Who Do You Want to Reach?
Plan Your Message for Your Target Audience
A critical part of a communications or marketing campaign is identifying the audience for the program. This is so critical, in fact, that during the planning process, primary audience is usually one of the very first concepts to be covered. Is the target audience existing or prospective clients? The media? Trade or consumer? What about investors and analysts?
After articulating objectives and identifying the audience, the plan will move on to which communication tactics will be employed, and today a press release can – and should – be deployed to reach target audiences. But audiences have different needs – a radio journalist is looking for different story elements than a luxury travel blogger, and an institutional shareholder has different questions than would a business reporter at a regional newspaper.
These use cases will offer ideas on constructing your press release and selecting the mix of PR Newswire offerings to help you reach your target audiences and achieve your communication goals.
Get Started by Answering these Questions about Your Audience
Identifying your audience is essential to planning, but you do need to dig into specifics as you detail your various tactics. Answering these questions will help you engage more effectively with the media, consumers, professionals, investors and analysts.
WHO IS THE ULTIMATE READER, VIEWER OR LISTENER FOR YOUR MESSAGE?
Identifying consumer, professional, investor, etc., will help you refine your message.
HOW AND WHEN ARE THEY CONSUMING INFORMATION?
Whether it’s a smartphone and the radio in the morning or tablet and TV at night, make sure your content is going to reach your audience when they’re interested in it.
WHAT CONTENT TYPES DO THEY USE OR ENGAGE WITH?
Make sure you’re supplying the text, photos, videos, infographics, etc., that your audience is looking for.
WHERE ARE THEY?
Even in the Internet era, physical location may be a factor in targeting your message.
WHAT LANGUAGE DO THEY CONSUME INFORMATION IN?
If your target is on Spanish-language websites, make sure your audience will find your message in its preferred language.
GENERATING MEDIA ATTENTION TO REACH YOUR “REAL” AUDIENCE
Just about every communicator will say they want media attention for their initiative or announcement, and it’s easy to understand why: earned media is rated more credible by consumers than branded content.* In other words, your target audience will be more receptive to your message if it has gotten the attention of influential journalists and bloggers.
A personal care company is rolling out a product extension designed for mothers with toddlers. The brand managers have designed a multichannel campaign that includes a contest revolving around user-generated content, and want to reach young moms across the US, including Hispanic families.
To promote the contest, the company’s content promotion strategy should include a mix of multimedia shared in multiple languages.
US NATIONAL DISTRIBUTION to reach major media outlets and websites across the country
MULTIMEDIA to share contest videos
INDUSTRY MICROLISTS to target writers covering consumer packaged goods
MULTICULTURAL OPTIONS to reach Spanish-speaking mothers
A global software company acquired a patient information management system, and has integrated it into its healthcare platform. The marketing team has a launch campaign that includes new proprietary research on patient information security.
To build its reputation in the healthcare software space, the company should highlight the research and plan targeted outreach.
US NATIONAL DISTRIBUTION to reach media outlets and sites across the country
MULTIMEDIA OPTIONS to offer highlights from the research in an infographic
INDUSTRY MICROLISTS to target journalists covering healthcare and technology
SOCIAL POST to reach followers of healthcare and tech news
PROFNET to connect the company’s experts with reporters actively developing a story
A publicly traded energy company is divesting its logistics and delivery division. The firm’s management believes this will streamline its operations, and lead to improved financial performance.
This is material information that needs to be disseminated fairly in multiple channels.
US NATIONAL DISTRIBUTION to meet disclosure requirements and get direct delivery to all the major financial media organizations
INDUSTRY MICROLISTS to target reporters covering energy and transportation
SOCIAL POST to connect in the energy and transportation space
CAMPAIGNS THAT CONNECT WITH CONSUMERS
Brands focusing on consumers know that while the target population numbers may be large, those same numbers mean that their competitors are continually developing campaigns and pursuing new channels to break through the “noise” and build a connection. Building out a content promotion plan, including press releases, can help your campaigns connect with consumers.
We don’t mean every consumer, everywhere – but we do mean a wider group, shaped by shared characteristics.
Use Case: Wireless service is a very competitive market, and the second largest provider wants to increase its market share. To do so, it has a come up with a promotion that combines giving with service: when a customer turns in a used cellphone, the wireless carrier will donate it to a charity and increase the contract one service level at no additional charge.
The company has recruited several national charities to participate in the campaign, and wants to announce the program to consumers across the country in English and Spanish.
US NATIONAL DISTRIBUTION to share the message across the country
INDUSTRY MICROLISTS to target bloggers and journalists covering telecommunications
MULTIMEDIA OPTIONS to share photos and videos highlighting the charitable organizations
MULTICULTURAL OPTIONS to reach Spanish-speaking consumers with the offer
Members of this group may make their living going to the office each day, but they also have a passionate interest they devote personal time to. This may take the form of blogging, sharing in social channels, discussion forums, online reviews, creating content – perhaps even extending to meeting up at real-world events.
Use Case: An athletic apparel maker is launching a new line of wearables for running, rock-climbing, skateboarding, snowboarding and biking. The company has recruited Niche Enthusiasts, avid non-professionals, for each sport to start wearing the devices and sharing results in their personal channels, as well as in a new community site the apparel maker has built.
To promote the wearables and drive more traffic to the site, the company should combine national, multimedia distribution with targeted media outreach.
US NATIONAL DISTRIBUTION to reach sports, health and lifestyle media and consumers
MULTIMEDIA OPTIONS to share photos and videos highlighting the wearables in action
COMPELLING CONTENT FOR B2B ADVOCATES & SEEKERS
Reaching a professional group can make it easier to narrow the focus of your message – but also means that your competitors are actively vying for attention within the exact same segment. Making sure your content stands out and has a compelling call-to-action for your target professionals is essential.
ENGAGED INDUSTRY ADVOCATES
In this group are the active industry participants: commenting in forums, sharing content in social media, publishing a blog, perhaps even speaking at industry events. Turning them into enthusiastic “activists” for your brand or initiative is a coup.
Use Case: A supplier for the airplane industry is releasing a new engine that is a significant design advance. This is material news, which will also cause a lot of buzz in the industry and in the metropolitan area where the new engine factory is located.
To introduce this innovation, the supplier should support targeted outreach to Engaged Industry Advocates with distribution and social media.
US NATIONAL DISTRIBUTION to reach the major regional media outlets, meet disclosure requirements and for direct delivery to all the major financial media organizations
MULTIMEDIA OPTIONS to share videos of the manufacturing line and photos of the new engine
SOCIALPOST to reach those following aviation, manufacturing and transportation
Most professionals will fall into this category. While they are not “publishers”, they are a very valuable audience as they are actively searching to learn about their sector, inform business decisions and develop additional professional skills.
Use Case: A technology consulting firm is building up its practice in data management. The firm has commissioned new research for CIOs, and is building out a multi-component, contentled marketing campaign. The campaign goal is to acquire new prospect names, particularly in the retail, financial services and healthcare sectors.
To introduce each piece of content to these B2B groups, the consultancy should have a multi-week distribution schedule.
US NATIONAL DISTRIBUTION to reach major media website and encourage online discoverability
MULTIMEDIA OPTIONS to provide videos and infographics with research findings
SOCIALPOST to join the conversation in retail, financial services and healthcare industries
COMMUNICATIONS THAT INSPIRE INVESTOR CONFIDENCE
Investors are very important audience for publicly traded companies, and shareholder communications teams keep two goals in sight: manage regulatory compliance and disclosure, and build shareholder confidence.
Use Case: A mid-cap company that builds HVAC equipment is investing in new, more energy-efficient product technology so it can make a major expansion into emerging markets. The firm’s executive team wants to reach professional investors and portfolio managers, particularly those looking for exposure to developing economies, so its investor communications plan should include international and industry targeting.
US NATIONAL DISTRIBUTION for discoverability, disclosure and delivery to financial information systems
MULTIMEDIA OPTIONS to share video tours of the technology in use
INTERNATIONAL DISTRIBUTION to share the message, in local language, in the target expansion markets
INDUSTRY MICROLISTS to reach writers covering technology manufacturing
HELP ANALYSTS OFFER UNIQUE INSIGHTS
Industry analysts have many information needs in common with journalists covering the same sector, but then they need to go further and offer unique insight and a point of view on a company or industry trend. Offering this differentiated viewpoint means that industry analysts need to do deeper diligence on trends, companies and financial data.
Use Case: A supplier to the automotive industry has an innovative new line of safety features that exceed federal standards yet are more cost effective than competitors’ offerings. The company’s corporate communications is targeting industry analysts for in-depth, technical coverage of these innovations.
The corporate communications team should augment the outreach plan with distribution to industry contacts and channels.
US NATIONAL DISTRIBUTION to reach major media outlets and websites
MULTIMEDIA OPTIONS to include videos showcasing the safety features
INDUSTRY MICROLISTS to reach auto and transportation journalists
SOCIALPOST to connect with those following auto and transportation industries
Close the Loop: Evaluate and Share Your Results
You identified your target audience, you executed a well-formulated plan and now it’s time to evaluate the results from your communications.
Our Visibility Reports offer a range of measurement points – views by media type, activity by region, engagement in social channels – so you have the insight you need to evaluate and share the outcomes of your efforts.
* “The Role of Content in the Consumer Decision Making Process,” sponsored by InPowered and conducted by Nielsen, http://www.inpwrd.com/nielsen