When it comes to driving your B2B success, there’s a lot in a name

Three ways we can help your business thrive

B2B-media-branding-Ripley-PR

Any good business leader keeps up with what’s going on in the world, be it at the courthouse down the street or a revolution abroad. News affects business, and you want to know what’s going on in the community you serve.  The news media can also help build your B2B brand but sometimes it takes professionals – like those here at Ripley PR, a B2B Knoxville-area public relations agency with global reach — to cut through the clutter and ensure good media placement. Here’s why that’s important for your B2B business:

  1. Brand recognition. If you have at least an occasional voice in local, national or international news media, it can help cement your reputation as a thought leader and expert in your field. It also ensures your name appears more readily in search engine results. This is especially true if reputable media and websites link to your company’s site.
  2. Success breeds success. If members of the news media consider you an expert in your field, even locally, they will seek you out for comment on topical stories, especially if they are already aware of your expertise via a professional public relations firm. At Ripley, we have a large and proprietary database of international media contacts to help build your brand and reputation.
  3. Experts seek out experts. All of this boils down to one thing: When one B2B business seeks out another for services, they want the best. Decision-makers will mine for all information available on their prospective partner. If they find links to news articles you were quoted in, or your bylined name, it will bolster your credibility when it comes time for them to select a B2B partner

We can help get your brand out there to bolster your business, via media relations, byline placement or earned media. Contact Ripley PR today to develop an expert B2B public relations strategy.

Thomas Fraser, Senior Content Specialist

This post was written by on August 21, 2017


After the IPO: the Importance of Investor Relations to Your Company’s Future

It’s an enticing prospect for an entrepreneur: build and grow an innovative startup with the goal of taking it public. The prospect of wealth generation through an Initial Public Offering (IPO) is hard to resist.

An IPO is just the beginning of the story

A good investor and public relations strategy can help generate the coverage and excitement necessary to give your IPO a boost, but that’s not the end of the story. Jim Barbagallo, writing for PR Daily, says that once your company goes public, the need for expert messaging increases:

The benefits of enhanced publicity come with the increased responsibility of communicating appropriately, leveraging newfound media attention to support strategic business goals while playing by fair market rules and maintaining corporate transparency.

Complying with regulations

This means being fluent in financial reporting regulations. For instance, after an IPO, the SEC bans the use of promotional publicity during a quiet period of 40 to 90 days to avoid artificially inflating the stock price. Releasing any information that influence an investor’s position during that period could land your business in trouble with regulators.

Sell your story

According to the Institute for Public Relations, long gone are the days when good investor relations meant basic financial disclosure. Investors want to understand the value of your company and that calls for expertise in crafting compelling narratives.

It pays to partner with an experienced investor relations and public relations agency like Ripley PR. We can expertly craft messages that not only appeal to stockholders but attract the attention of the mass media.

Here at Ripley PR, we know the importance of stories in helping your business better sell its brand to possible investors. We understand investor and business relations. Our experts can help your company gain the recognition it needs to pull off a successful IPO and then navigate the complex world of corporate communications. Contact us today.

 

Heather Ripley, Founder/CEO

This post was written by on August 17, 2017


4 Examples of How Manufacturing Public Relations Can Help You Recruit

Image of manufacturing public relations for Ripley PRRecruiting can be painful. But there are ways and means to position your manufacturing company as a great place to work.

Here are four examples of how manufacturing public relations can help you with recruitment.

Potential employees will:

  • Read about you in the media. Being quoted as an expert within your industry or having a feature article about your company in an authoritative publication will go a long way in making a good impression with potential job applicants. If you are positioned as an expert in the industry, potential employees will view your company as a great place to build their careers.
  • See you speak at industry events. Trade shows and industry events offer great opportunities to network with potential clients and employees. Being a speaker at an industry event will once again position you as an expert within the industry and create and opportunity for your company to get more media attention. Your public relations team can help you secure those speaking opportunities and leverage it for maximum reach.
  • Get an inside-view of what the company culture is like. A big component of manufacturing public relations is social media management. Using social media platforms to share company news and tell stories about the company culture will help potential recruits decide whether the company is good fit for them or not.
  • See growth opportunities within your company. Seeing news in the media about new hires, promotions, and industry awards will show potential recruits that your manufacturing company is growing and that there are opportunities to advance their careers. Public relations professionals will help you with ideas to showcase your company growth.

If you are interested in learning more about hiring public relations professionals to help you with your recruitment efforts, contact Ripley PR today.

Celeste Vlok, Senior Brand Manager

This post was written by on August 17, 2017


Stomp the Cockroaches: Maintaining Your B2B Social Media Image Through PR

Except for some overenthusiastic entomologists, does anybody like cockroaches? I don’t. Anyway, you’re a business owner and cockroaches don’t concern you. But, from a B2B public relations standpoint, they probably should.Cockroach

So, a cockroach crawls into a bar …

Here’s a story: I was looking for a restaurant the other day, so, I pulled out my phone and did some googling. I saw a nearby restaurant with good ratings and was about to head over. …Then, I saw the picture. Someone had snapped a pic of a cockroach crawling across their table and uploaded it to Google Maps. Guess where I didn’t go?

Social media problems

How does this tale apply to your business? You see, cockroaches aren’t just insects. They can be the persistent image problems that can pop up for your company on social media. And, like the insects, they can proliferate much faster than you expect if left unaddressed.

Social media lets anyone be a brand ambassador for your company, and that’s not always a good thing. One bad review or an embarrassing photo might not seem like much, but, bit by bit, they can add up and damage your brand’s reputation; however, you also don’t want to go around blindly responding to negative publicity without taking a considered approach.

How we can help

An experienced B2B public relations agency like Ripley PR can provide the tools to preserve and enhance your reputation. We can monitor reviews on all social media platforms and respond to them in a professional manner. Engaging customers who offer good reviews creates good will. Properly addressing negative reviews can help minimize the damage and even give you the opportunity to convert the complaint into a positive outcome.

Call Ripley PR at 865-977-1973 and learn how we can help protect your brand’s image. Our experienced team has the know-how to help you craft a winning social media strategy. Contact us today.

Joel Davis, Senior Content Specialist

This post was written by on August 15, 2017


How to drive franchise prospect engagement

franchise experienceThree ways to communicate your franchise brand experience to prospects

Successful franchisors know that the support and system you provide to a franchisee is one of your biggest selling points. However, how well is your franchise communicating this information to your prospects?

As franchise public relations experts, we’re constantly developing ways to help our clients better communicate with prospects. Franchise prospects do their research ahead of time before they even pick up the phone or send an email to talk. Because if this, your number one goal when preparing your message for franchise prospects is to communicate what makes your support and systems better than anyone else in your industry.

Besides earned media coverage, the best place to do this is on your website. Below are three things you should be communicating with your prospects as soon as they land on your franchise page:

  1. What’s my experience going to be like? When investing in a franchise, people want to know what they’ll be getting into. It’s important that you convey what the day-to-day operations of your franchise will look like. You should also communicate what a new franchisee can expect in the first month, quarter and year of owning their business. It’s important that you convey exactly what this will be like, warts and all. Any business owner knows that there are going to be parts of running their business that will be unpleasant, and it’s your job to be transparent about what those unpleasant moments might be like while also highlighting the enjoyable parts of owning a franchise. This will not only build trust with potential prospects, it will also help you weed out any franchisees that might not be a good fit.
  2. What will keep me motivated? Owning a business is a long-game strategy. As explained in this video from Adam Atler, focusing on long-term goals means you spend the majority of your time in a failure state. It can be a hollow and unrewarding process for some, and even when a goal is met, it can feel anti-climactic. Instead of communicating the long-term goal of what a franchisee can achieve, focus on selling the system you have and the rewards that come from buying into and participating in that system on a day-to-day basis. This will help potential franchisees see what will motivate them all the way through to their exit strategy.
  3. What kind of impact will I have on my community? This is an often overlooked aspect of franchising. Just because someone wants to buy into a nationally recognized brand doesn’t mean they’re ignoring the impact their business can have on the community they serve. They are ultimately still a small business that can positively impact their community. Communicate to them how this is possible, and you’ll connect with them on a level that other brands won’t touch.

If you’re looking for successful tactics to implement these three communication strategies and sell more franchises, give us a call at 865.977.1973.

JD Sizemore, Account Supervisor

This post was written by on August 11, 2017


Health Information Technology, Do You Need Public Relations?

In the highly regulated and rapidly growing field of health information technology, public relations is no longer an option; it is a necessity. Every health IT company wants to be at the top of the decision makers’ minds when the question arises as to which software or solution they want to select for their hospital, medical group or private practitioner’s office. A specialized Heath IT public relations agency like Ripley PR, can devise a strategy to position your company at the top and keep you there.

Positive media coverage

A specialized public relations agency knows how to reach your target audience, by using the best markets and trade publications. Ripley PR can use client testimonials or case studies to position your company as the expert in the field and gain third-party media coverage. A third party endorsement of your brand can drive positive, credible coverage for your business, and ultimately add to your lead generation funnel.

Reputation Management

PR agencies can monitor and respond to poor reviews by showcasing the positive aspects of your business. This strategy will not make negative reviews disappear entirely, but it can offer a greater emphasis on the positive qualities of your business to help drive more positive results. Also, a public relations partner like Ripley PR can also assist your business in the event there is a crisis related to your brand by creating strategies for timely responses during a crisis.

Awareness

Writing and pitching press releases about new projects, clients and executive hires, as well as writing blogs with relevant industry content, and creating social media posts that position you as industry experts are all examples of how PR can help.

It is important to select a public relations agency that specializes in health IT and understands the problems and challenges your audience is trying to solve. A specialized agency is knowledgeable of the legislation and regulations that guide the health IT industry. The Knoxville-based health IT public relations agency professionals at Ripley PR are happy to assist you.

 

Jennifer Rice, Senior Brand Manager

This post was written by on August 7, 2017


Blogs help build business

Top blogging topics for your construction business

The construction industry brings a lot of different kinds of businesses into the fold. Your company may build things, supply materials, provide technology or even design solutions. Whatever the case, the right kind of strategy for the blog page of your website can help build your construction business. A construction public relations agency can help make your company grow.

Here are a few ways a PR agency with great writers can help your business build momentum with effective blog topics:

  • Feature projects – Your construction business is always involved in successful and oftentimes visible projects. A project feature blog should highlight those items and issues where your company made the difference between just another building and potentially an iconic structure in the community. You may also decide to write it in the form of a case study. And don’t forget to tag your partners involved in the project; they’ll appreciate the shout out.
  • Offer tips for the pros – If you want to be seen as a leader in your industry and in the community, offer tips on how to be better at what you do. Even though your competitors will probably see and read the blog, don’t worry. You had the idea first. By blogging about it, you automatically become a thought leader in your business community.
  • Highlight your leadership – Blogging about changes in leadership, promotions, professional certifications and community involvement serves to build your customers’ and clients’ confidence in everything you do. It’s not bragging if it’s true.

If you want your business to grow, then a construction public relations agency with the talent and expertise to get you there is what you need. Let PR help your construction business reach for the sky.

If any of the above resonates with you and your business, we at Ripley PR would love to talk with you. Not only are we a construction public relations agency, we know we can deliver blog content that helps you grow.

John Cherry, Senior Brand Manager

This post was written by on August 3, 2017


We all scream for non-dairy ice cream

As more and more people are shifting to a plant-based lifestyle, the demand for dairy-free, vegan certified frozen desserts is a perfect niche market opportunity for traditional ice cream distributors. Big brands have listened to consumers and the innovation of dairy-free options are jumping into the market faster than ever before. Ben & Jerry’s currently has seven flavors of dairy-free ice cream on supermarket shelves. Haagen Daaz, Breyers and other brands also offer a flavored assortment of almond milk based, dairy-free ice cream in the frozen aisle.

Silk is one of the pioneers of non-dairy milk. The company started in 1978 with soymilk sold in the produce area, where temperatures were not ideal. But before long, the product migrated over to the refrigerated case right next to dairy milk. There are several early adopters who have provided vegan alternatives for whipped topping, coffee creamer, yogurt, coconut milk, and soymilk for years.

The vegan movement has shown explosive growth and public relations is playing a huge role on how companies are bringing product to market. The demand for non-dairy, plant-based milk market is set to reach $21.6 billion worldwide by 2022. Effective public relations can create highly shareable content for your digital marketing platforms.

Ripley PR has been closely monitoring the latest market trends for all plant-based products and can provide you with the necessary guidance in your niche. Whether you are new to the public eye and are looking to achieve brand awareness and growth or you are an industry leader planning to launch a new product or sharpen up your media presence, we want to work with you.

Creating a buzz for your brand is important and we are able to pitch your story to media outlets far beyond just traditional communication outlets. We offer a wide variety of communications services to meet your specific needs. Contact Ripley PR today; email Heather Ripley at hripley@ripleypr.com or call us at 865-977-1973.

Heather Ripley, Founder/CEO

This post was written by on August 2, 2017


Reporters won’t swing at bad pitches

Respect, context and personability are key to good media relations

We are able to draw on the experience of several professional journalists here at Ripley PR, a Knoxville-area agency representing global clients in franchise, home services, construction and manufacturing. Their combined reporting and editing experience approaches 90 years (but don’t tell them that). They offer our brand managers and clients professional insight into a rapidly changing media landscape.

Building rapport with journalists in your market is key to public-relations campaigns. It’s also easy to poison the well with unproductive exchanges that amount to little more than a waste of everyone’s time.

Here are some examples of how to build relationships with reporters, whose time becomes more valuable every passing day as traditional newsrooms continue to atrophy:

-Pitch carefully. Sometimes pitches are obvious, like announcing a new CEO of a major local company, or updating progress on a major area construction project. Make sure you ensure an approach that makes the information you are sharing relevant to the reporter or editor.

-Share success. Make sure you link back to a reporter’s work, and thank her for her time and story. Clicks are increasingly valuable to a reporter and their evaluations.

-Know their beats. It can be frustrating for a reporter or editor to receive pitches or releases on topics outside their wheelhouse. Don’t send a product release to a political reporter.

-Make it personal. Grab a coffee or have a quick lunch with local reporters, especially the ones whose beats cover your public relations territory. If they can put a face to an email or voicemail, the better chance they’ll pick up your story or swing at a pitch.

Build rapport and get those pitches right, or you and your clients will go down on strikes.

Ripley PR can help you fine-tune your relationship with media, or put our professionals to work for you.

Thomas Fraser, Senior Content Specialist

This post was written by on August 1, 2017


Plant-based products on the rise: Your messaging matters more than ever

Demand for plant based, or vegan, products is on the rise, and not a minute too soon. Studies conducted by many reputable organizations, including the American Heart Association, American Institute for Cancer Research, and World Health Organization, among others have found that not only are dairy and meat bad for your health, the production is bad for the planet too. In addition to the health and environmental costs, sustained campaigns from animal rights groups showing cruel treatment have also made at least 7.5 million Americans realize the moral cost of consuming meat and dairy. As a result, more industries have joined hands with the food industry to develop a vegan product range.

On the other hand, traditional industries that develop and sell animal based products have also realized this headwind and, as a result, are starting to try and influence consumer behavior by offering convenience, variety, attractive prices and services – their clout and deep pockets don’t hurt, either. Couple this with existing intense competition within the niche (there has been a 60 percent rise in the number of global food and beverage launches using a vegetarian claim between 2011 and 2015) to gain the lion’s share, and you have the perfect recipe for a pincer move against the Vegan products segment.

Luckily, vegans are less price-sensitive than the average American, and they care more about products that are important to them and companies that they support. And on top of that, most vegans are frequently online, researching new vegan recipes and meat substitutes. What this means is that with a little careful planning, you can tap into your target segment, and ensure that your vegan product enjoys continued success. Consider these strategies to reach-out to your target audience:

Digital Marketing: As one leading vegan food company, Beyond Meat, found out, Social Media is one of the best platforms for you to connect with your audience, as vegans are always plugged-in. Instagram and Facebook are key channels for your brand to engage your audience in a meaningful conversation. Ask your followers to post their recipes and other photos and videos on your page, and show your appreciation by reposting top posts and rewarding them with promotional offers. This will also help you with your original content needs – most users will allow you to use their content if you ask them nicely.

Print ads in niche magazines: VegNews, Vegetarian Times, Chickpea, and Natural Health are only a few of the many publications catering to the Vegan audience; what separates these from others, however, is that these are fairly successful, which is saying a lot in a world that’s slowly slipping away from print media. A well-placed ad in any of these magazines will get you much needed mind-share. That said, remember that with today’s consumers, you can’t afford to write checks your brand can’t cash – in other words, be truthful.

No matter what medium you choose, it’s your messaging that matters most, and it should focus on three core tenets of the vegan lifestyle – concern for health, concern for the environment, and concern for animals. This means using more phrases like ‘vegan’, ‘vegan certified’, ‘vegan diet’, ‘organic’, and ‘not tested on animals’. If your messaging appropriately impresses upon your consumers that your brand cares for these values, you will secure a loyalty that will last a long time.

Want to know how to create a marketing strategy that perfectly blends online with print? Or need help with getting your messaging right? Contact Ripley PR to help you generate some public relations buzz around your vegan brand.

Heather Ripley, Founder/CEO

This post was written by on July 28, 2017


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