sign up

Get a free fashion PR plan template and special offers exclusive to insiders!

Fashion PR Agency News

PR Agency News: BPMPR, Ruby Press, 5WPR

Beautiful Planning Marketing & PR will represent online beauty retailer Beauteque, a global e-commerce site that offers high-quality Korean/East Asian cosmetics and skincare at affordable prices.

Oakland-based, boutique lifestyle PR agency Ruby Press celebrates 15 years in 2016. First up, a fresh new look on the web. Learn more about founder Melissa Davis on PR Couture!

5W Public Relations is now AOR for Canadian luxury outerwear and accessories brand nobis. 5WPR plans to implement an integrated public relations strategy that will increase exposure among consumers and build brand recognition.

Photo Credit: PHOMONA

How to launch a new brand using PR and Marketing

How to Gain Tons of Media Attention for a New Brand

Launching a new business or product is the biggest opportunity for media coverage and brand buzz in the lifespan of your business. Media and consumers are always eager to learn what is new and fresh and by capitalizing on the public’s desire to discover the latest new business or product you can ensure lasting success.

The launch can be divided into three phases: pre-launch, launch period and launch date.

Below find top tips for each phase that will help you maximize your launch potential. After all, you only launch once!

Pre-Launch Phase

The pre-launch period is a really critical time in the launch process and can be nerve wracking because it is the period when money is being spent but revenue is not being generated. However, but investing strategically in pre-launch activities can translate into a big payoff. The materials and story you develop pre-launch will set the stage for how both the media and your ideal customers perceive and respond to your business.

Assuming you are clear about your target audience and have done the appropriate research, there are three key things that must be in top shape before your public launch:

Digital Presence: Having a strong professional website and social media accounts that match your brand’s image and essence is critical to a successful launch. Social media is a powerful tool for discovery, and your website is the first place that consumers, editors and even buyers will look when they hear about your product and are intrigued.

You should plan to launch your social media channels during the pre-launch period. Having strong images and copy for social media channels as well as a clear strategy for each platform will set the stage for initial growth and engagement. Active social media activity acts as a sort of proof of concept for target media and influencers who are experiencing your company for the first time.

Real life example: Recently we had a bridal client launch a ready to wear collection, but they never updated their website to reflect the brand extension. Feedback from numerous editors let us know they weren’t interested in covering the launch because they felt the brand was just a “bridal” brand. This is a classic example of missing out on a huge media opportunity by not having a digital presence that accurately reflects the brand story.

Photography:  We’ve all heard that “a picture is worth a thousand words,” but a picture is also worth a thousand press hits, a thousand orders and a thousand successful launches. Having strong images for your website, lookbooks or other collateral material is probably the most important element to a successful launch. However, this is also an area where businesses skimp.  If you are launching a product, you simply must have beautiful and high quality lifestyle, catalogue and product images ready to go.

Key Messages:What are the elements of your brand's aesthetic, competitive advantage, features and benefits as well as values that are most important to highlight from the beginning. From homepage copy to social media bios, introductory pitches to the media and beyond, it's important to clarify brand language, messaging and sound-bites before media outreach begins.

Press Materials:Media outreach is one of the most important activities you will carry out during the launch period. Make sure you have company information, media kits, lookbooks and high resolution images easily accessible to media outlets that show interest in covering your launch. Have everything easily accessible in a file-sharing folder or password-protected section of your website. Make sure your images, including logos and headshots are 300 DPI or greater. If you are hoping for digital coverage, offering images in low-res can be a nice touch.

Both the materials and easy access improve your changes that media will cover your launch because you providing the tools they need to inform their audience about your product.

Launch Period

The Launch period typically begins anywhere from 6 months to 6 weeks before the product or service actually becomes available.  This is your opportunity to introduce your product or service to the media and secure press that will publish near to the actual launch date.

During the launch period, you want to make sure the following areas have been developed fully:

Direct Brand Access:In the pre-launch phase, your goal is to set the brand foundation, while the launch phase is all about building anticipation and excitement for the brand. When developing a launch period media strategy consider how you can best introduce key media and influencers to your brand in a way that makes a lasting impact. You may decide to offer an exclusives to a larger outlet, scheduling desksides or host a media preview.

Real life example: Last year we assisted a contemporary designer with the launch of her collection and her pieces were simply too expensive to gift editors. Instead, we decided to have custom cookies created that mimicked her designs, and sent those to key editors to capture their attention and announce the launch. This resulted in coverage of the launch from a few major media outlets.

Active Pitching: It's important to schedule your media outreach according to type of media and outlet. Print first, with digital following closer to the actual launch date. You may choose to space out news or information over time (just look at how media cover upcoming Target designer collaborations to see this media seeding in action), or send out your announcement closer to the actual launch date. Make sure to clearly list pricing details, website, addresses, social media handles and other pertinent information in your outreach.

Official Launch

The Launch Date is the date that your product or service will become available to the public. It's the date you'll tease throughout the launch period, and include on a launch release. It could mark the day that a collection is available at a brick and mortar location or via an e-commerce site, or the day app is available for download.

Launch Event: The official launch date is a great opportunity to make a big splash. You may hold a launch party that includes friends, family, supporters, media and influencers.  An intimate media brunch or virtual launch can act as the big to-do or as supplements to a party.

Social Media Blitz: Ecommerce, mobile or digital brands especially should consider how to maximize site traffic, downloads and signups on the launch date.  You may want to consider a social media campaign where you have influencers announce your launch on social media platforms. If you can coordinate simultaneous time or date posts, you can maximize impact. You may also want to consider having influencers host a contest on social media to garner followers and spread the word about your launch.

Real life example: We implemented a celebrity and influencer seeding program for a recent launch of a brand that led to rapid growth on Instagram. We went from nothing to more than 10,000 organic followers in less than three months.

Marketing: Your content strategy across social media and early press coverage will drive interest and awareness for your brand. Once a target consumer has enough interest to type the brand name into Google, or click a social media link, it's crucial to scoop up this interest by converting potential customers into email subscribers and early purchasers. Incentives, free gifts with purchase and exclusive content and access are all strong marketing strategies to have in play to take full advantage of this important time in brand-building.

Once your brand is officially launched, it's time to move into the post-launch period where you consistently develop timely, relevant story ideas for media, fun and engaging social media content and plan for future launches and program extensions.

Photo Credit: EvelynHill

A better way to land your first job in public relations A PR Couture Guest Post by Lindsey Walker

I’ve Graduated With My PR Degree, Now What?

Congratulations, you did it! Graduation has come and gone. You’ve celebrated (maybe a little too much) with your family and friends, and you've been applying for PR jobs every since. However, despite sending your resume out religiously and even landing a few interviews (that quite honestly you thought you nailed), you've have yet to get a job offer. So frustrating.

So, what’s an aspiring PR professional to do?

Well, you could cry and get depressed about life and tailspin into self-doubt and anxiety about whether or not a career in PR is even in the cards for you. But because you were likely attracted to public relations as a career because it requires hard work, a thick skin and creative problem solving, you know it is not in you to give up on your dream so quickly.

Here is what you do: carve out an afternoon of solitude and take yourself on a little career planning retreat. Grab a notebook or open up your laptop and brainstorm how you can reclaim inspiration and gain a clear direction on what you can do, right now, to change your story from bing-watching Netflix to gainfully employed.

Know this: You create your own opportunities

If might not feel like it right now, but you are in a very exciting time in your life where the future has yet to be written.  

So rather that waiting for job listing to appear, make an ideal company list and prepare to proactively reach out to at least twenty PR agencies and brands in your area of interest.  

Getting the job often comes down to being both a cultural fit for where you are applying, as well as having a specific set of skills that interplays well with those of the existing team. Your next task is to take what you know of each company and figure out what exactly about your experience is likely to be most helpful and most interesting to them. Secondly, really hone in on what it is about that company culture, history or product that calls out to your personally. Choose several skills and experiences for each of the companies on your ideal company list and write notes or bullet points as part of your research in a "why me" section. You'll use these notes later when crafting a letter of introduction (make sure to avoid these common cover letter mistakes).

Getting the job often comes down to being both a cultural fit for where you are applying, as well as having a specific set of skills that interplays well with those of the existing team.

Before reaching out to your company contact, ensure that your digital presence, including LinkedIn, social media accounts and Google search results are consistent, professional and up-to-date. Examine your resume and portfolio and give them a refresh (have a trusted friend give them a look and point out anything that is confusing, inconsistent or designed poorly).

Now it's time to ensure you are following each company through social media, and begin engaging with them where appropriate. Then, write a compelling pitch letter addressed by name to an ideal company contact (to make this easier, check out PR Couture's templates for job seekers).

You may choose to simply ask if there are any open positions, to ask for an informational interview, or to simply write a company love letter with a short PS about your career aspirations. Point is, you are taking ownership of your career direction and putting out feelers to get you closer to the job you want.

PS: Join PR Couture for Fashion PR Confidential  March 19-20 in NYC. Former attendees have gone on to land positions at Harper's Bazaar, Alice & Olivia and People's Revolution.

About Lindsey

Socially savvy with roots in the fashion & entertainment industries, Lindsey Walker is the CEO and Lead Publicist of PR Mentality. Her blossoming firm has its base in Atlanta, GA but, boasts clients worldwide. Championing likeminded people, Lindsey has a true passion for empowering entrepreneurs, creating a voice for them and packaging their message for target audiences through public relations. For Lindsey on Twitter and IG @LynnPRMentality

 

 

Photo Credit: JooJoobs.Etsy.com

Meet Crosby Noricks

Hi. I'm Crosby, Founder of PR Couture, Fashion Brand Strategist and PR Girl Mentor. I care about supporting and celebrating fashion publicists as well as helping companies connect with their audiences in more meaningful ways. Recently, iMedia included me in their annual list of 25 Internet Marketing Leaders and Innovators, along with people from Starbucks, Twitter and Volkswagon, which I think is pretty neat. Like Elle Woods, I am a Gemini-vegetarian (that's about where the similarities end). Let's connect: Check out my full bio, Brand Elixir sessions for brands or shoot me a note at crosby@prcouture.com.