Who doesn’t like free publicity?

Free publicity is one of my favorite subjects to talk about because it’s all about PR Power on a Budget. You can get the biggest bang for your buck when you utilize all of the tricks and tools that are available to promote yourself or your business.

I could go on for days about all of your options, but for today – let’s concentrate on 3 Ways to Get Free Publicity to put you on the right path!

First up, read one of my own articles called 7 Reasons to Give a Workshop. Technically, by giving a workshop you aren’t working for free – but there are countless publicity and marketing opportunities you can take advantage of by hosting and promoting your own events. Read the full article here on how events help you get free publicity to promote your brand, raise your expert status and of course – help you get noticed!

Next, let’s look at what promotion vehicles you have in place and how you can use them to your advantage.  If you have a blog and are writing as often as you should be, you have a great way to get free publicity for your own business. Write about your new product launch, where you’re speaking next or your own charity involvement.  Get permission to link to other businesses or influence leaders circles — and make sure to promote your blog articles on social media for that extra punch.

Lastly, I want to point out a tool I use all the time — HARO or Help A Reporter Out.  HARO is a secret weapon I recommend to all of my clients to build their media presence.  In basic terms, you answer queries from hungry journalists and by positioning your responses the right way, you can get quoted and interviewed in a variety of publications, tv, radio and blog sources. If you want to learn about how HARO works and how to use it to your advantage, read this article chockfull of good advice!

I write and speak often about free publicity tools and tricks, so be sure to follow me on Twitter @RobinSamora to learn more!

PR, Promotions and Publicity aren’t a one size fit all strategy to get you noticed.  And, that’s a good thing.  Variety is the spice of life! In creating a PR roadmap, you want to customize the outreach experience and connect the dots from where a client is now – to where they want to go to be seen, heard and remembered. So the road less traveled is not the journey of choice!

For a handful of our Fortune 500 corporate clients, Partner Promotions is the go-to source for Brand Ambassador work in Boston. Companies like Comcast and CBS hire our marketing teams to promote their brands and actively engage with prospects and customers — to showcase new services, demonstrate products and turn loyal followers into raving fans.

After 15 years of hiring Brand Ambassadors, I’ve concluded that for me, hiring is primarily intuition based. Is the Brand Ambassador believable or not? Do I trust him/her? Would I give them the keys to my car? Eye contact is important too, or lack thereof, and I can’t discount appearance.  If my gut tells me to move forward, I almost always do, followed by a reference check (gut usually wins).

So, how does an eager and responsible college student or professional of any age — who wants to make extra cash get into the Brand Ambassador business?

Here’s An Insider’s Look – How to Get a Brand Ambassador Job at Any Age  

  1. Google Brand Ambassador companies in your area and check Facebook Groups or Craig’s List for event/gig postings; Better yet, make a connection with other Brand Ambassadors and get WOM (word of mouth) referrals.  They’re worth their weight in gold.
  2. Apply online with a headshot and resume. If you don’t have a headshot, use an attractive and recent photo of yourself — with no arms or plants sticking out of your head. Please don’t be half naked unless you’re looking for a swimsuit model job. No experience? Highlight your sales, marketing and customer service skills.
  3. Score an interview by writing a clear, concise and friendly email. Use proper English and provide contact information. This is not the time to be lazy or sloppy in your writing or coy in your contact details. Impressions count to those reading your email and hundreds of others. Trust me. Delete is an easy key to reach.
  4. Meet in person ASAP.  Be early, well dressed and groomed. Bonus points for confirming your appointment by email and text. Remember to mention a personal referral if you have one and highlight that connection. You really could earn thousands of dollars from this one meeting.  Make it count!
  5. You are unique so accentuate the positive. Have an awesome smile? Flaunt it! But, you’re not on stage giving a one person show. Be mindful that if you’re hired, you’re representing not only the client who considers you a reflection of their brand — but the Brand Ambassador company too. It’s OK to stand out, but not like a sore thumb.
  6. Highlight your experience and own it. Why would a company want to pay you double minimum wage or more?  Not sure? Make a list. You’re outgoing, friendly, worked in sales and marketing, love people, sold credit card upgrades – plus you’re flexible. State the facts, show your resume, hold eye contact and be genuine. You can be sincere and still own your power.
  7. Don’t force a square peg in a round hole.  If there’s not a connection with the hiring manager or if you don’t like the brand, let it go. There are better opportunities out there. Follow your gut to see if the fit is right. If integrity is one of your core values, honor it. You’ll be a lousy Brand Ambassador if you’re not all in.
  8. When you’re hired, give thanks. Thank your hiring manager with an email. Read the study guides or marketing materials more than once. Follow directions. Check in frequently to show you’re interested, but not needy. Get more experience, rinse and repeat.
  9. Build a referral network so you can take a team with you. Want to make life easier for a hiring manager? Bring an established team with you to your next assignment. You’ll save your boss time and aggravation, plus be a shining star. There’s also negotiating power here as a manager, which is paid at a higher rate.
  10. Keep business business and personal personal. Don’t overlap the two. News travels fast and not always to the right places.

Side note: My kids, their friends, friends of friends, strangers and people from every walk of life have helped with the many clients and Brand Ambassador positions we’ve had over the last 20 years and counting. PR, Promotions and marketing isn’t just for entrepreneurs and small business owners – it’s for anyone with a message to share.

Share a message in your voice. That’s what makes it authentic.

It’s been said (and felt) that a #1 fear of many people is public speaking, with death a close second. Death may be feared because you don’t necessarily know when it’s coming, but speaking in front of an audience is usually a choice.  Why be judged? Why put yourself at risk?

Right off the bat, public speaking gives you an opportunity to convey a message. To make a difference. To showcase YOU and your expertise.

Overcoming the fear of public speaking will open more doors than you can imagine.

To get you started, I’ve collected a few articles that offer some insight on this fear. And, as in many fears and phobias, the first part is acknowledging that you have one!

Let’s start with Five Reasons Why The Fear Of Public Speaking Is Great For You. I read the title twice before diving in.Yes, there are 5 reasons! Find out why a fear of public speaking can actually help you become a better public speaker.

If you’ve ever watched a TED talk, you know they have some of the best and most interesting speakers in the world on their stages. Check out 7 Powerful Public Speaking Tips From One of the Most-Watched TED Talks Speakers. You’ll find tips and a few tricks you can use today.

Then, when you’ve read these two articles and you just KNOW you want to move past your fears, learn from someone who’s been there and done just that.

How I (Finally) Got Over My Fear of Public Speaking gives you a good idea on how to tackle and overcome the jitters of public speaking.
Now as for me? I’ll be giving a keynote address for #GoBrandYourself week at Fresno State in April.

I’ll read these articles again and share.

Gee’s and G’s have more in common than you think. And, it wasn’t really apparent until my mastermind buddy from Denver reminded me over the Thanksgiving holiday.

Quite simply, they’re the G’s of Giving, Gratitude and Gentleness.

Giving — When we look at giving rather than getting, there’s a mindset shift that is powerful. And, when we give with intention, the vibration is amplified. Giving without thinking of what we’ll get in return opens the heart and sets the stage for the second G.

Gratitude — It seems to be a no-brainer to be grateful for what we have, though many of us forget about the daily practice. The game changer is when we actually look at our problems and challenges and be grateful for them, for they show us the lessons we need to learn (whether we like it or not).

Gentleness — Business, life, pressure, meetings, deadlines, not getting what you want when you want it and for Goodness sakes, hurry it up! A dose of gentleness first with ourselves and then with others can make all the difference in not only our personal world, but our business environment. No one’s perfect, so stop pretending to be. Gentleness is an act of compassion.

Why so much about the 3 G’s? It’s the holiday season. We’re busy, running around, doing for others and not always ourselves.

Plan some time in your business and your life for the 3 G’s. Give with love, not because you have to. Be Grateful of the Gifts you have and share. And be Gentle with yourself, and others.

Maybe your life will change too.

Let’s talk shop! With the holiday season right around the corner, it’s time to buckle down the hatches and be ready for increased web traffic, increased sales and a positive start to 2015. And all of that starts with your online presence!

The first article I’d like to share is More Than Keywords: 7 Concepts of Advanced On-Page SEO by Cyrus Shepard for the Moz.com blog.

“As marketers, helping search engines answer that basic question is one of our most important tasks. Search engines can’t read pages like humans can, so we incorporate structure and clues as to what our content means. This helps provide the relevance element of search engine optimization that matches queries to useful results…”

Next up, A Google Analytics Setup Checklist is a great read to better metrics and insights about your web traffic. Brian Massey writes a solid column on the behavioral database that we call “Analytics” that’s generally only used by clients for basic reporting: sessions, visitors, revenue and conversions. Yet, there are so many other insights to be gleaned…”

To work on your social sites, I’d recommend you implement  The 15 Minute Social Media Audit Everyone Can Do by Kevan Lee for the Buffer App blog. It’s so easy to update your image, keywords and marketing message. Giving it all a fresh look right around the holidays and the New Year is a great way to make a great impression! Remember we want to Be Seen in 2015!

Whether you do the work behind the scenes yourself, or you have a team of assistants helping you, it’s important to have the technical aspects of your website in place so you can monitor your promotional efforts and tweak for peak results.

Hope you enjoy these articles, and please feel free to share using the buttons below.

Facebook login pageIf you are keeping up a bit with all things Facebook, you might have heard grumblings and rumblings about how Facebook is not yielding the results it used to give and that in order to be ‘seen’ we need to start paying for advertising. Well I am here to tell you; don’t believe everything you read. I am not saying that Facebook advertising isn’t necessary, you can, however, still be effective on Facebook if you have the right strategy and knowledge — and maybe add Facebook advertising to enhance all your other efforts!

This week for Robin’s Rainmakers, I’d like to highlight a few brilliant posts about the changes in the Facebook algorithm and how we shouldn’t be discounting this big giant. It might be time to update your strategies instead.

First up is These 5 Facebook Strategies Will Prepare Your Business for the Holidays by Jim Belosic for Maximize Social Business. And yes, I read it and realize the 5th strategy talks about Facebook advertising, but it’s just one of many new strategies to implement.

Next, I recommend you read one of both of these Facebook articles by Dorien Morin-van Dam of More In Media. They are both positive towards using Facebook and being creative in using the current Facebook tools and functions available.

6 Surprisingly Fast Ways To Curate Content from Facebook takes the new algorithm  and explains how you can use it to your advantage and post just the content that Facebook is looking for you to post — in a way, giving it a boost. Then check out 5 Awesome Ways Facebook Tagging Produces Positive Results for some creative ways to use pictures and the @tagging function.

If these ideas are not enough to get your creative Facebook juices flowing, read about the 13 Ways to Beat the Facebook Algorithm strategies and tactics. This article by Larry King for Wordstream should leave you with the feeling of ‘Yes, I can do that’!

Enjoy reading, and if you like share and comment below!

It was an exciting week presenting my new workshop, 5 Ways Social Media Can Get You More Sales, Customers and Profits, at the Small Business Expo in Boston. Thank you to all who attended and followed up personally. It’s an exciting time for Social PR and it’s critical to a company’s branding and success – whether you’re a solo business owner, or the biggest fish in any pond!

I love sharing great articles by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs and giving credit where credit is due. The article How to Create an Elevator Pitch That Will Get You Funded by Steve Blank gives detailed information and some great tips on how to perfect your elevator pitch (or speech). Whether you’re looking to get funding or need to promote your consulting services, perfecting your elevator pitch is one of the most important things you’ll want to accomplish this week. Get a few great ‘how to’ tips here from Entrepreneur.com.

You may be familiar with HARO, but do you know about their parent company, Vocus? They’ve got an active and well-read blog that hits the in boxes of industry insiders, experts and small business owners around the globe. I liked this article 9 Things You Should Consider in Your PR Plan by Jim Dougherty because it lays out a PR Plan, clearly step by step. Work on one, three or all nine to improve your current PR plan. (And, if you don’t have a plan, we have to talk!)

Lastly, we’re featuring The Power of Testimonials (and How We Get Great Ones) written by Alex Turnbull.  This is a MUST read for anyone in business. Here’s one little snippet we’ve highlighted, but take a minute to click on the link to learn more.

“Good testimonials aren’t fluffy; they communicate very specifically the type of person the testimonial writer is and the type of problem they’ve been able to overcome. This helps readers put themselves in the storyteller’s shoes.”

And that’s a wrap for this week’s edition of Robin’s Rainmakers! If you ever have a suggestion for a great article to feature, please send me an email. I’d love to include it here.

Leading marketing and social media strategist Mara Glazer’s all-new three day “The Next Big Buzz” event at the Hilton Baltimore Camden Yards in Baltimore from August 2-4, 2013, features a full slate of high-energy interactive presentations and workshops that promise to transform women entrepreneurs into widely known — and highly paid — Buzzworthy Biz Babes.

Leading marketing and social media strategist Mara Glazer

Leading marketing and social media strategist Mara Glazer

Women entrepreneurs who want to become a celebrity in their field, so that they can get widely known – and highly paid – for doing what they do best, can now visit http://thenextbigbuzzevent.com and register for leading marketing and social media strategist Mara Glazer’s all-new “The Next Big Buzz” event in Baltimore from August 2-4, 2013.

The 3-day event, which will be held at the Hilton Baltimore Camden Yards, features a full slate of high-energy interactive presentations and workshops that promise to transform attendees into “Buzzworthy Biz Babes.” Key topics that Mara Glazer and her team of hand-picked presenters will focus upon include:

  • How to create more buzz in a business by thinking like a celebrity.
  • How to finally demystify online marketing, the web and social media channels to explode a business and capture more leads.
  • How to create a business that supports a desirable and healthy work-life balance – while still bringing in serious income.

In addition, attendees will have ample opportunity throughout the event to network with over 200 successful entrepreneurs in order to find new clients, create joint venture partnerships, and get to know some extremely influential connections.

“This event is for women entrepreneurs who want to get known — and get paid! – for doing what they do best,” commented Mara Glazer, who will also reveal the secrets that enabled her to generate and translate an enormous amount of buzz into multiple 6-figure businesses in less than a year. “It’s also perfect for those who have reached a point where they seriously need to cut the crap when it comes to small business marketing, and get real about what it takes to succeed as a Buzzworthy entrepreneur.”

“Lots of experts only talk about becoming successful – but Mara shows you how,” noted Robin Samora, the principal of Boston-based PR firm Robin Samora Inc., who is an event sponsor and presenter. “She’s all about implementation, action and results. She tells people what they need to know — not just what they want to know. And just as importantly, she’s incredibly fun and inspiring.”

Speaking of her reputation for being fun and inspiring, Miss Glazer also had some comforting words for those who dread so-called professional development events that are little more than boring lectures from talking heads: “Make no mistake: this isn’t three days of being glued to a chair! This event is going to be a party. Yes, we’ll be giving out amazing content, but those fortunate enough to attend will also get a once-in-a-lifetime chance to network, let their hair down, and definitely shake their booty!”

Women entrepreneurs who aspire to be Buzzworthy Biz Babes and reap the rewards of living amazing and successful lives — both professionally and personally — can register for Mara Glazer’s The Next Big Buzz at: http://thenextbigbuzzevent.com/. The registration fee is $697.

For more information or media inquiries, contact Paul Valleau, Executive Assistant to Mara Glazer, at 866-430-4680 or Paul(at)maraglazer(dot)com.

About Mara Glazer

Leading marketing and social media strategist Mara Glazer helps entrepreneurs build amazing businesses that allow them to live amazing lives. She blends online and offline marketing strategies to help business owners create global buzz, and translate that into money in the bank.

Learn more at http://maraglazer.com/.

Robin Samora Inc., a Boston-based branding, promotions and PR firm, is offering an aspiring female student or recent graduate (within the past one year) the opportunity to attend the upcoming “Demand Success 2013” conference presented by Vocus, which will be held in Washington D.C. on June 20 and 21.

 

Robin Samora Inc., a Boston-based branding, promotions and PR firm that works with experts, entrepreneurs and authors, announced today that it is offering a scholarship that will enable an aspiring female student or recent graduate the chance to attend the upcoming “Demand Success 2013” conference presented by Vocus, a leading solutions provider that helps businesses reach and influence customers via social networks, online and media.

Designed to “make results happen in marketing,” the conference, which will be held in Washington D.C. on June 20 and 21, features keynotes by Arianna Huffington, Rohit Bhargava, Jeremiah Owyang and a host of other thought leaders who will share must-have insights and advice on lead generation, online marketing, brand building in the information economy, and more.

While the fee to attend the conference for a non-Vocus customer is $1095, the recipient of Robin Samora Inc.’s scholarship will receive a complimentary ticket — and a remarkable opportunity to connect with experts and influencers, witness the future of marketing and PR, and glean insights and information to advance their career. They will also have the chance to build invaluable relationships that will last for decades.

“Giving back and paying it forward are at the very heart of success, both professionally and personally,” commented Robin Samora, the principal and founder of Robin Samora Inc. “It’s my hope that the deserving woman who receives the scholarship will use this as a springboard to make positive impact in our world, and ultimately, inspire others to do the same.”

Aspiring female students or recent graduates (within the past one year) who are interested in competing for the scholarship are asked to submit an approximately 300 word essay that captures the essence of their professional vision with respect to the following:

• how it will support or in some way benefit other women
• how it will foster a legacy of giving back and paying it forward
• how they envision themselves turning their vision into reality

All essays can be emailed to Robin (at) RobinSamoraInc (dot) com. The application deadline is June 3 at 11:59pm EDT, and the winner will be notified by 5:00pm EDT on June 8.

Selected essays will also be published (either whole or edited) on the Robin Samora Inc., website, and in other digital and print communication material.

For more information or media inquiries, contact Robin Samora at (617) 921-3448 or Robin (at) RobinSamoraInc (dot) com.

About Robin Samora Inc.
Telling a story is personal. Sharing it is an art. Technology makes it global. Robin Samora Inc., a Boston based PR, branding and promotions firm blends all three to take its clients’ businesses and brands to the next level. With clients like Comcast, WBZ-TV and Blue Man Group, and a roster of authors, entrepreneurs and experts nationwide, the firm prides itself on being a “Promotional GPS” that takes its clients’ brands where they want to go to be seen, heard, engaged and remembered. With over two decades of experience, the firm is as comfortable on major media highways as it is on out-of-the-way niche back roads.

When it comes to branding and lead generation, while new strategies and tactics emerge on what seems like a weekly (if not daily) basis, there’s one “old favorite” that continues to withstand the test of time, and re-establish itself as both a cost effective and results-based way to create valuable mind share and visibility – which, ultimately, boosts sales and profits. Of course, I’m referring to promotional products.

From upscale laptop and tablet bags to functional flash drives and everything in between, promotional products are trusted by business of all sizes – particularly solo, small and mid-size operations — to get and stay ahead of the competition. Indeed, a giveaway that’s of some value to a potential customer creates an opportunity for engagement – which is the gateway for the lead generation process. This is especially true when the service or product is more complicated to explain, or has a higher perceived value.

Of course, not all promotional products are created equal, and it’s important to choose the right item(s) that will make the strongest and longest impression. Here are five key things to keep in mind to help achieve this important goal:

  1. Use Your Promotional Product to Create Differentiation

    If you want to stand out from the crowd as a leader, then you need a promotional product that your audience will like, talk about, and appreciate.  Even if they choose not to keep the giveaway, chances are they will pass it on to someone who they care about – provided, of course, that they find it valuable.

  2. Choose a Promotional Product that’s Functional

    Align your promotional product to the season and/or event where they’ll be used more than once.  For example, my company has given away extremely well-received insulated cooler bags during the summer months, and branded wine openers at Wine Expos. When audiences perceive that a product is functional, they’re less likely to discard it (think of how many lanyards end up in the garbage can at the end of an event).

  3. Don’t Over-Spend on Promotional Products – but Don’t Cut Corners, Either

    Many companies are now giving less expensive promotional products to their audiences in a high traffic location in order to make an impact, while keeping costs under control. When done properly, this can be a successful strategy. Just ensure that you don’t give out ‘junk’ – it’s better not to give out anything at all, than to be associated with something that will diminish or damage your brand.

  4. Match your Promotional Product to your Audience

    Audiences with large buying power and who represent high potential value (as customers) will be expecting a promotional product that aligns with their position. Also keep in mind that big ticket audiences expect more — even if it’s free — especially if they’ve been loyal to the brand.

  5. Remember to Fully Brand your Promotional Products

    Promotional products can have a lifespan that lasts for years – often decades. We’ve all seen everything from memory sticks to stress balls pads that feature a company that we may never heard about or, at least, are not currently doing business with. As such, it’s essential that everything is fully branded with your name, logo, tagline and contact information. You never know who will see it, and how it may influence them to choose you vs. the competition.

Ultimately, and above all else, keep in mind that today’s customers have more marketing savvy than ever before – regardless of whether they’re buying farm tractors or the latest ultra thin smart phones – and, like all customers, they want to be appreciated. If you choose the right promotional products and distribute them in the right way, you’ll fulfill that expectation, and set your business apart.