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The New Rules of B2B Public Relations

by Vanessa Horwell  |  
May 19, 2016

Executives are rarely enthused about allocating precious dollars into public relations when they create their annual marketing budgets.

C-level stakeholders (especially at B2Bs in tech-driven sectors) often perceive PR as an expensive cost center. They don't link PR to the business development and sales functions of the organization—and instead cling to the idea that good publicity is a byproduct of good business.

The reality is that tangible business results are (or should be) the outcome of quality PR efforts. Positive publicity is a boon to any business but not the end game of B2B PR.

Worthwhile B2B PR is all about earning results that change perceptions, shape opinions, drive brand preferences, and create new business opportunities. B2B PR should not focus only on impressions and other vanity metrics that our industry still uses.

Those positive results can only be earned from a PR strategy aligned and integrated with the entire business and in sync with the changing media landscape, the evolving expectations of B2B buyers and enterprises, and the new rules and best-practices in the industry.

Rule 1: A complex industry is a good thing

Entrenched in the complex standards, regulations, and market forces of "unsexy" sectors, B2B executives are highly attached to their industry acronyms and jargon.

So when communicating with new audiences, B2B marketers often dumb down what their businesses do and rely on trite messaging about their "cutting-edge" solutions or "leading-edge" technology.

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Vanessa Horwell is chief strategy officer at ThinkInk, a specialist agency serving companies across the advertising, airline, loyalty, mobile, payments, and travel sectors.

LinkedIn: Vanessa Horwell

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  • by MIguel Sánchez Fri May 20, 2016 via web

    Fully agree! I have used publicity instead advertising due to my marketing budget mainly but I am a PR believer and the ROI was very clear for me. Each 1 € that i invested I got 27 € in media value. What marketing action will have this ROI?.

    Of course, if you have money.....

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