, or three other events happening on the same night. Having multiple dates and enough foresight and consideration to send the note gave us enough time to plan accordingly and avoid a potential mishap.
Interest aka Research
Part of our job is to make sure that we have our pulse on all the ‘happenings’ in the city for multiple reasons. For one thing, it is possible (and has happened) that one amazing and authentic idea has already been done. Also, it can get extremely overwhelming for potential guests to get inundated with multiple events, projects, commitments all at the same time. While there are times it is unavoidable (hello holiday season), if we have enough foresight and information, we are then able to plan accordingly.
Looking at the calendar, reading the news daily (even if it’s brief), tracking holidays and important dates are all easy, yet often missed ways of staying on top of what’s happening in the world around you. We’ve all had that head scratching moment of watching a campaign/event unfold and though to ourselves ‘did they really not have access to the internet when picking the date’? Whether we like it or not, staying plugged in is the name of the game. It helps to be prepared, so that when the unexpected occurs (and it always does), it’s not a complete disaster. Optimal timing is one part luck and one part doing your due diligence.
Relevance aka Planning
This is a big one and plays a hand each and every time – for coming up with strategies, recommending programs and executing campaigns. Relevance is a key factor and should play a role when considering a particular venue, that will tie perfectly with the theme of the brand or product line. Selecting a date – is there anything else happening that can be tied to the program? When looking at different concepts for the Jamieson Cold Fighter campaign, we came up with the concept to tie the event with the opening of the new Grinch movie. We played on the movie’s theme and main character ‘The Grinch’, with the usual grumpy, ‘grinch-like’ persona that many of us embody when sick with a cold. This was a great way to bring some laughter to a not so funny topic and something the entire family could attend and enjoy together. Another example was tying L’Oreal Paris Women of Worth gala to International Women’s Day to reinforce the message that women are capable of anything. Or even when pitching to media for a specific product line – you wouldn’t pitch a cold and flu line in the middle of summer? Or a brand that designs swimwear in December.
I repeat – timing is everything. We use this phrase loosely, yet it’s deeply embedded in the way we strategize and execute campaigns on behalf of our clients. The little bit of extra time spent to consider this at the initial stage, will go a long way in preventing roadblocks as you move further in. Happy planning!
Cowan & Company, a public relations firm in Toronto, collaborates with lifestyle, beauty and health brands to create engaging PR programs through media relations, influencer marketing, special events, branded content, social philanthropy and marketing communications. By utilizing our expertise and working together with our clients as an extension of their teams, we maximize results to achieve a highly successful ROI