Marketing Focus – Why Social Selling and PR have so much in common

The Shaw Marketing Services team headed down to Digital Marketing Day in Malaga recently to listen to some excellent speakers talking about the latest trends in digital marketing and how to harness its power for promotion.

Isabel Iglesias from Etrania gave a really interesting presentation on social selling, where she showed the right and wrong ways to approach people on LinkedIn and other networks and what worked well. Her key point was don’t just try and sell to me before doing your research, building up a relationship and offering quality content, as it doesn’t go down well in these social networks. As she was talking I realised that PR and social selling have a lot in common and you need to have the same mindset to make these forms of communication work for you.

Public Relations is very much a soft sell approach, where a story, or an event is at the fore and the company is behind. Some companies worry about this, as they feel their sales message won’t get across, but they don’t realise that championing an education message, organising a fun event, or supporting a charity will bring their brand into contact with hundreds or thousands of people, who because they aren’t being sold to will be much more responsive to the message. Read our blog about what is public relations and why does it matter to find out more about this great marketing tool

The same goes for social media – the occasional sales message is fine, but it’s about delivering interesting and attractive content which your target client wants to receive, rather than giving them the hard sell. You are better to drip feed related content to your business and build a social media strategy around your brand personality, rather than create accounts to simply broadcast advertising messages. This may not have a direct sales result, but it is building your brand, giving your company a strong online presence and if done correctly, builds a relationship with your potential clients. The aim, just like PR, is that when they are ready to buy, they will have a positive view of your company and actually want to spend their money with you.

We recommend that you embrace both these soft sell approaches and use them sensitively, people do not want to feel they are being hit over the head with your advertising, they would prefer to find it out themselves in many cases. This doesn’t mean that you can’t advertise as well, and indeed PR and social media works particularly well hand in hand with paid advertising. By having paid messages out there, which are more direct and sales driven, and complimenting them PR and social media, you will have more impact on and offline and they will each boost the power of the other.

If you need any support with PR, online marketing or advertising, the Shaw Marketing Services team can help you to communicate intelligently and use a range of marketing methods to achieve your objectives. Please contact us to find out how we could work together.