Professional Promotions


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Promotions Professionals can use to publicize a practice or business

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Professional Promotions

  1. 1. Professional Publicity Make The Telephone Ring & The Front Door Swing! Dr. Jim Humphries The Veterinary News Network
  2. 2. Clients!! You and Your Veterinary Hospital Local Seminars Volunteer Open House Sponsor TV Radio Print Media Web Site Press Promotion NON-Press Promotion There is something here for everyone!
  3. 3. “ Without promotion, something terrible happens...................NOTHING!!” P.T. Barnum <ul><li>Overcome the fear of promotions and publicity </li></ul><ul><li>In the 70’s and 80’s Advertising was a dirty word! </li></ul><ul><li>Instead we reluctantly called it “Marketing”. </li></ul><ul><li>Now we have agencies, consultants and seminars to </li></ul><ul><li>teach us how to do it! </li></ul><ul><li>What you are really doing is “Public Awareness”. Make </li></ul><ul><li>others aware of the wonderful things you do, and you </li></ul><ul><li>are generating publicity and promoting your life’s pursuit. </li></ul><ul><li>Few people like to “blow their own horn” – especially </li></ul><ul><li>professionals and scientists. </li></ul><ul><li>You are passionate, enthusiastic about what you do, </li></ul><ul><li>why aren’t you telling the world about it? </li></ul>
  4. 4. Publicity: The act of delivering information with news value as a means of gaining public attention or support. Definitions: Promotion: To contribute to the growth and advancement of a business; the act of encouraging a trial or persuading an action. Public Relations : The art of developing reciprocal understanding and good will between a business and the public.
  5. 5. <ul><li>Publicity is often a No Cost event. </li></ul><ul><li>Promotes Credibility / Celebrity </li></ul><ul><li>Promotes Community Involvement </li></ul><ul><li>Appears unbiased, expert advice </li></ul><ul><li>Encourages a Trial (then let your client service and staff take the lead!) </li></ul>Benefits of Publicity and Promotions:
  6. 6. Some Very, Very Basic Marketing Facts: Should be 3-6% of Practice Revenue 15 – 30K for 500,000 gross Can drop to 1-3% when established 5 – 15K The Average Practice spends ½% Usually on Yellow Pages = commonly a waste of $ Web, effective ads, strategic partnerships, mix with publicity A consumer needs SEVEN exposures for a message to sink in! How much does SEVEN exposures in multiple avenues of advertising cost? Marketing Basics for Veterinarians Dr. Lowell Ackerman - 2002
  7. 7. The SIX Biggest Mistakes in Marketing Veterinary Services <ul><li>Discounts (Price Promotion) </li></ul><ul><li>Prisoner’s Dilemma! </li></ul><ul><li>2. Assuming clients will find out about you anyway </li></ul><ul><li>3. Turning over the effort to an ad agency </li></ul><ul><li>4. Not allowing STAFF to have a role </li></ul><ul><li>5. Spending money blindly on marketing without a plan/ direction or tracking! </li></ul><ul><li>6. Ignoring Publicity!! </li></ul>
  8. 8. Therefore: Publicity and Promotion <ul><li>If ½% was spend here there would be dramatic Publicity and Consumer Awareness </li></ul><ul><li>Soon Publicity gains a life of it’s own and becomes NO Cost </li></ul><ul><li>Promotes Credibility / Celebrity </li></ul><ul><li>Promotes Community Involvement </li></ul><ul><li>Appears unbiased, expert advice </li></ul><ul><li>Encourages a Trial (then let your client service and staff take the lead!) </li></ul>
  9. 9. Market Mix Of Veterinary Hospitals Leaders = 40% Challengers = 30% Unique Niche = 10% Followers = 20% 40 30 10 20 % Who Needs Publicity? Leaders – to maintain leadership Challengers – to become a leader! That’s 70 – 80% Marketing Basics for Veterinarians Dr. Lowell Ackerman - 2002
  10. 10. 24 Professional Publicity Ideas
  11. 11. 1) Pick a good name and logo: The Good, The Bad and The UGLY….
  12. 13. The Winners!!
  13. 14. 2) Register your web site domain name ,
  14. 15. 3) Promotional items: search engine: promotional products
  15. 16. 4) Submit articles: or become local columnist
  16. 17. What Makes A Good Story : <ul><li>Something that is happening NOW </li></ul><ul><li>A seasonal event </li></ul><ul><li>An unusual case </li></ul><ul><li>The results of a new survey </li></ul><ul><li>The local angle on national news </li></ul><ul><li>A new product or service that will benefit people </li></ul><ul><li>“ How to” stories that help people accomplish </li></ul><ul><li>something </li></ul><ul><li>Things that make people’s lives easier </li></ul><ul><li>Local happenings </li></ul><ul><li>Good causes </li></ul><ul><li>Controversial issues </li></ul><ul><li>Government approval of something new </li></ul>RIDNKT
  17. 18. What Makes A Good Story: Examples For News : (Controversy is GOOD!) Heartworm? Should Pit Bulls Be Banned? Mad Cow Disease? Guardianship? Fleas and Ticks? West Nile Virus? Over-Vaccination Issue? Anthrax? Frostbite? FIV Vaccine? Weird Case? Geriatrics? Alternative Medicines? Heart Disease? Deadly Bugs? Book? Local Event? Survey or Poll of Clients? Outbreak?
  18. 19. How to become a columnist: 1. Decide which publication you will target Main paper, neighborhood weekly, specialty, business 2. Establish your position as an expert You are an expert in animal health 3. Decide which style you will use Ask The Expert Insider’s View Humor Behind The Scenes Folksy Fun Good News How To Articles 4. Don’t be afraid to start small
  19. 20. How to become a columnist: 5. Be unique Being unique and local may get you above a syndicated name. 6. Approach the editor Get an appointment, 30 second pitch, samples of your work, use column style with a picture, include press kit, and follow-up in a few days. 7. What If They Say NO! Try a back door with a specialty reporter Write anyway and use your work in many ways: seminars, “how-to”, on your web site, smaller papers
  20. 21. <ul><li>8. What If They Say YES! What Now? </li></ul><ul><li>Prepare a list of about 25 columns you want to do </li></ul><ul><li>Submit about 10 columns up front – don’t chase deadlines </li></ul><ul><li>Call friends, clients and play reporter – doors open up </li></ul><ul><li>These quotes, experts, sources make you look more like a reporter </li></ul><ul><li>Remember you are building a body of work that will be used in many different ways </li></ul><ul><li>Begin to read other columnists and develop your style </li></ul><ul><li>Learn to become a bit controversial or edgy – you are a columnist (not a news reporter) and you can have an opinion. </li></ul>How to become a columnist:
  21. 22. 5) Sponsor activities : church, little league, athletic club
  22. 23. The results of Safe Harbor Animal Rescue's First Annual Telethon were spectacular!   The July 13th telethon was sponsored by News Channel 5, Roca & Sharpe Attorneys-at-Law, Petsmart and the Palm Beach Zoo.  News Channel 5 presented two hours of animal magnetism as Safe Harbor, Palm Beach County's not-for-profit no-kill facility kicked off its capital fundraising campaign.  6) Hold an event: health screenings, vaccination clinics, open house, dog walks (Walk for Life), scoop the poop campaign, service dog awareness campaign, first aid event, Pet-A-Thon with local shelter and>
  23. 24. 7) Hold Local Community Seminars: Coordinate with local shelters, pet stores, feed stores Bring in other experts Develop a 1-hour, half day, or full day event Hold seminar as a community service event <ul><li>Let the media know and invite them to cover it. </li></ul><ul><li>“ How-to” break outs </li></ul><ul><li>Sample give away </li></ul><ul><li>Premium food </li></ul><ul><li>Dental care </li></ul><ul><li>Bathing demos </li></ul><ul><li>First aid demos </li></ul><ul><li>Tie in with up-coming season </li></ul>
  24. 25. <ul><li>8) Produce your own Media Kits : </li></ul><ul><li>News release </li></ul><ul><li>Photo and bio </li></ul><ul><li>Letters of praise and testimonials </li></ul><ul><li>Company history </li></ul><ul><li>Letter from prior media appearances </li></ul><ul><li>Potential interview questions </li></ul><ul><li>Any published articles </li></ul><ul><li>Your business card </li></ul><ul><li>Brochure, sample, radio tape, promotional item </li></ul>
  25. 26. <ul><li>9) Write “How-To” Articles and Give Them Away: </li></ul><ul><li>Easy and effective </li></ul><ul><li>Send to local papers, give away at events and local shops </li></ul><ul><li>Have staff help! </li></ul><ul><li>Use in your hospital </li></ul><ul><li>Always include all contact information </li></ul><ul><li>10) Write a series of “Tip-Sheets” and Give Them Away: </li></ul><ul><li>Tip-sheets are easy, to the point, single sheets you can write in minutes </li></ul><ul><li>They are chocked full of information </li></ul><ul><li>5-12 facts telling readers how to do something </li></ul><ul><li>Media loves tip-sheets (run-down of a story) </li></ul><ul><li>Perfect for your web site content </li></ul>
  26. 27. <ul><li>11) Get your Web Site </li></ul><ul><li>Underway : </li></ul><ul><li>87% of Americans have Internet access </li></ul><ul><li>Develop a press room; media kit, news releases, past news stories </li></ul><ul><li>Get professional help! </li></ul><ul><li>Work with a web master to get your site seen </li></ul><ul><li>Develop content based on your “how-to” and “tip-sheets”. </li></ul><ul><li>Have content become a resource for local media </li></ul>
  27. 28. <ul><li>12) Volunteer Your Services: </li></ul><ul><li>Fosters community good will </li></ul><ul><li>Meet people and develop relationships; </li></ul><ul><li>share ideas and contacts </li></ul><ul><li>City or private animal shelter </li></ul><ul><li>Therapeutic Riding Centers </li></ul><ul><li>Does not have to be animal oriented </li></ul>
  28. 29. <ul><li>13) Start A Monthly Newsletter: </li></ul><ul><li>Fun, informative, useful </li></ul><ul><li>Print or on-line, newsletters are usually very well read </li></ul><ul><li>Have staff help </li></ul><ul><li>Use lots of pictures </li></ul><ul><li>News – Breaking News – News Bulletin </li></ul><ul><li>Email!!! (Collect client email addresses) </li></ul><ul><li>Include the media in mailing list </li></ul><ul><li>Short case studies about important or interesting cases </li></ul>
  29. 30. <ul><li>14) Start A Hall Of Fame </li></ul><ul><li>Easy and draws much media attention </li></ul><ul><li>Induct prominent members of the animal health community </li></ul><ul><li>Each year you add members </li></ul><ul><li>Send out press releases each year </li></ul><ul><li>16) Create an Index </li></ul><ul><li>The Index Of Pet Health – results of your observations in community </li></ul><ul><li>The Pet Stress Index – assessment of pets in artificial environments </li></ul><ul><li>Send out press release with education points </li></ul><ul><li>15) Make a list </li></ul><ul><li>Blackwell’s “Worst Dressed List” </li></ul><ul><li>Most annoying people of the year… </li></ul><ul><li>Smartest Pet List </li></ul><ul><li>The Best, The Worst, The Most….the media loves it </li></ul><ul><li>Not news, just entertainment, but good counter-point for news </li></ul><ul><li>Most pet friendly cities in the United States </li></ul>
  30. 31. <ul><li>17) Create A Quiz: </li></ul><ul><li>Quizzes are evergreen </li></ul><ul><li>They invite participation with the audience </li></ul><ul><li>They fit well in short media times </li></ul><ul><li>They can easily be “cut to fit” in limited </li></ul><ul><li>print space </li></ul>Examples: What’s your pet’s personality? Can you think like a cat? Are you a cat or a dog person? What kind of cat would you be? Are you Vet Smart? Are you the best pet parent? <ul><li>18) Give Free Pet Classes: </li></ul><ul><li>Involve Staff – make it very fun </li></ul><ul><li>Helpful for all pet owners </li></ul><ul><li>Invite the press – don’t do this in a vacuum </li></ul><ul><li>Give hospital tour, handouts, freebies, lots of advice </li></ul>
  31. 32. <ul><li>19) Use Corporate Promotions & Personalize Them: </li></ul><ul><li>Materials from the industry are professionally done and known to work </li></ul><ul><li>Take all the freebies the company will give you! </li></ul><ul><li>Personalize their material and use it for your clients and your media </li></ul><ul><li>Charts, graphics, press releases, give-aways - all have value to you </li></ul><ul><li>May tie in to a national campaign or advertising run </li></ul><ul><li>Could lead to your “local angle” on the national story </li></ul><ul><li>Use a case report about the subject and write your own press release and approach the media. You look up-to-date and you have a current news/consumer story. </li></ul>
  32. 33. <ul><li>20) Begin Calling The Media </li></ul><ul><li>By now your community activity has established you as credible </li></ul><ul><li>Media should know you from news releases and email newsletter </li></ul><ul><li>Follow the local news and see who is likely reporter for your story </li></ul><ul><li>Call and pitch them quickly and offer to follow-up with </li></ul><ul><li>email of facts </li></ul><ul><li>WIFMA – what’s in it for my audience? </li></ul><ul><li>Adapt your story to the news of the day! </li></ul><ul><li>Whether it works or not you are building relationships with media </li></ul><ul><li>Remember, You ARE the local expert and media loves that </li></ul>
  33. 34. Contacting The Media <ul><li>Define your audience, then create a list of media that reaches them. </li></ul><ul><li>Do your homework and find out the right person to call. Build a database and include email addresses as well. </li></ul><ul><li>Find out when is the best time to call. Deadlines, on the air, promo time, staff meetings. </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t be a pest – know how much is right. </li></ul>
  34. 35. <ul><li>If calling, remember they are very busy and you need to get to the point quickly – 10 seconds! </li></ul><ul><li>If they like the sound of your story idea, they will give you more time. </li></ul><ul><li>Create a one-page guide of your story and have it in front of you when pitching. </li></ul><ul><li>Remember you are building a relationship here and a “no” only means no for now. </li></ul><ul><li>Be ready to send support info, discuss visuals, give back up data and how the story affects local viewers, listeners and readers. </li></ul>Contacting The Media
  35. 36. Connecting With Reporters 1. Know the media you are calling “ I love your show”, be a real consumer 2. Build and maintain a fresh media list This takes time, staff can help, know their reporting 3. Know when and how to contact them Fax, phone, email. Soon after a show is good 4. Get focused Don’t wing a pitch. Prepare and be concise. 5. Think headlines Save the details for later. Remember, listener, viewer and reader service!!
  36. 37. Connecting With Reporters 6. Use email carefully It works well, just use it correctly 7. Remind them who you are They hear from hundreds a day – remind them 8. Stay in tune with your reporter base Get something newsworthy to them every month 9. Do what you tell them Follow through on all promises 10. Good Follow-up Each one is a bit different as to how much is too much Some like to be reminded. Try to get them on the phone. Leave one message then no more. Try different times.
  37. 38. 21) Develop your own Cable TV Show <ul><li>Not difficult </li></ul><ul><li>No cost to you </li></ul><ul><li>Not many viewers </li></ul><ul><li>May build into another position </li></ul><ul><li>May gain good focused audience </li></ul><ul><li>Does take time to plan/prepare </li></ul><ul><li>Good way to involve community animal health concerns </li></ul><ul><li>Builds tape for future progression </li></ul><ul><li>Can invite clients on with unusual cases </li></ul><ul><li>Many different outlets – can support many different veterinarians around the state </li></ul>
  38. 39. 22) Get on State VMA PR Committee <ul><li>Get press referrals </li></ul><ul><li>Helps state association </li></ul><ul><li>Gets your name in the press </li></ul><ul><li>Gets you media training and experience </li></ul><ul><li>Gets you more comfortable with media </li></ul><ul><li>Gets you access to media for other PR </li></ul><ul><li>Adds to your credibility with clients and the Press </li></ul>
  39. 40. <ul><li>23) Get To Know Your Peers </li></ul><ul><li>Takes time but has great benefits </li></ul><ul><li>Special events, Chamber of Commerce, </li></ul><ul><li>trade shows, club meetings </li></ul><ul><li>Potential clients and referral sources </li></ul><ul><li>Media is often present </li></ul><ul><li>Many professionals find this “softer” approach more appealing </li></ul><ul><li>Have a pocket full of business cards! </li></ul><ul><li>Attend regularly </li></ul>
  40. 41. <ul><li>24) Build Your PR Network </li></ul><ul><li>When you are your own PR department, it can’t have a very large reach and without a network, you are limited by the “touch” principle </li></ul><ul><li>Therefore, build a network </li></ul><ul><li>Your family, staff should always carry cards and brochures </li></ul><ul><li>Leave cards and brochures with dentist, doctor, accountant, lawyer, web site manager, pastor, insurance agent and anyone you do business with. These professionals understand and admire your skills of self-promotion. Offer to do the same for them! Referrals bring in class A clients. </li></ul><ul><li>Include the members of the media. They will see you as a leader and will call on you when a story needs your expert input. </li></ul>
  41. 42. <ul><li>25) Social Media Networking </li></ul><ul><li>43% of all your clients have a social media profile. </li></ul><ul><li>71% of those have 2+ </li></ul><ul><li>Facebook </li></ul><ul><li>LinkedIn </li></ul><ul><li>Twitter </li></ul><ul><li>MySpace </li></ul><ul><li>Blogging </li></ul><ul><li>Forums ( ) </li></ul>
  42. 43. The TEN Things NOT To Do With The Media: 1. Don’t be a pest Fine line, always have a new reason to call 2. Don’t lie or mis-represent your story Many people exaggerate to get on – this is hated by news people 3. Don’t waste their time No chit-chat, think headlines! Guess What, Did You Hear! 4. Don’t send the media too much stuff Concise media kit, press release, picture, contact info 5. Don’t call radio or TV people right before or during a show ½ to 1 hour after a show, or ask them best time
  43. 44. The TEN Things NOT To Do With The Media: 6. Don’t pitch stories that lack focus or are too commercial Your first job is to meet their needs - news 7. Don’t take offense when they reject Many reasons, simply try again with good stories 8. Don’t forget to follow-up email, fax, kits with more info, and gentle reminders! 9. Don’t go over their heads Work with their “uniqueness” or try another show 10. Don’t change who you are Be the person on the air they heard or saw in the newsroom. They are the gatekeepers! Make them friends.
  44. 45. American Society of Veterinary Journalists
  45. 46. The New Media Model: A national network of specialty news contributors who belong to an organization that organizes, empowers, equips and motivates these “reporters” to appear in local news outlets and other new media communications media.
  46. 47.
  47. 48. Contact Information: Dr. Jim Humphries [email_address] 719-495-2100