Collins The Trend Tracker
by Mike Collins
April 21st, 2015

There’s No Shame in Self-Promotion

When a company’s preparing to attract a buyer, part of that process is to list all the special and unique things about the company. This includes successful new products, awards and high-profile projects completed. As we have these conversations with companies, there’s a very unfortunate element that’s usually missing from the discussion. At some point, when the list of accomplishments has gotten relatively long, one of the executives from the company will ruefully say, “These things sound so great, you’d think we’d have told someone about them.”

Sadly, many companies are self-conscious about general self-promotion and fail to make it a top priority or believe that such campaigns are too expensive.

So, what is the cost of a bare bones effort at self-promotion? How does FREE sound? Industry trade publications appreciate timely content and routinely-run press releases that discuss awards received, appearances on television home makeover shows, visits by government officials and similar events. There’s no charge for this valuable exposure. Once the article runs, it can be further promoted via LinkedIn and other forms of social media. We haven’t spent any money yet.

Companies that are able to invest in self-promotion can consider hiring an external marketing consultant to distribute press releases. Having a third-party handle promotion ensures that it won’t get lost in the press of other business. Companies could consider offering bounties like doughnuts or pizza parties for internal departments that identify meaningful accomplishments that result in press releases or other promotional activity. Make it fun and it gets done.

When your company is written up in a trade publication, buy reprints. Send them to current and prospective customers, builders, architects, contractors and referral sources. Frame a copy for the lobby. Advertising a new product in an industry buyer’s guide can also be particularly powerful. Companies that place such ads are viewed by individuals using the buyer’s guide as being very serious about getting the message about their new product out into the market. In any self-promotion campaign you conduct, it is critical to buy shelf space in the minds of potential customers with a specific message. The old approach of “we’re here for all of your door and window needs” is really a non-message. Replace it with a specific message like, “We introduced this product to respond to contractors that were calling for a product that was easier to install than existing alternatives. Our customers have had particular success using the product on multi-family retrofit projects.” That might be a sliver of all that you do, but who will that prospect think of on their next project of that type? Get out there and start self-promoting.

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