How to Get Everyone To Talk About Your Brand
“People don't believe what you tell them. They rarely believe what you show them. They often believe what their friends tell them. They always believe what they tell themselves.” - Seth Godin
Because of the rise of influencer marketing, earned media and PR might seem like archaic topics.
But an article in Techcrunch or an “As Seen in Vogue” tag on your site can immediately improve your stature in customers' eyes.
Carrie Rose put it beautifully: PR signals trust in the user journey.
Because it’s not you as a brand telling them how great you are, it’s what other people say about you that customers come across when they research your product.
But, testing press coverage takes time, effort, and money for smaller brands.
You can do other things to get others to talk about you before you get that mention in big-name publishers.
1. Create memorable moments
If you tell your story right, you can create buzz around your company and capture the attention of larger sources. Earned media press mention will come to you naturally.
In a previous case study, we wrote about the Surreal Cereal and its ingenious OOH ad.
The creatives made the rounds on social media, newsletters, and blogs. And they eventually caught the attention of Ad Age and AdWeek.
Ryan Holiday mentioned this strategy in his book Trust Me, I'm Lying: Confessions of a Media Manipulator. The thesis is to get smaller bloggers or social media accounts to write about you; then, this process will repeat until you are featured on the mainstream news.
Nik Sharma talked about this strategy that worked well for his clients. We are seeing more and more whitelisted content as ads, but not to the point there’s no more arbitrage.
"Whitelisting" means promoting your content on an external media platform.
For example, instead of boasting about how great their new mascara is through their brand account, Milani ran an ad through Byrdie.
You can also do this through creators' accounts like Casetify did.
Let others speak on your behalf to your audience so you are not the one directly selling to them.
3. Product seeding for customer reviews
When converting customers to make a purchase, no social proof is more effective than real customer reviews.
Other than reaching out to existing customers for reviews, there are two less conventional ways we found:
1. Soft Services recruits testers for new products for free before launch. So by the time it launches, there are reviews from testers on the site to help customers make the purchase decision - the chicken and egg problem is solved.
2. Some brands collaborate with Things Testing, a site that aims to collect real reviews from real people for genuine reviews.