How to Leverage Digital PR for US Expansion

July 21, 2015

in Market Your Brand

Authored by Shana Starr

How to Leverage Digital PR for US Expansion

Thanks to the massive expansion of digital communications in the US, it has never been easier—or more cost-effective—to get your PR messaging to American audiences.

Successfully making an impact and building your brand, or launching your product in the US requires you to be creative, be bold, and to take risks. In a world filled with mass quantities of information, your competitors’ hesitation can quickly work to your advantage.

Digital PR empowers companies who know how to leverage the power of the internet. With statistics showing that 36 million people in the UK use the internet on a daily basis, you can reach a vast audience through online channels, meaning your news can spread further and faster than ever.

The key game-changer with PR in the US is that you can reach a larger, highly-targeted audience more quickly and cost effectively for a longer period of time because you’re not tied to traditional print-based distribution with disparate coverage and sluggish response times.

How can you determine your company’s expansion message?

Before embarking on a PR campaign to promote your company stateside, you need to determine how your brand identity will resonate with American buyers. You need to know exactly what you represent to these new audiences, while maintaining the core values of what earned you an advantageous position in the UK marketplace.

Once you have identified what you want your brand to embody in the US, you can then begin to develop an online presence that represents your company and what you want to achieve by expanding.

How are you different from your competitors—both at home and in the US? And how do these differences matter to a new and growing set of customers? Clearly define your identity and make sure that your voice, your message, and your PR strategies all align. Then you can share your story with the US public, with the press, and on social media platforms.

Thanks to the near real-time communication of social media, your press releases can garner almost immediate engagement from interested customers. An engaged public can be the biggest advocate for your brand, and possibly the biggest factor in helping your company or your product reach the masses.

Win them over and you will immediately see the impact they can have on your company’s bottom line. Empowering customers through social media creates a sense of purpose and makes your customers feel as though they are a part of your company’s newfound growth.

What tools are involved?

Digital PR means using content marketing, social media, and search engine optimization to make the most impact. Because people source and share information online, digital PR is about starting conversations, educating people, and inspiring action. Through the use of social media you can speak directly to your target audience.

A digital publication that covers your company might also include a link back to your website in the newsletter emails sent to subscribers, which is likely to be larger than its print subscriber base. Leverage media coverage by including links in your own marketing materials, which will give customers and prospects the opportunity to learn about your success. Posting media coverage in the press room of your website, as well as on social media will boost your organic search results. Social media postings of your media coverage also gives you the opportunity to share your story with friends and colleagues, as well as industry peers and potential customers.

How do you best utilize digital PR tactics?

Digital PR presents a breadth of ways to raise awareness and reach this new diverse audience. In fact, you might have more choices than traditional PR ever presented. For example, you may need to curate more original and creative content.  Maybe you need to share stories and provide commentary on topics that are not directly related to your company, but will help demonstrate the multiple facets of your brand.

Like any PR initiative, the key lies in creating compelling, shareable stories. This is where creativity meets social media-savvy. Identifying the best tactics for targeting your audience is essential.

Also important is finding the primary influencers in your industry—bloggers, journalists or simply other known professionals active on social media. Connect with them and get to know them. Provide them with interesting content at the right time and they’ll write about your brand.

Get active—and remain active—online, whether it be it blogging, participating in LinkedIn group discussions, or sharing posts. Your PR activity will then be more effective because you’ll have authority as a thought leader.

In turn, make your media efforts work harder by repurposing press releases to create additional online content such as infographics, contributed articles, and blogs.

Public relations is about how you present yourself and your brand to the world, how you want to be seen, and what you want people to know about you and your company. With simple understanding of how to best use digital PR, you can establish your existing brand identity to a US audience hungry for your company’s products or solutions.

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