Should you hire a PR agency?

Should you hire a PR agency

A public relations campaign can help your business enormously and it doesn’t have to be expensive. You basically have two choices when it comes to a PR campaign: you can either do it yourself or hire a public relations agency. Assuming you can afford it, and assuming the agency is reputable, you can gain a lot by working with a PR agency.
An agency may be able to pinpoint those aspects of your business which would make it interesting to various publications, for instance. It can also allow you to focus on your day-to-day operations, and handle much of the work involved in running an efficient campaign.

Of course, there are disadvantages to using an agency, as well. First, it can cost quite a bit. You may be too small to justify the expense of using a PR agency.

Second, you will lose some control over your promotional efforts. Although the agency can do a great deal of work toward promoting your business, you do need to stay involved in the whole promotional process.

Even with these possible disadvantages, however, if you do not feel that you have the time and skill to organise a successful publicity campaign, it is better for you to seek competent, professional advice than to fumble with your public relations efforts.

Once you have decided to hire an agency to handle your public relations, you must determine which agency will provide the best service for your account.

Asking PR agencies the right questions
So you have decided you would like to use a PR agency for your business. Firstly look at the types of clients the agency represents. If the firm only handles very large accounts, you might need to look elsewhere. You also need to consider whether there will be a conflict of interest if the PR agency is handling a competitor of yours.

Find out how long various clients have used the agency. Do they have a fair number of clients with whom they have long relationships? Or do they have an unusually high rate of client turnover? If so, the clients may not have received the results they expected from the agency.

If an agency seems promising, talk to some of its current and former clients and ask them for their opinion of it. Did they receive the personal attention they wanted? Were they made to feel important to the agency? Did they feel that they always knew everything the agency was planning for their campaign? Did the costs justify the results?

After you’ve found two or three agencies which seem suitable, set up a meeting with an account executive at each agency. Be sure to ask for the executive who would service your account. You could speak to a smooth-talking, personable representative and end up working with an unenthusiastic, overworked executive who is more interested in serving some of his larger accounts than yours.

Have the account executive go over an actual recent account case-history with you. Have him or her explain the objective of that campaign, the strategy used to achieve that objective, and the results of the campaign.

Intelligent, inventive strategies will obtain the best results. Look at the various strategies used by each PR agency. Which approach do you prefer? Of course, different objectives call for different strategies; but you will probably find that you prefer one firm’s approach over the others.
Most importantly will you get clear reporting of activities undertaken? Do you have agreed on expectations of the results.

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Sydney Public Relations Agency, CP Communications provides specialist media, traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more PR tips see

Position yourself as an expert

Position yourself as an expert

When you are known as an expert in your field, the media take notice of your brand and you are likely to get more media coverage. So how can you become an expert?

PR tactics like public speaking, writing articles and blogging allow you to share your specialised knowledge and position you as an expert. Combining some of these activities can help create an effective strategy:

  • Write articles and pitch them to print and online publications. Start by looking at publications that your target audience read: observe their style, format and whether they publish contributed articles. Think about how to make your information useful and interesting, then pitch your article, explaining why it is relevant to their readers.
  • Speak at events. Speaking at networking events or conferences conveys your messages directly to your audience. Consider where your expertise lies and create a speaking topic around this which will be interesting to a live audience. Start with small gatherings and work your way up as you gain experience!
  • Write a blog. Blogs are another platform from which you can deliver your messages. Blogs can rank highly in search engine results and grow a wide readership quickly. You don’t have to blog every day, but keep it regular and post high quality content. When you are starting off, build up your readership by offering to write guest posts on better known blogs and link them back to your own.
  • Be interviewed by a journalist. Look for upcoming features about relevant topics, and pitch your expert knowledge as an interview opportunity.

If you have specialised knowledge and you aren’t using it to gain exposure for your brand, you are missing out on great PR opportunities. Share your knowledge online, at events and in print media and you, and your brand, will soon become well known.

How to use PR to build your reputation in business and on boards

A FUTE tip 2 - CopySome company directors and CEOs see PR as something that only benefits the company as whole. What many in the top job may not realise is that the PR opportunities available to them within their company can give their own reputation a boost and increase their chances of landing a position on a board or their next career move.

Improving your reputation with PR

Become a known expert:
When you use PR to position yourself as an expert in your field, it is your name and job title that is published for people in your industry or the general public to see. This helps build your credibility and in future circumstances when a journalist requires an expert in your field – it’s your name that comes to mind.

Improves your career prospects:
When you’re meeting a prospective board appointment or new employer, taking along a sample of media clippings that repeatedly mention your expertise will do wonders for your credibility and will stand you apart from the competition. Even better if the recruiter recognises your name from trade publications within the industry.

Land a position on a board:
While scoring a much sought after position on a board comes down to hard work and strong networks, one of the best ways to get recognised by board directors is by being seen in the media. You want to be known for having a voice and a good reputation – all of this works towards creating a profile of a person that boards want as a member.

How to make PR work for you:

Although it’s worthwhile knowing why PR is great for a CEO’s profile, there is no point having this knowledge if you don’t know how to make PR work for you.

Be available for opportunities:
It’s no secret that CEOS are incredibly busy but by making room for a 15 minute media interview, you could be providing yourself and your company with thousands of dollars worth of PR value. The more accessible you are to journalists, the more chance they’ll contact you when looking for an expert in your field. By simply saying yes a bit more, PR will begin to really work for you.

Get media training:
Taking a phone interview or answering a few questions in front of camera might seem incredibly daunting but with some decent media training you’ll be better prepared to handle whatever is thrown at you.

You might feel as though you know what you want to say but when it comes to crunch time, the words get stuck and you end up projecting an image that is less than flattering to yourself and your company.

Even if you feel pretty confident with your key messages and handling journalists, having a trained professional sit with you and help you organise your thoughts and create the right image is something that can’t be underestimated.

Look for regular business and entrepreneur focused columns/articles:
You don’t need to limit your area of expertise to the industry you work in, as a CEO you have a multitude of experience and skills that others want to hear about. Put yourself forward as an expert on management, as an entrepreneur or for any other related business stories or columns.

Accept your industry expertise and shout about it:
Sometimes it’s hard to swallow the title ‘expert’. It might feel as though everybody’s an expert these days, but the truth is, you have knowledge in your particular field that others don’t and you can capitalise on this by offering ‘expert comment and opinion’ in your industry.

The more you accept that you are an expert, the more everybody else will accept it too. Every story needs someone with expertise to add credibility to what the journalist is saying and the more that you use PR to put yourself forward as that expert, the more credible your own profile becomes.

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Sydney Public Relations Agency, CP Communications provides specialist media, traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more PR tips see

Use PR to get into the spotlight

Use PR to get into the spotlight

The most cost-effective and successful means of building your business and attracting customers is through public relations, and in particular getting media coverage.

The reason that PR works is that it provides third-person credibility not obtainable through paid advertising. In fact, it is said to have 10 times the impact of traditional, paid advertising, placing you above your competitors as the "top of mind" choice for customers, investors and business partners.

There are a number of ways to go about getting media coverage and seeking journalists to call you for comment on industry matters or issues relating to your business.

Media releases are a great way of distributing relevant and topical information to a group of targeted publications (think about which media outlets your target audience get their information from). The release must be newsworthy and cover the “who, what, where, why and when”.

Case studies provide an ideal platform to leverage business success and tell your story to the media through your customers. Many trade publications publish case studies and you can use them as testimonials when speaking to journalists.

Pitching is where you contact specific media outlets to offer them either an exclusive story or an opportunity that is more specific than a media release topic. You can pitch via email or phone, however before contact develop a clear outline of your story and ensure it is succinct and compelling.

Special features are published in most printed media and cover specific topics relevant to readership. They are an excellent avenue for reaching a specific audience. Contact the feature editor or the journalist in charge to see what angles, topics and issues they wish to cover and then develop a story, case study, or offer comment. Be proactive and contact features editors well in advance of publishing deadlines, as often they are pre-printed.

Write an article that positions you as an industry expert and offers topical, helpful information. Ensure it is written in an objective, informative and entertaining manner. It should never be a blatant advertisement or advertorial. Determine which publications your potential clients read, and approach editors focusing on what you can do for their readers. This is an effective way to generate future requests for comments from journalists as it positions you as an industry expert.

Develop compelling messages so you can get your story across. When a journalist asks you for comment, ensure you have developed clear key messages as they create meaning, headline the issue and allow you to control the interview. With your audience in mind and focused on your objectives, you should work out in advance of the interview what you must say on the topic concerned.

It can be difficult to figure out which topics journalists are writing on and how to approach them. Many media outlets publish lists of upcoming features on their websites, usually under the advertising section. This will give you a good idea about which topics the feature editor will require comments and stories on. The key is to offer newsworthy, compelling stories that place you firmly in the spotlight.

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Sydney Public Relations Agency, CP Communications provides specialist media, traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more PR tips see

Are you sharing your successes through case studies?

Are you sharing your successes through case studies

Case studies provide ideal opportunities to leverage business successes and can be used to reinforce your core messages through “story telling”. They provide audiences, including journalists, with a picture of the benefits your business provides its clients.

Market research consistently shows managers refer to the experiences of their peers when making purchase decisions. You most likely have many “stories” and it would be a shame if you didn’t tell your audiences about the successes you have.

Case studies follow the same format:
Identify the challenge a particular customer faced.
Describe the solution provided by the company.
Illustrate the measurable results gained from using the service.

Many publications require case studies to be written in a specific way, for example Marketing Magazine submissions require the following structure:

  • Background – what were the contexts of the case study?
  • Objective – what did the company hope to achieve?
  • Strategy – how did the company plan to achieve the objective?
  • Execution – how did the company actually implement the strategy?
  • Results – what were the results of the execution? Did they align with the objectives? What did the company learn from the whole experience?

When writing a case study we interview our client as well as their client so we can include quotes and get both sides of the story. The story should demonstrate how your company’s product or service was a key factor in solving your client’s problem. It doesn’t have to be solely about your product or service, but your influence must be vital to the success.

As with any written material used to build credibility it needs to be written well and not be overly promotional. See a sample case study that we have achieved heaps of media coverage, or read a simple written for the web case study.

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Sydney Public Relations Agency, CP Communications provides specialist media, traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more PR tips see

Why you need a PR strategy

Why you need a PR strategy

If you’re thinking about promoting your business or communicating with your customers then you need a PR strategy. It’s not worth while sending out messages to just any one without considering who you actually want to hear your messages. A PR strategy will help you target your communication to the right audience and the right publications at the right time.

Here are some reasons why you need a PR strategy.

Find your target audience: When you create a PR strategy think about the target audience who you want to receive your message. This is an important step to ensure your message will make the most impact. Without finding your target audience your message will not be received by the right people and your PR activities will not be very successful.

Find your key messages: One of the first steps to creating a PR strategy is to create your key messages. Key messages are the underlying points you want your target audience to hear and understand through your PR activities. For example a key message for a business may be: The [insert business] is a thought leader and expert in its field, always staying on top of industry trends to produce cutting edge programs.

Target the right journalists: Once you have determined your target audience and your key messages you can now think about what publications and journalists you need to contact. The best publications are the ones that your target audience reads. This will help you to achieve media coverage in the most appropriate publications.

Determine your goal: It’s important to always have a goal for your PR activities. By determining your goal you will have a clear purpose for your PR strategy and maximise the success of your PR activities. For example your goal may be to achieve a 25 percent increase in sales for product X in three months.

Create a time frame: By creating a goal you can then plan out the steps to achieving this goal. A PR strategy will help you to establish a time frame around these steps so you can achieve your goal in the set time frame.

Measure your success: If you’re conducting PR activities for your business your boss is bound to ask you, “how successful are these PR activities.” If you don’t have a PR strategy it will be harder to measure your success and answer this question. A strategy will help you to create measurable data and determine if you achieved your goal. For example if your goal was to increase sales by 25 per cent you need to constantly measure how many sales you received while implementing your strategy.

Better communication: When you have a PR strategy it will be easier to communicate your goal and activities. For example you can tell your client exactly what you will be doing for them and when.

A PR strategy enables you to consider every aspect of communicating a message in the best possible way. It will also help you to maximise the success of your PR efforts and gain the most appropriate media coverage.

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Sydney Public Relations Agency, CP Communications provides specialist media, traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more PR tips see

Tips for writing great online content

Tips for writing great online content

Writing online is very different to writing for print materials. People tend to scan information online and browse sites quickly before clicking though to another.

This means you need to adapt your writing to suit online whether you are writing for an online publication, your blog, your website or even social media. This will make it easier for people to quickly understand the essence of your content or maybe even capture their attention.

Here are some tips to help you write great online content.

Keep paragraphs short Short paragraphs make it easy for people to scan your content plus they are also easier to read on a monitor as opposed to large blocks of texts. Keep your writing concise, avoiding repetition and over explanation.

Use subheadings Subheadings are useful signposts to guide readers through your content and enabling easier scanning. Make sure the font is reader friendly, for instance Verdana, and avoid writing in all capitals. Bold all headings and subheadings to make them stand out.

Use dot points where necessary Dot points allow you to draw attention to the important facts without having to go into large amounts of detail.

Know your audience Understand your audience and write copy that will appeal to them. Don’t use jargon, overly descriptive words or too much colloquial language.

Avoid exclamation marks! If you are one of those people that put an exclamation mark after every sentence – stop! They make people edgy and they are annoying! Exclamation marks don’t make your sales pitch any more effective!

Check your spelling and grammar Check and re-check your content to make sure it is correct. If you are unsure whether there should be a comma, a colon or a semi colon it is a good idea to consult a grammar guide. Good grammar and spelling ensures professionalism and increases credibility.

Hyperlinks Hyperlinks are a great way to link to other online content, such as your website, blog, social media channels or maybe an interesting news article. They are also a useful way of providing additional information without having to go into depth on your webpage.

By following these simple tips you can make your website, blog, online article or social media content easy to read and appealing to your target audience. This means they will spend longer on these sites reading and engaging with your content.

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Sydney Public Relations Agency, CP Communications provides specialist media, traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more PR tips see

How to create the perfect pitch

How to create the perfect pitch

CP Communications went to a half day training course to learn about the perfect pitch. The team heard from four journalists who talked about how they prefer PR professionals to pitch stories to them and how they feel about creating relationships with PR professionals.

Here are some of the top tips the journalists suggested for creating the perfect pitch.

PR professionals should:

Do your research: You need to research the publication and the journalist that you are pitching to. When you contact a journalist demonstrate your knowledge of the publication or discuss some of the articles previously written by the journalist. Journalists will be more likely to use your pitch when it is specifically tailored to their publication.

Make is easy to set up interviews: You need to be able to arrange an interview between a journalist and your client quickly, so that the journalist can meet their strict deadlines. Journalists will be more likely to interview your clients in the future if you make it easy for them now.

Tell a journalist your good information straight away: Don’t hold on to your good information and wait for a feature opportunity to arise before you pitch it. Tell a journalist straight away and they will either use your information or keep it in mind for the future.

Return a journalist’s call within 30 minutes: Journalists are very busy and may be calling you to ask to interview one of your clients. If you don’t call them back straight away you may miss out on a media opportunity.

Become an expert on your client: A journalist may need to ask you basic questions about your client that they wouldn’t waste time asking in an interview. You need to be able to answer these basic questions quickly. For example they might ask how many employees does the company have or when was it founded?

Email your pitch: All four journalists said they prefer PR professionals to email them a pitch first then conduct a follow-up phone call two days later.

Create a relationship with a journalist: Journalists receive hundreds of emails a day and don’t have time to look at every email. If you have a relationship with a journalist then they are more likely to read your emails because they already know you.

Pitch with intention: Be very specific when you send a pitch. Journalists like it when you send them a pitch that details exactly what section of the publication your information would be perfect for.

Deliver on your pitch: If your client can no longer take part in an interview with a journalist you must find a replacement person. Never leave a journalist without someone to interview when they are close to their deadline.

Be friendly but not overly familiar: For example never call a journalist ‘honey’ or give them a nickname if you don’t have a great relationship with them.

Put the reader first: Put yourself in the reader’s shoes and communicate to them.

Here are some things that PR professionals should never do:

  • Never miss spell the name of a journalist or a publication.
  • Never send an email with the wrong name of the journalist.
  • Never call on a Monday morning. Journalists are usually very busy and may not have time to talk to you.
  • Never abuse a journalist if you receive bad or negative coverage. This will create a negative relationship with the journalist and they will be less likely to interview your clients in the future.
  • Never be rude to the editor co-ordinator. One day the co-ordinator may be the editor of a publication and they will remember how badly you treated them. If you create a bad impression they may not use your pitch in the future.

Some of the journalists suggested that they would be open to having a coffee with PR professionals to create a relationship with them. You just need to ask a journalist and be prepared with useful information for them.

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Sydney Public Relations Agency, CP Communications provides specialist media, traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more PR tips see

How to write great content for the internet

How to write great content for the internet

Studies have shown that most people only spend 10 – 20 seconds viewing individual websites, which is hardly any time at all. So how do you get people to spend more time on your website and actually read your content?

The answer is to write valuable content that will appeal to your target audience and is presented in a clear format. People will spend up to two minutes looking at a website with content that is useful to them.

The way that we read internet content is different to how we read print text. People read slower on the internet and tend to scan the page skimming over large chunks of content and focusing on subheadings and summaries. This means that you need to adapt your content for the internet to make it easier for people to read on a computer screen.

Here are some tips for writing great content for the internet:

  • Make it brief: People read text slower on a computer screen when compared with reading text in print. This means you need to cut down your print content by half if you want to display it on the internet. Make your internet content short and brief.
  • Break up the text: Make your content easy to read by breaking it up into small paragraphs of 40 – 70 words in length. Use subheadings, bullet points and empty space. This will make it easier for people to scan the article and receive your message quickly.
  • Use links: The great advantage of the internet is that it allows you to link your content to other websites. Use hyperlinks to draw your reader’s attention to other articles that support your research or main points. Make sure that hyperlinks open in a new window so that readers can remain on your page.
  • Use inclusive language: Write content that will engage your reader by using the word ‘you’ instead of impersonal words such as ‘users’ or ‘consumers’.
  • Create a catchy headline: Write a headline that will grab the reader’s attention and quickly convey the articles main point. Keep the headline to eight words or less to make it easier for people to read.
  • Great content: Write informative content that your target audience will be interested in. If you content is irrelevant or badly written then people will be less likely to read it.
  • Edit: Always edit your content! You should ask another person to read over your content because they will notice mistakes that you have missed.

By following these simple tips you can make your internet content easy to read and appealing to your target audience. This means that they will spend longer on your website, reading most of your content and engaging with it.

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Sydney Public Relations Agency, CP Communications provides specialist media, traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more PR tips see

What’s the deal with foursquare?

 What’s the deal with foursquare
Before you dismiss foursquare as just another social media application you couldn’t possibly get your head around, we thought we’d give you a run-down of what it’s all about so you can decide if it’s of any use to your business.
What the heck is foursquare?
Foursquare is a mobile application for your phone that essentially is a ‘social media game’ but can actually be used to help your marketing efforts, especially if you work in retail or hospitality (more on this later).
The idea is, whenever someone visits a location, like a particular shop or café, they ‘check-in’ to that location. The person, who ‘checks in’ to a certain location the most, becomes the ‘mayor’ of that place.Confused yet?
Why would people use foursquare?
When someone ‘checks in’ to a location they can see if any of their friends have been there before, or are nearby at that time. You can use foursquare to give suggestions like ‘If you’re at X café, try the chocolate milkshakes, they’re amazing.’ Or if you’ve checked into a shop you might receive a notification that a bar a street away has great, cheap pub meals.
It becomes a fun, competitive game to become the ‘mayor’ of the most places possible.  This is where businesses are jumping on board and offering incentives for people to come along to try and become the ‘mayor’ of their business.
A coffee shop may offer free coffee to the person who becomes ‘mayor’ of their shop so it encourages people to remember to ‘check in’.
Options for businesses
Not only can you encourage people to ‘check in’ to become the ‘mayor’ of your business but you may wish to offer deals to people to get them to ‘check in’ more regularly.
For example, the 5th time someone ‘checks’ in to your clothes’ shop they get a free scarf with their purchase, or the 3rd time they buy a sandwich from your takeaway shop they get a free drink.
To get things rolling, you may even offer ‘check in’ deals for people the first time they ‘check in’ to your business on foursquare. There are also wildcard specials that your staff need to verify before the user can claim their prize.
You can tailor these offers and start using foursquare to drive customers to your business and foster customer loyalty.
Good tips
Foursquare is a great portal for customer feedback and word of mouth, as more people start using foursquare, more and more people will be checking to see if friends have visited your business previously and what they had to say about it. It’s a good incentive for making sure your customer service is up to scratch.
We also recommend having physical signage in your store to encourage people to remember to ‘check in’.
Before jumping in and using foursquare, as with any marketing strategy, think about your objectives and what you want to achieve by being active on this social media. There is no point creating ad-hoc offers for your ‘mayor’ if you don’t know why you’re doing it.
The early days
It’s still early days in terms of where Australians are at with this social media application and there are bound to be updates and improvements over the next few months where we will see new opportunities for businesses outside of the retail/hospitality sectors.
So keep your eyes peeled for new information and as with all social media, the best way to understand it is to set up a personal account and learn as you go. Have fun!

An easy guide to Twitter

An easy guide to Twitter

Twitter has taken the social media world by storm and if you haven’t considered it as an opportunity to build business yet, you may be missing out.

Twitter is a great way to establish two-way real-time communication with potential and current clients, industry affiliates and professionals from external fields and industries whose ideas and advice, in the form of tweets, could lend to your business’ development.

Twitter can be used as a platform for research as it allows you to see what the Twitter community is interested in via their tweets. This information can be used to form good relationships with Twitter community members.

Once you have good Twitter relationships you then have the means to potentially communicate to a much larger audience than you would normally have access to.

Choosing your Twitter name
The first step to creating your Twitter account is choosing your Twitter name which, in Twitter language, is referred to as your Twitter handle.

As with most social media platforms it is important to be transparent in order to gain trust.  Your Twitter handle should communicate something about your Twitter identity.

If your Twitter account is for personal use, your Twitter handle could be your own name or initials. If you will be tweeting about your industry and business activities your handle could be your company name.

If you are trying to establish an online community your handle could be a name depicting the community. For instance if you solely wanted to build an online food community you could create the Twitter handle ‘I_luv_food’ and tweet reviews on restaurants, recipes and food blogs.

Creating your account
To create your Twitter account go to and enter your details. This page will inform you what Twitter handles have already been taken and what handles are still available.

Once your Twitter handle is approved click ‘sign in’. Twitter will then guide you through the next steps which include posting your first tweet (a 140 character sentence), finding friends, and using Twitter on your mobile.

How to find Twitter friends aka followers
To start off use email addresses to search for people on Twitter you wish to make contact with and click to follow them. Once you are following someone on Twitter that account’s tweets will appear on your home page.

Another way to find Twitter friends is to follow the followers of the people you are interested in. Some people will follow you back once you follow them, although not everyone!

To geographically choose who you follow use the free application Twellow at Here, you can also find people categories such as PR, accountants or gifts.

What to tweet
Once your Twitter handle is approved start your tweeting. If you have engaged Twitter for personal reasons, tweet whatever you want. Tweet about your feelings, your views on current affairs, daily activities, upcoming events- the world is your oyster.

If you have are using Twitter for business purposes you should have a Twitter strategy that aims to achieve specific objectives. Decide on what you’re going to tweet about. Ask the question: What are my target audience interested in? Do not just market your product on Twitter because the whole aim of Twitter is to establish two way relationships.

We tweet about our clients, upcoming events we’re excited about, our blog and about articles that relate to Public Relations.

Our Twitter strategy is to teach our followers more about the field of public relations, to communicate who we are and to build our credibility by keeping our followers informed about what successes we achieve for our clients. We also use it as another mechanism to distribute our clients’ media releases.

Decide on how often you are going to tweet. We try to tweet six times daily on our CP Communications Twitter account, @CPCPR.

Passing on other people’s tweets, re-tweeting
If someone you are following says something in their tweet that you agree with or like, you can promote their tweet to all your followers re-tweeting it.

This means that the tweet will be seen by the tweeter’s followers, your followers and the followers of anyone else who re-tweets it. This is a great way of connecting to new people and building two way communications.

Twitter is an incredible way of connecting with people, finding new suppliers, building your profile and even getting new clients. Really the only way of understanding Twitter is to do it. So what are you waiting for? Start tweeting today!

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Sydney Public Relations Agency, CP Communications provides specialist media, traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more PR tips see

Is it time you Facebooked your business?

Is it time you Facebooked your businessIf you thought Facebook was just for keeping contact with friends and family, think again. It can be a great way of building an online community, or simply reaching another audience online.

With a Facebook Page you create a public profile that helps you share your business and products with Facebook users. You ask people to become a ‘fan’ and you can engage with them by posting videos, photos, company news, promotions and discounts and by starting discussion groups.

Also, you can make your page viewable by everyone, whether they are members of Facebook or not.

Setting up your page
The first step when setting up your page, isn’t actually setting up your page. It’s thinking about the name of your page.  The obvious is your company name, however you can create a page that is related to your business.

For example we have two pages – Public Relations Sydney and CP Communications. The first relates to my personal blog, which I plan on creating a public relations community around, and the other is about our business.

You can also think outside the square. For example if you own a bottle shop rather than “The Corner Store Bottle Shop” you might think about calling it “It’s beer o’clock”.

Actually setting up your page
Go to and you need to choose one of three categories for your business: Local Business (and the industry); Brand, Product, or Organisation; and Public band, Artist or other Public Figure.

For the ones we have set up, we have chosen ‘Brand, Product, or Organisation’. Then you choose what type of organisation.  Then you type in the name of your name, hit ‘Create page’ and you are done!

Then upload your business logo, provide information about your business, contact information, hour of operation (if you have a retail or local office), and a general description that describes your business.

As you add more details about your business you can view the changes live on the page you are creating. This is all you need to publish a basic Business Page on Facebook.

Adding content
The easiest way of populating your page is RSS feeding your blog into the page. Go to “Edit Page”, “Notes”, and “Import setting” and add your blog url. This then means every time you post an article on your blog, it is automatically feed into your Facebook page. I have also read that you can use an external RSS feed application, but haven’t investigated this.

I have also fed my personal Twitter into Public Relations Sydney Page, and our corporate Twitter in the CP Communications page. You need to use an external application to do this. I have used Involver.

Getting fans
Once you’ve become a “fan” of your business, your friends on Facebook (some of which are likely customers) will see a message in their home page. When your Facebook friends become “fans” of your business then their friends will see a message, and so it goes…

You can also send a message to all of your friends asking them to become friends. One of our clients posted a message on their intranet letting all staff know that the company had a Facebook page so they could choose to become fans.

I also suggest you add the page link to your website, email signature, blog, business card – as many places as possible!

Remember when you get 25 fans you can claim the name of your page. This means you can point people to a direct url ie To do this, go to

To see how your fans are interacting with your page, and to get some demographics click on “Insights” within “Edit Page”. You may like to use this information to develop targeted competitions.

What makes a good page?
A successful Facebook page needs to be engaging, updated and rewarding.

While I was writing this article I read on Twitter @JourneyJottings tweeting about a giveaway on her Facebook page. She was engaging (and rewarding) her fans by running a 10 day giveaway where each day her fans had the chance of winning an Australia Map Journal. She was publicising it on twitter (and I would assume elsewhere) and getting more fans.

Another good page is The Sydney Writers Centre. They use video as well as words to share information as well podcast interviews with leading authors. They are creating a community around writing, and aspiring writers.

Dell has done a great job with their social media resource for small businesses. Understanding that small business owners buy computers, by offering them this resource, small business owners interested in social media keep Dell top of mind.

Sydney Public Relations Agency, CP Communications provides specialist media, traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more PR tips see