Business

Public Relations – Why is it important?

By: Niall Gillett

 

Does anything good make the news in Belize today? If a visitor were to watch our news, whether in print or on air, what would they think? Would it all be bad news?

Despite what appears to be a continuous stream of gloom and doom, there are good and positive stories out there to be reported, and to be fair, the media does make an attempt to promote those stories once they are put out to the public.

As a former newspaper editor, I have seen countless press releases pass by my desk. Only a few made it to publication due to myriad of reasons, but mainly because the number of them that told a publishable story was so meager.

The issue is that the stories are out there, but how much of time should be spent trying to decrypt them?

There are so many small businesses, associations, non-governmental and not-for-profit organizations out there, doing good and sometimes amazing work. But they are not doing an acceptable enough job of developing and telling that story to the public via the media.

They are worried about budgets and losing already tight funding opportunities, so they work harder, accomplishing much, but finding more and more that their chronicles are not being discovered, much less heard and understood, by the very same public that they intend to serve.

What can your organization promote? You do not have to wait until there is some magnificent accomplishment to tell the world, as there are many everyday happenings that can be developed into a valid story and promoted!

For example, did you just hire a new director or bring on board a scientist? Was your website recently updated and now offers better information to your readers? Did your organization win an award, or participate in some philanthropy of note? Is it your second (or fiftieth) anniversary? These events can be a good public story, provided that they are written as such!

Take some time, and look at the good work your organization is doing. Look for the story in it which appears to have a good public appeal, and then write a short, enticing press release about it, and then send it to your local media.

If your stories are relevant and newsworthy, you should start to see your business, NGO or Association make the news more regularly!

In my next article, I will discuss what makes a good press release, how to write one, and the best way to get it out there.

Niall Gillett is the Agency Principal of Nauta Vero Public Relations and Communications. He may be contacted at [email protected]


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