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The key to getting results from your PR

February, 2014

Nothing highlights the difference between lazy and inspired PR more than the press release frenzy that is Valentine’s Day.

In the build up to the big day, journalists were taking to Twitter to highlight the tenuous, sometimes downright embarrassing, angles used to try and shoehorn romance into what was a blatant attempt at getting a free plug for a client’s product or service.

In truth, for a PR professional, it is difficult to defend the industry from the scorn heaped upon it by those in the media at times like this.

Human interest stories

However, among the mire one gem shone brightly. A story that had been identified as having real human interest value, had been delivered simply and which garnered much national press and broadcast coverage over a number of years.

At Swizzels Matlow, the company that makes Love Hearts sweets, one in four employees at its factory in Derbyshire was in a relationship with a co-worker, with 61 couples out of a workforce of 500.

The family firm said workers had even started their romance by sending each other personalised Love Hearts along the factory production line.

“All 61 couples met at work and now many are married, engaged or have children,” said the sweet firm’s director Jeremy Dee. “Love Hearts clearly inspire romance.”

National press coverage

The story has been carried by the Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, Daily Mirror and Metro, and most recently a company spokesman was interviewed on BBC Radio Five Live.

The coverage proved that by putting in some effort to work with a client on an interesting news angle, rather than just relying on finding a lazy way to piggy-back on a significant date, you can produce real results.

A good PR pro will advise a client against trying for a quick and easy hit on the back of events such as Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day, but will always be able to identify a genuine story with a potential for gaining coverage.

Even on the day of love, less is usually more.

posted in: advice, media relations,

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