Gini Dietrich

Bootstrapping Your PR

By: Gini Dietrich | March 24, 2011 | 
84

It’s Facebook question of the week time (clap, clap, clap)!

This week’s question comes from Danny Brown, the co-founder at Bonsai Interactive, founder of 12for12K, and all-around good guy (most days).

He asks:

What are your top three tools if you’re a small business and want to bootstrap your PR?

I give you two tools in the video, but leave the third to you.

If you can’t see the video in your RSS feed and you’re DYING to know which tools I recommend, click here and it’ll magically appear.

And don’t forget to head over to our Facebook wall and leave a question there. I think I only have one more to answer before I’m through the current list!

About Gini Dietrich


Gini Dietrich is the founder and CEO of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. She is the author of Spin Sucks, co-author of Marketing in the Round, and co-host of Inside PR. She also is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and is the founder of Spin Sucks Pro.

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84 Comments on "Bootstrapping Your PR"

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JulieMarketing
JulieMarketing
5 years 1 month ago

Hi Gini, I love your videos! Constantly inspire me and educate me. I do have multiple Google alerts set up and it is interesting to see what I find. Occasionally, I get surprised and then find that I want to follow up with something. Never been negative (yet) but I do think it is good to have a handle on what is happening out there in cyberspace.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@JulieMarketing That’s what I like to hear, Julie! It’s SHOCKING to me still how no one uses them. They’re such a great tool and they’re FREE!

KenMueller
KenMueller
5 years 1 month ago
Good stuff.. I’ve got a third tool I’ve used, but rather infrequently, that i’d love your opinion on. I’ve used PitchEngine which has both free and premium versions, to craft social media releases. I’ve only used the free version, and have had varying levels of success. Just curious if you’ve tried it, what you think of it, and are there other tools out there like it that you would recommend? I also LOVE Google alerts and can’t believe more people don’t use them. Oh, and this is where I go offtopic and say: you look particularly nice in that video!… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@KenMueller We use PitchEngine for some of our clients and, I agree, the results vary. The thing I don’t particularly like about it is it doesn’t give you any stats. It tells you how many people view the release, but not how many of those are uniques, who they are, or what they do with it.

And…thanks! I didn’t dry my hair today so it’s funny you say that! I’ll put in an order for a sock monkey with my mom. She gave me that for Christmas.

KenMueller
KenMueller
5 years 1 month ago

@ginidietrich yes, those stats would be incredibly helpful. And while you look nice, I won’t point out the awkward moment at about 1:01, which, if I were cruel, I would use in some sort of video mashup, remix. Oh wait, I just DID point it out…

Shonali
5 years 1 month ago
First, I LOL’d big time when you asked JB to speak. We’ve trained Suzy Q (our Corgi-mix) to do so, and she does it perfectly. Except when she mixes up “please” (sit up and beg with front paws together as if she’s praying) and “speak” and then there’s a lot of noise in the house. Lola (basset) has trained US, because she will only really “speak” if there’s food in the offing. I particularly liked your response campaign tip. Taking that further, how’d this be for #3: the business’ own blog. Just as commenting on other blogs, especially those of… Read more »
johnfalchetto
5 years 1 month ago
First off, what did you do to JB? The last time I heard and saw him was during the intro video for lisagerber . I know that project JB is top secret and all but can you reassure me and show me he is well treated and in fine spirits? Gini, love how you say don’t delegate the monitoring of your name and the firm name. I think someone could write a book about how the bad news never makes it up to the C-suite and the disastrous consequences of living in utopia. I think my third tool (which isn’t… Read more »
EricaAllison
5 years 1 month ago
I agree with @Shonali on asking JB to speak 😉 …and on the blog approach. I know for my business and those that I’m working with, those that have that additional presence online certainly gain more traction in the public and in their media relations. One other tool that I recommend to folks is to become a guest columnist in the paper or publication of their choice (blogs included, but mostly print here). It needs to be a media opp that reaches their target audience and a schedule that they can commit to, but more times than not, even a… Read more »
BestRoofer
BestRoofer
5 years 1 month ago

Thanks Gini. I like the sock monkey too. I think that Linked in is a great tool for small business people whether they are B to B or straight to the consumer. Also, I have gotten commercial and residential leads from Facebook and Twitter. Like anything else, it’s all about creating relationships. Like we have, for which I am thankful.

a_greenwood
a_greenwood
5 years 1 month ago

Nicely said.

jennimacdonald
jennimacdonald
5 years 1 month ago

Gini thanks for the post. The Response Campaign is something I agree with and need to constantly remember.

On another note…I just started blogging and I’ve only done video blogs so far. I’ve been told that I need to remember to smile, so I always think of your smiling face on your video blogs when I’m doing mine. Thanks for the inspiration! : )

Marcus_Sheridan
5 years 1 month ago

Hey Gini, great advice and great little vid here. Google alerts, like you said, is easily one of the most underutilized PR tools out there. It helps me so much not to miss the ‘mentions’ of myself or my company (or competitors) that I may have missed and fell through the cracks.

Thanks for all you do.

Marcus

DannyBrown
5 years 1 month ago

Hi miss,

Thanks a lot for answering my question – see, you can be nice too! 😉

Agree on the GA option – such an immense tool and sooo underused (although some of the results can be hit and miss).

Would you suggest someone using a college or University student that’s taking comms or PR as their study to come in on internship and help small businesses understand the mechanics, or is that setting up for failure?

Cheers, miss! :)

Jon Stow
5 years 1 month ago

Thanks, Gini. Good short video and great points and monkey. I use Facebook, Twitter with a business which is both B2B and B2C and I gained B2B income through Twitter, so while I agree with you, no rule ia absolute. I also agree that Google Alerts is essential to know what is being said about us as well as how far we have reached.

Yes, we need to comment on other bloggers’ sights, and here I am. :-) However, being busy like everyone else, i wouldn’t subscribe unless I knew you always delivered.

cadelacruz
5 years 1 month ago

I’m a new follower, but I wanted to add that it was still important to continue relationships on in person and online. I work for a non-profit with very limited funds, so having close relationships with individuals in other fields is EXTREMELY important. What’s worked out for us is being able to get things started on a grass roots level.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@cadelacruz What?! You want me to keep building relationships?? Sigh…so demanding. :) Very, very good insight. I always say social does not replace the need to look at each other’s eyeballs.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@Jon Stow Hi Jon! Fun seeing you here!! Totally agree that you don’t subscribe to a blog unless there is value. Which is why using Google alerts (I also use SmartBrief) is so important. You can find stories within your industry, that way, to comment on…especially if you have a differing opinion.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@DannyBrown Are you pushing my buttons on purpose?! I think if you don’t have the sophistication to understand communication then hiring a college student to do some of the back-end work will work. But I would not recommend having the college student become the face of your company. That’s the work the small business owner needs to do.

johnfalchetto
5 years 1 month ago

@DannyBrown Brilliant idea, should have thought about this sooner. Perhaps making them community manager for said small business?

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@johnfalchetto @DannyBrown NO, JOHN, NO!!! A student doesn’t have the business experience, yet, to know how to handle the real-time world in which we live. I do NOT recommend it. At all. (Not that I have an opinion on it).

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@Marcus_Sheridan It seriously blows my mind when I ask who is using alerts and one or two people in the entire audience raises their hand.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@jennimacdonald I think it’s silly that you don’t have the confidence to write blog posts (but I do love your videos). You write really well…you just need to do a few to get comfortable with it. I have an idea! I’m going to email you something to use in your videos.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@a_greenwood Man of many words.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@BestRoofer Shall I have my mom make you a sock monkey, too!? I’d love you to expand on using LinkedIn. I don’t like it for anything but finding candidates and checking references.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@KenMueller You mean when I scratched my nose?! It itched!

KenMueller
KenMueller
5 years 1 month ago

@ginidietrich scratched your nose and then your eyes kinda crossed and rolled up into your head. I was scared for a second there! But…it was very human of you…

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago
@Shonali I only asked if he wanted to say something because he walked in and put his head on my lap at that precise moment. But I guess he had nothing to say (because I didn’t have a treat in my hand). Darn dogs. You know I love blogging as a tool for thought leadership, sales, building awareness, and all of the other reasons it helps. But it takes A LOT of time so we don’t recommend it for just anyone. It takes a special kind of person to be able to pull off a blog and an even more… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@KenMueller Sigh…my allergies are starting to bother me. Leave me alone!

KenMueller
KenMueller
5 years 1 month ago

@ginidietrich and you think telling me to leave you alone will make me leave you alone? you forget i’m like a 12-year old. Tell me not to pick at a scab and i’ll pick at it twice as much!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@johnfalchetto JB is fine and well. I’ll see if he’ll make an appearance next week for you.

I’ve done so many talks with CEO groups and heard them say, “I’ll just have so and so do this.” So now I make the recommendation and say, “DO NOT DELEGATE THIS!” Oy vey.

And YES to your patience. This is a marathon, NOT a sprint!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@KenMueller Fine. You win.

KenMueller
KenMueller
5 years 1 month ago

@ginidietrich wow. that was easy. too easy…now i feel the need to sleep with one eye open

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@KenMueller You’re smarter than you look!

KenMueller
KenMueller
5 years 1 month ago

@ginidietrich Thanks! hey……wait….er……

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago
@EricaAllison I go back and forth on the guest column/Op-Ed idea. I used to think they worked really well, but now I realize they’re not much more than an ego stroke and a reason for sales people to find you. I write for our business journal. Every Friday. And the entire city reads it (I know this because people tell me all the time). But it’s brought us zero business. It has led to my being asked to serve on boards and has gotten me a couple of equity positions on boards, but it’s done nothing for the growth of… Read more »
KenMueller
KenMueller
5 years 1 month ago

@ginidietrich so…now we’re getting back into that happy vs. dumb conversation again…

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@KenMueller Oh shoot. Wrong blog post. We’ll have to go back to yesterday.

DannyBrown
5 years 1 month ago
@ginidietrich @johnfalchetto Not for the strategy, agree, and company owner is far better as face of company. But say a small business only has $1,000 (or less) for their whole annual spend on promotion and relations. Having someone who’s comfortable in the space anyhoo (digital natives) and is getting great business advice through their course could offer a great and low-cost alternative to a full-on community manager. It’s more than likely that a smaller business (up to 5 employees) won’t have a huge amount of negative feedback to take care of, so someone that understands the space, its nuances (because… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@DannyBrown @johnfalchetto Boy…I just don’t agree with that at all. Sure they’re digital natives, but they’ve never had the experience of transferring their personal online activities to business. I feel the same way about letting an intern or newly graduated professional pitch the media or meet with clients. Ain’t gonna happen.

joey_strawn
5 years 1 month ago

Google Alerts, yay! I’m a HUGE fan and use them every day. I’m actually using them for the rewards program that you’re fighting so desperately to win (Leader board coming soon, BTW). I have all the alerts set up to flow into my Google Reader in real-time (except for some) so I can always have a flow of news and info. Although they aren’t perfect GA are perfect for someone doing it all themselves. Great question @DannyBrown and great answer, Gini!

DannyBrown
5 years 1 month ago

@ginidietrich @johnfalchetto I think it depends, Gini – it’s not a clear-cut blanket position across all industries and business sizes. Additionally, there are a lot of smart young people out there that have a far better business acumen than many business owners that have 20 years experience.

Would I recommend handling a complete account over to a junior or intern? No. Would I include them heavily and give them the responsibility of online client work if I feel they’re capable of it? Definitely.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@joey_strawn This makes my head hurt!

EricaAllison
5 years 1 month ago
@ginidietrich I totally understand your perspective on the column/Op-Ed idea, but for some of my clients who are either one person shops just getting their name out there or non-profits whose message is completely lost in the jargon of the media (mental health issues, for example), I do think it is effective in building their brand or educating the community. For the small biz owner/solo shop, if they get asked to serve on a board/committee of influence with movers and shakers who can recommend them or their biz, that’s a -ok with me. For the nonprofit who has educated the… Read more »
JuliaStewartPR
JuliaStewartPR
5 years 1 month ago

Hi Gini — Please pan your bookcase for us one day, I’m curious what all you’ve got up there. Google Alerts gets my top vote too, who needs to pay for a clipping service anymore. And the ROI it delivers for small businesses is tremendous. As for my #3, I’m still on the hunt for a good listening station. We’ll have to get your sock monkey together with my flying monkey sometime soon!

johnfalchetto
5 years 1 month ago

@ginidietrich I tend to agree with Mr Brown today. I think some youngsters understand social media a lot better than older corporate community managers. If we look at the recent SM fails they weren’t because of an intern (Chrysler, Red Cross, Air France)

You wrote about your experience as an AE recently and I think everyone should be given a chance. Obviously within reason.

joey_strawn
5 years 1 month ago

@ginidietrich haha, nonsense. You gotta keep track of what people are saying. We’re living in the NOW Revolution. : )

jennimacdonald
jennimacdonald
5 years 1 month ago

@ginidietrich Thanks Gini. I’ll keep that in mind and dedicate my first written word post to you! Looking forward to the email.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@johnfalchetto @DannyBrown I totally agree that everyone deserves a chance and that, within reason, there are some things an intern can help a small business owner do. And it definitely depends on the person. But I think we’d be setting some (if not most) up for failure if we handed them the client or company social media keys.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@JuliaStewartPR LOL! OK – I will do that!

I’m VERY happy with Spiral16 for listening and monitoring. We pay about $500 a month and it’s worth every penny.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
5 years 1 month ago

@johnfalchetto @Shonali @EricaAllison This is for you…from Jack Bauer http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qPpuwiLyYUs

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