7 tips to create unique key messages for your business


Standing out from your competitors can be a challenge if you don’t have the right key messages for your business.

Creating your key messages is like writing your story for your business. They are the messages that you want your target audience to hear and remember.

They can be used broadly across your communication channels such as your website, in media releases, during media interviews, at networking functions and any time you need to describe your business.

Repetition is the key to public relations. The more times your target audience hears, reads or learns about your key messages, the more memorable your brand will be. This can benefit your brand as your message will have greater credibility and visibility. In turn, this can positively impact your reputation in today’s competitive media environment.

Here are seven useful tips to help make your key messages unique and memorable.

  1. Originality is the key

Make your key messages unique and specific to your business in order to differentiate your business from its competitors. This way they will stand out more with your target audience.

  1. Keep it short and sweet

Write your key messages as short sentences. Long winded and complicated messages are harder to remember. This will help your business and your customers to remember them as well as making them adaptable to any situation.

  1. Be concise

If you are creating key messages for your business you should aim to have around three or four key messages for each target audience. Concentrating on only a few messages will have a bigger impact and be more memorable.

  1. Consider your audience

If your business communicates with a number of different target audiences consider creating specific key messages for each target audience.

For instance, if your business targets both large and small businesses, you may want to think about having key messages for both segments as each has specific needs and may require a different approach.

  1. Focus on the benefits

Focus more on the benefits your business can offer your audience to make your key messages more appealing. Key messages should never be purely sales orientated. Think about how you would like people to see your business.

  1. Avoid jargon

Make your key messages simple and easy to understand by avoiding the use of industry related jargon. This will help your key messages to be understood by a wider range of people.

  1. Keep them up to date

It is important to review your key messages on a regular basis for example, once a year or when the business goes through a change. For instance, perhaps you’ve added a new service or are targeting a new customer base. Your key messages will need updating to reflect these new changes.

Key messages are the foundation of a strong PR and communication strategy. They will help to ensure your target audience views your business in a certain way and can help maximise your brand in the marketplace.

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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 great tips visit our website www.cpcommunications.com.au. 

3 tips to deal with social media overload


Are you feeling overwhelmed or emotionally drained from being on social media so much?

Chances are you are not alone.

Being overwhelmed on social media is a real contemporary issue in our technology-driven society.

According to Success.com, a recent study has highlighted there is a new anxiety condition derived from social media called FOMO, the fear of missing out.

FOMO is prompted by social media users who are away from or unable to check their social network accounts. In this leave of absence, users fear missing out on events, news and important status updates.

With a plethora of different channels and content produced everyday on social media, you need to put strategies around your social media use to help you maintain balance and not get burnt out.

Here are the top three tips:

  1. Time management is the key to success

It can be easy to fall in the black hole of social media. Before you know it you’ve forgotten what you were doing, and hours have passed you by. Social media can be very addictive and without boundaries around your time spent online, you’re not going to be making productive use of your time or energy.

Give yourself a time limit before you start engaging on your favourite social media platform. It may work well to set a time for 30 minutes so you don’t lose track of time. When the timer goes off, you log out of your accounts and return to your regular work.

Knowing you have a deadline also means you’ll be much more purposeful and effective with your time.

  1. Be selective of your content

Rather than randomly surf through social media, use targeted searches to find the people and content you’re interested in.

Twitter search is powerful for searching for keywords, hashtags or people you want to follow on Twitter. Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn all have the ability to search using keywords related to your field or industry and to search for people by name. By using the search functions in the social media platforms, you can be more strategic with your time on social media by going straight to the rich content that’s relevant to you.

Other social media monitoring tools you can use to search on social media include Social Mention, SmashFuse and Topsy. These tools also help you find influential people in your field to follow and engage with.

  1. Social media detox

It’s important to consider taking a break from social media on a regular basis, so you can take the time to renew, recharge and come back refreshed.

Social media anxiety is a real phenomenon that can take a toll on you personally and on your business. However, by using smart strategies and some forward planning, you can make social media work for you and your business.

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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 great tips visit our website www.cpcommunications.com.au. 

Why your business needs a credible spokesperson


A business cannot speak for itself which is why you need a spokesperson that is confident, well-spoken, presents well and intimately understands your business so they can clearly communicate your key messages to your target audience.

A spokesperson is the human face of the company and is essential to building profile and reputation as they allow your audience to build an emotion connection with your brand.

So no matter if it’s being interviewed by journalists, presenting at conferences and events or speaking to the board, a spokesperson needs to:

Know your target audience: Know the people you want to hear your messages and use appropriate language to communicate to them.

Be prepared: Think about all the questions you could be asked and develop an answer for them before the interview. Practice in front of a mirror so you can catch any unusual or awkward non-verbal behaviour.

Deliver the business’ key messages: Before addressing the media or the public think about the three key points you want to convey. This will help you get your messages across in a compelling way.

Speak with clarity: Be concise and don’t speak too fast. Always keep the listener in mind and make your speech is clear, concise and understandable.

Keep their composure: In a difficult situation a great spokesperson will keep their composure and not lose focus. Your business will be painted with a bad reputation if a spokesperson responds negatively to any disruption or question.

Understand the media: Have an understanding of a journalist’s role and know how you to communicate with them effectively. This will help you to get your message across in the media.

Relax: Stay relaxed so you look like you are in control of the situation and you will appear more confident and credible.

Don’t avoid any questions: If you don’t answer a question it looks like you have something to hide and a journalist will probe you for more information. Always be honest, direct, friendly and amiable so you portray your company in the best possible light.

A great spokesperson can make the difference between a positive reputation for your business and a bad one. A little preparation before your spokesperson deals with the media can make a big difference in the outcomes for your business.

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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 great tips visit our website www.cpcommunications.com.au.

7 tips for using Pinterest for business

Untitled-4There are more than 72 million users on Pinterest, proving it to be a very powerful social media tool for those businesses looking to connect with potential clients and customers and drive sales.

Showcasing your business’ latest products and services is made all the more easier on Pinterest, with its visual nature making it the perfect platform for this style of marketing.

To make things even easier for businesses, Pinterest has a handy scheduling feature as well as analytics to help you determine whether your efforts are successful.

Here are some tips to think about when using Pinterest to promote your business.

1. Create captivating content
Like on any social media platform, the more captivating your content is the more likely users will be inclined to engage with it.

Save some time by actively pinning photos and videos that you have already created. Any images that you have posted on your social media channels including your business’ blog are perfect to be turned into pins.

Remember that users typically engage more with pins that are:

  • Infographics
  • Checklists
  • Tutorials
  • Quotes
  • Videos (can pin directly from YouTube)

2. Make your content pin friendly
Translate any deals, sales or special offers into smart and easy to view graphics and pin them to your Pinterest account. This is an excellent way to boost their circulation and develop your company’s brand.

No matter what your content is, find an enticing image to accompany it. If your business is sitting on lots of data and statistics, translate this into charts and infographics to include on your Pinterest.

3. Brand your images
Although it can take extra time, it is important to include your company’s logo on images you pin to Pinterest. When users re-pin or share images, they are indirectly sharing your company’s brand.

Don’t get too excited and include a huge watermark over the image. A small logo in the corner is subtle yet effective.

4. Keep your content organised
Pinterest enables all users to create themed boards. Businesses need to organise content by themes, which makes it easier for other users to find and browse content.

Businesses can use this to their advantage when looking to entice potential customers. Create a discount or special offers board on your business’ Pinterest account and regularly pin special offers and coupons that your Pinterest audience can use.

Having a board of downloadable freebies is also a good idea. For example, offer any eBooks that your business has created for free to your Pinterest followers. This is also an excellent method to drive web traffic back to a designated site.

5. Promote your pins
It is important to always ensure you promote your pins on your businesses other social media channels. Increasing the visibility of pins by sharing them is an excellent way to ensure more people are seeing them.

To help generate more product sales with Pinterest, you need to first drive more website traffic so that people can get to see your product. Include social media share buttons on your business’ website in order for your followers to easily share and engage with your content by re-pinning your images.

6. Include a call to action
It is important to always include a call to action in your pins. This can be featured on the image itself, or in the text description. Tell your followers what you want them to do by using action statements, such as ‘click here’, ‘pin this’, ‘comment below’ or ‘download this’.

7.Engage your Pinterest community
Get your followers involved in your Pinterest by creating a guest pinner board and encourage them to share images and pin items that are related to your business. This will increase your user engagement, make your followers feel more personally invested in your brand as well as give you automatic feedback and insight into the interests and opinions of your audience.

Creating a board specifically to share stories and get feedback from customers is another great idea to represent how deeply your business wants to connect and service its clients.

It is important to think of Pinterest, like all social media channels, as a way to create a broader and richer relationship with current and potential clients. Try to be actively involved in a sincere way. This might include repining content that is relevant to your boards, answering users’ questions on your items and commenting on other users’ content.

 An increasing number of brands and businesses are successfully leveraging Pinterest by incorporating it into their online communication and marketing strategies. Take the time to plan out how best to use the platform for your business, and ensure you are pinning visually pleasing and engaging 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 great tips visit our website www.cpcommunications.com.au. 
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7 golden tips to avoid PR mistakes

FUTE tip 44Everyone is familiar with Murphy’s Law - “Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong”. It is common that mistakes are bound to occur in everyday life and situations.

However, in a PR or business environment, it is what you learn from those mistakes that are vital in helping you gain a competitive edge.

Using PR as a strategy for your business or company can be beneficial, as PR can optimise your brand for greater visibility, readership and credibility.

Here are our top 7 tips so you can avoid the common PR mistakes and perfect your business strategy.

Preparing is a must

Whether it’s for a media interview, sending out a media pitch or just a regular day in the office, your business needs to be prepared for any PR opportunities that may arise. This involves having an appropriate spokesperson that has had media training and is ready to conduct media interviews on short notice.

The sooner, the better

Don’t start PR activities too late. If you want media coverage for a particular event, project or campaign, you need to start your PR activities well in advance. Many print magazines start putting together their next issue three months before it is published. This means you will need to contact these journalists at least three months before your event or project.

Other factors can affect how fast you are able to gain media coverage for your event or project such as whether the journalist is available, how much space is available in the publication and whether the journalist is interested in your story. You may also need to leave some time to readjust your PR strategy if the current one is not producing the best results. A long-term approach to PR is then more effective.

Ensure the content is approved

Before sending any content, such as articles to a journalist, make sure it has been approved by the appropriate people. For example, if you work in a PR agency you will need to make sure your client approves any content before sending it out. If you are conducting PR activities for your business make sure your supervisor is happy with the content before sending it out.

If something is published that is inaccurate, it could damage the business’ reputation as well as damage your reputation with the journalist.

Avoid sending mass media pitches

Sending out a mass media release or media pitch to any and every journalist or publication is not a good PR tactic. A better tactic is to research the publications and key journalists who would be interested in your story. For example, find out what topics the journalist normally covers, the audience of the publication and whether they would be interested in your story. You can then send your media release to these key journalists because it is relevant to them. This will give you a better chance of gaining a media opportunity and you won’t annoy journalists with irrelevant media pitches.

Research, research, research!

Before contacting a journalist, make sure you do your research and find out as much information about them as possible. You could be at risk of damaging your relationship with a journalist if you call them with the wrong name, forget their publication name, don’t know when their publication is published or hassle them when they are on deadline.

Ignoring social media is a no-no

Social media is a fantastic channel that can help you directly communicate with your target audience and engage them in conversations. If you don’t have a presence on social media, you could be missing out on many opportunities to build your brand awareness, attract new customers to the business and create a valuable relationship with customers.

Create a PR strategy

A PR strategy will help you organise your PR activities and make strategic decisions on the best way to communicate. An effective PR strategy will help you to use the stories in your business to draw in your target audience as well as increase your profile and build brand awareness.

By using these tips, you can prevent yourself and your business from making these common PR mistakes. If you do make a mistake, take action. It is important that you do manage the issue, learn from it and ensure it won’t happen again.

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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 great tips visit our website www.cpcommunications.com.au. 

How to optimise social media engagement through visuals

FUTE tip 62

Social media channels are powerful tools that can be used to ignite your vision, share your content, build your reputation and gain more followers online.

There are many ways to increase your social media activity online.

One powerful way to achieve this is by posting more photos and visual content on your social media channels. This can help you strengthen your online activity as images are more engaging than text alone and will elicit more responses.

Social Media Examiner has reported that photos on Facebook get seven times more likes and ten times more shares than links.

Images are effective on social media because they are eye catching, convey your message quickly to your audience and are easy to share. This can encourage your followers to communicate with you or to share your content to disperse your message to a wider audience.

Social Media Examiner has provided a list of ways you can use images to optimise your social media engagement.

Add text to photos

Photos with a caption or text are more likely to be shared by others on social media. This is because the photo’s key message can be conveyed faster.


You can create a collage of photos to convey a single message. You can also display photos in a sequence to help you tell a story.

CP Collage Landscape

Ask your followers to contribute

A great way to engage your followers is to ask them to share photos with the business on a particular topic. For example, if your business has a particular food product you can ask your followers to share images of their favourite meal made from your product.

Cover photos

The cover photo on a social media profile can help a business to convey exactly who you are. It’s then important to make the most of this space by having a clear picture which describes your business. You can also change your cover photo periodically to keep your followers interested in your profile.

‘How to’ images

You can use photos to describe a step-by-step set of instructions and teach people how to do something. This will help your followers to understand your instructions.

Word images

Make text look more exciting and engaging by incorporating it into an image. This may be a quote written in colourful, interesting font with a different background or a combination of text and pictures. Be creative with how the words are displayed in the picture and come up with a new way of conveying a message.

FUTE tip 42

Describe the images

Make sure you add a descriptive caption or appropriate tag on your photos. This involves describing what is in the photo and adding your business name and website address. If someone shares your photo you want to make sure their followers know the photo came from you. This will help to disperse your message to a wider audience.

Photos from your business

Share photos from your business such as pictures of the office, your team, a brainstorm meeting, your team member speaking at a conference, sunsets from your office and more. This is a great way to provide followers with an insight into your business culture to allow them to connect with you on a personal level.


If you are thinking about using more photos on social media, it’s a great idea to gather a large number of stock images beforehand. This will make it easier to find and post the right photos whenever you want. You can find images on websites such as Shutterstock, which has over 20 million stock images to purchase.

Read the full article here.

How do you use visuals on social media? Tell us in the comments below.

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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 great tips visit our website www.cpcommunications.com.au. 

The best times to write a media release

FUTE tip 54

A media release is a written piece of communication distributed to specific journalists to announce something newsworthy. It is one of the most effective ways of providing information to media outlets and it is often the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about public relations.

A media release can help you to communicate your news to a number of key journalists at the same time and can also help you get media coverage in a variety of publications.

Before drafting a media release, take some time to think about the publications you will be sending it to.

Your overall goal for sending out a media release is to communicate your message directly to your target audience which means you will need to create a media list of appropriate publications. For example, a business that is in the health industry would most likely target health news and publications.

The release needs to present news that is new, exciting, interesting and/or relevant before a journalist will consider publishing it.

Here are some events and special occasions where a media release would be most appropriate.

The launch of a new product
Launching a new product, such as an eBook is current and exciting news that your target industry and publications will appreciate.

New staff appointment
Sending out a media release about a new arrival to your business is a great way to gain media exposure in target publications. Ensure you send out the media release quickly so the announcement is still current.

Commenting on current trends in your industry through a survey
Conducting a survey is an excellent way to get publicity and present your business as a valuable source of information and enhance your credibility. Choosing a theme for your survey that is topical and linking your business to it will help pique the interest of journalists. After getting the results, find the most interesting and newsworthy result from the survey and make this the main focus on the media release.

An award win
Sending out a media release when your business wins an award is an excellent way for your target audience to see you as an industry leader.

New business wins
Industry publications will often publish media releases about business’ winning new accounts and signing new contracts. For example, if your business goes for a competitive pitch to win a new client have a media release ready to send to your relevant publications.

Business milestones and achievements
When your business has an anniversary or another important milestone write a media release with this as the angle. This gives you a way to discuss your business’ achievements and performance during this time.

Journalists receive hundreds of media releases a day; making it important for you to try and help yours stand out. Think carefully about how to write the media release and always find the hook to help grab the journalist’s attention.

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Sydney Social Media Agency, CP Communications provides specialist social media strategies as well as traditional and online PR strategies that get amazing results. Contact us today. For more great tips visit our website www.cpcommunications.com.au or download our free Media Release Template http://bit.ly/mrtemplate

What you need to know before joining social media

social-media-strategyTwitter, Instagram, Facebook, Tumblr... There are hundreds of social media platforms these days, and more popping up every week. However, many have different audiences and different ways they interact with their users.

So, before you dive into social media there are a few things to consider.

You need to choose the platforms that suit the needs of your business and represent your brand effectively. Here are a few questions you should consider before you join a social media platform and form your content strategy.

Where is your target audience?
Before you join a social media platform stop and think about where your target audience is. What social media platforms are they using and which ones are they avoiding? You should think about how your target audience is using these sites and when. With this information you can create a targeted approach to social media by joining platforms that reach your target audience.

Which platform suits your business?
You don’t have to join all the social media platforms at once. Start by choosing the top two platforms that are right for your business. For example if you have a corporate business that is interested in increasing your professional network then LinkedIn is the perfect site.

Who will manage your social media accounts?
Social media can be very time consuming and overwhelming. You need to consider who will manage your social media accounts and who is able to devote enough time to each platform. You can designate a particular employee or a team of people to manage your accounts. Make sure to educate your staff on how to use social media effectively and what messages you want them to distribute.

How will you use social media?
You need to develop a strategy about how your business will use social media. This strategy should include what information you will post, how often it will be posted, how your brand will be represented and how you respond to positive and negative comments.

What are the security settings?
Make sure you are aware of the security settings on each social media platform to ensure that your privacy settings are up to date. Always read the terms and conditions of each site to ensure you are aware of its rules.

Are you prepared for a long relationship with social media?
Social media is not just a onetime thing. It takes a long time to build a following on social media and to position your business as a valuable member of an online community. Join well-established social media platforms such as LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook because they have the potential to continue for a long time.

By taking into consideration these six points you can start using social media with a clear goal and strategy in mind.

Download our FREE Guide to Social Media Success and learn how to get ahead of your competitors and build your business using social media.


What is a famil and how it can help you get amazing media coverage

Chairs and umbrella in tropical paradise sunsetEver wondered how a travel journalist has so much first-hand knowledge about every location you have ever wanted to visit? Chances are they have been on a familiarisation (or two).

A famil or familiarisation is a PR tool designed to give select journalists the opportunity to experience a region, venue, product or package. It is conducted with the intention that a journalist will then write a favourable story about their experience.

Typically famils are conducted by businesses in the tourism industry, to demonstrate the latest properties or offerings. This industry thrives on experiences, and journalists can help these businesses to meet or exceed client expectations about a region, venue or package by writing about their experiences.

However, you don’t have to be a hotel or tourist attraction to use this media tactic. If you manage a venue, such as an attraction or restaurant, think about how you can create an experience that you can invite a journalist to enjoy. Consider the interesting aspects of your venue you would like highlighted and work these into a fun and attractive prospect for a journalist (or even blogger).

When planning a famil consider the following:

Know your audience
Understanding your target audience is critical to the success of a famil. Research the journalists and bloggers who write about your industry or area of expertise prior to inviting them. By contacting the right journalist you are more likely to get them to attend your famil and write about their experience with your business.

Be the host with the most
A famil needs to be informative and engaging, and as the host your job is to do just that. If the host is passionate and enthusiastic when showcasing the business, it can make for a more engaging and memorable experience. It is also important for the hosts to be welcoming to the journalists as they are out of their comfort zone. They will appreciate the friendliness and consideration, and are more likely to remember you and your business once the famil is over.

Pack in the action
Keep in mind when planning to showcase your business, a full itinerary is critical. Journalists are there to experience and see everything you have to offer. Plan events that will provide variety and insight, try thinking outside the square by pinpointing key areas to highlight rather than showing everything.

For example, highlighting a new attraction at a venue and then conducting an activity that incorporates the attraction such as playing a game of beach volleyball to highlight the new activities available at a venue or showcasing the latest technology on offer and then creating an interactive game around this.

Follow up
Once the famil is over, stay in touch with the journalists that attended. It is a good way to gain feedback and keep the relationship alive. Continued engagement with attendees will keep you and your business front of mind, and could lead to media opportunities in the future.

The important thing to remember about famils is to only use one when you have something physical to showcase or promote. Ensure to plan ahead and provide ample opportunities to highlight what it is your business has to offer. This will hopefully create a positive and memorable experience for the journalist and could result in some positive media coverage.

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How to build an online profile that leads to new opportunities

What’s the first thing you do when you meet someone new? You search for them online. You may look at their LinkedIn profile, their company website, blog and maybe even their Facebook profile and Twitter account.

A quick online search of someone can tell you a lot of information and savvy business professionals and entrepreneurs know how to exploit this and use it to their advantage.

Your online profile, that is all the platforms that represent you and perhaps your business, has the power to influence potential new clients, business stakeholders as well as future employers.

So if you want to be seen in a certain light or position yourself as an industry expert, building a strong online profile is the best way to achieve this.

When building your online profile you should consider the following:

Personal branding

The key to creating an online profile that has the power to influence people is to develop and communicate a consistent personal brand across all your platforms. This unified brand is what will help you stand out.

Take some time to consider what it is you want to be known and respected for. Also think about the things that are unique and memorable about you. We are all unique and have our points of difference. Remember, people connect and buy emotionally, so there needs to be an emotional element.

The right online platforms

Deciding what type of platforms you will use to profile yourself is critical and will depend largely on your target audience, how they like to receive information and where they spend time online. With so many options to choose from, it’s also a good idea to initially focus on one or two platforms before expanding to others.

For many business professionals, LinkedIn offers the opportunity to profile your business self as well as connect and network with others. However, don’t just use LinkedIn as an online resume. Consider what your objectives are; are you trying to attract a certain type of new client? Or are you angling for a new career? This will impact how you use LinkedIn to really maximise its power.

Connect with online influencers

So you’ve done the hard of work of figuring out how you want to convey yourself and setting up your online channels, you may have even added your friends, family and colleagues as connections, but what next?

Think of social media channels like you would a networking function. You wouldn’t stand in the corner alone at a business event and expect people to come to you. The best networkers are the ones who initiate conversations, share information and make lasting connections.  The same theory applies online.

Seek out people in your industry with developed online profiles and large followings and connect with them. Share their content, comment on their posts and maybe even send them a message from time to time. The benefits of this are twofold. Not only do you build meaningful relationships with people that are well connected, your visibility also grows. It’s win-win.

Share value

By far the most important element of building an online profile is sharing. 100 per cent direct selling rarely works on social media. But what does work and can have a lasting and positive impact is building relationships. This involves sharing valuable information that the people you want to influence will benefit from. It’s a ‘them-first’ approach that also puts you in a position of being the expert.

For instance, if you want to be seen as an innovative app developer in the B2B space, share content on the latest trends in this area. This might involve writing a blog about your approach, insights and learnings that others might benefit from. Share this blog posts on your social media channels along with other interesting articles from your industry. This is not about putting tickets on yourself, but positioning yourself as a thought leader and expert.

An online profile that is authentic, consistent and highlights your area on expertise can be extremely powerful in establishing yourself as a recognised expert. By being conscious about what and how you share information online, you can build a profile that helps you attract new business opportunities and be seen as a leader in your field.

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How to use emotions to build brand loyalty with your target audience

puppyEmotion can be a powerful tool in business, if you know how to use it. Using emotion to connect with your audience is a great way to build a relationship that can lead to brand loyalty.

Brand loyalty is the result of an emotional decision to use a specific product or service again and again. According to www.circles.com, over 70 per cent of consumer (audience) loyalty and spending decisions are based on emotional factors.

These emotional decisions are derived from the consumer’s experience when interacting with a company. How the consumer (audience) feels is just as important as the product or service provided.

If the target audience has a positive experience with a company, they can become advocates or cheerleaders for your brand, and start to promote the product or service by word of mouth, it can lead to increased exposure and opportunities to create loyal followers.

Apple Inc.’s loyal brand following is the result of an emotional connection created with its audience. Even though issues with their products sometimes arise, Apple’s customers will continue to buy them due to the passion for the brand and the personal identification the consumer feels when using the product.

So how can you emotionally connect with your audience to create brand loyalty?

Before doing anything it is important to know who your target audience is. By understanding the target audience, the company can communicate in a way that speaks directly to them, connecting on an emotional level. Conduct demographic research to determine the target audience’s likes and dislikes, how they connect with the company and why. By doing this, the company can create a tailored approach to connecting with the target audience and creating brand loyalty.

Find out who it is you are communicating with, who is your target audience, what are their likes, dislikes and how do they connect with the company. By identifying the target audience, the company can establish the reasons why they engage with the brand and can create a specific approach to connecting with them.

Be genuine in your relationships
Determine what it is your company stands for, what the core values and beliefs are, and how that can be translated into emotional connections and a continued relationship with the target audience consumer. Don’t rely on your product or service to create brand loyalty, the company has to do the talking.

Virgin Airlines mantra is to ensure the customer experience is a priority, which has been achieved by integrating it into the company’s core values and beliefs. This empowers the employees to go above and beyond for their customers, creating a positive experience and listening to their needs, which translates to a continuing relationship with the company and can lead to brand loyalty.

Exceed expectations
When building trust with your target audience consumers it is important to show you truly care, ensuring you are meeting and hopefully exceeding their expectations every step of the way. Listen to what the target audience is saying, and try to assist in making their experience with the company as positive as possible.

Not all company, product or service issues are easily fixed, however it is the approach to the problem that the target audience will remember – how the company made them feel while dealing with the issue.

Connect through stories not products
Create stories that evoke the core values, beliefs and personality of the brand, this will help to connect with the target audience on an emotional level showing the human side of the company.

Proctor and Gamble (P&G) used the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics to build an emotional connection with their target audience by creating the #BecauseOfMom campaign. This campaign was designed around a basic emotional desire that the target audience could relate to, a mother’s role in forging a future champion simply by taking care of her child.

By understanding how the brand and its products makes the target audience feel, P&G were able to produce an ad that tapped into the basic instincts of a mum, and using this emotional factor they were able to create a connection with the audience.

Emotion is a basic human instinct and is a good tool for companies to use to attract a new audience and create brand loyalty. It is almost like a committed relationship, between company and target audience, as long as the company is delivering a positive experience for the target audience, brand loyalty should remain.

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How to survive a media interview

So you have distributed your media release or sent your pitch to a journalist and now you have had some interest from journalists – and now a couple of them have called you for an interview. What do you do?

The most important thing to remember in a media interview is that it is an opportunity for you to get your messages to your audience.  You are in control of the interview.

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The first step

It is important not to respond to any questions on the initial call. To maximise the opportunity, you first will need to organise your messages.

Ask the journalist what information they are looking for and the format of the interview (if it is over the phone, one-on-one, live or prerecorded).  All journalists work to a deadline, so find out what their deadline is and set a time to call them back. Make sure you call them at the agreed time.

You can’t ask to see the questions or the story in advance. Remember you cannot change your quotes or edit the story after the interview. More often than not, the journalist will be interviewing other people to ensure the story has a balanced view, so do not expect to be the only person interviewed or quoted.

Setting your agenda
Before you undertake the interview you will need to write out a game plan. The game plan covers key issues, possible questions about the key issues and the answers for each possible question. It is important to write these out - don’t do it from memory. If you are doing a phone interview, have the plan and media release in front you for easy reference.

Develop compelling messages

What are the critical messages that you want to communicate? Key messages are the core messages you want your audience to hear and remember. They create meaning, headline the issue and allow you to control the interview.

Your key messages are what you must say and get across in the interview – irrespective of what questions the journalist asks.

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.

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Understand the journalist’s role
The journalist’s role is not to try to catch you out, but to establish the facts and report on them objectively. If you focus on waiting for them to ask a tricky question, you will not be in control of the interview.

Journalists are looking for the truth. If you try to get a story by making claims that cannot be substantiated, it will not lead to a story. The article will not be published and they will certainly never ask you for an interview again.

Ensure any information such as statistics you provide the journalist can be substantiated.

Know the real audience and objective

Try to develop an understanding of the audience the journalist will be writing for so you can set your agenda accordingly. It is worth looking up the journalist’s publication on the internet or buying a copy. If you have time, read some articles they have written so you can understand their style.

Practice, practice, practice
After your preparation, you should review your game plan and do a practice interview. Close the door to your office, take the phone of the hook and spend 10 minutes going over your key messages and answering the questions from your game plan. Remember this is your opportunity to get your messages to your audience, so make full use of it.

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