May 19, 2020

How to get publicity for your product

public relations
expert advice
EMSI Public Relations
Marsha Friedman
Bizclik Editor
4 min
How to get publicity for your product

The October edition of the Business Review USA is now live!

By: Marsha Friedman

Many entrepreneurs with a new product to promote have a hard time envisioning helpful publicity beyond news stories about how fabulous their Great New Thing is.

While that kind of coverage is like hitting the jackpot, it’s not easy to get and it’s impossible to sustain. And sustenance is crucial: to stand out in a crowded marketplace, you’ve got to stay in front of your audience.

Entrepreneurs who aren’t familiar with marketing strategies turn to advertising because they think it’s their only choice. Not only are they wrong, they’re missing out on all the benefits that  advertising doesn’t offer. Being quoted as an authority in the press or interviewed by a radio or TV talk show host carries with it the implied endorsement of the mass media. It helps to build your brand and your company’s brand as credible, helpful and knowledgeable – trustworthy.

As I read recently in a great article in Forbes, “People don’t have relationships with products, they are loyal to brands.”

So, how do you get journalists and talk show hosts to tell people how incredibly awesome your brand and product are?

You don’t.

Publicity is about getting visibility, credibility and exposure – it’s not about selling. You gain publicity by looking for ways you can provide useful, helpful content that is, ideally, tied to something in the news.

I’ll share some recent real-life examples of how we got publicity for some of our clients with products, which should help get you thinking about your own possibilities:

A company that emphasizes design in its production of innovative containers for plants wanted exposure in print publications. The CEO hoped those publications would also run photos of his eye-catching containers.

Earlier this summer, knowing that many monthly and seasonal magazines were already starting on their fall editions, we wrote a fall color trends article quoting the CEO. The article also offered his tips for creating dramatic displays of color using container plants, subtly mentioning his own products by way of example.

The article got picked up by a number of magazines – from trades to home décor, many of which included photographs of the containers.

A dentist who specializes in diagnosing and treating halitosis has developed a number of products to address that problem. We’ve helped him stay in front of audiences for years, with radio and TV talk segment angles ranging from “National Fresh Breath Day” to “How Do You Tell Dad He Has Dog Breath?” (for Father’s Day) to “Dentist Says Miley Cyrus Should Keep Her Tongue in Her Mouth” (after her recent MTV awards show performance).

For all of these segments, the dentist is named, his website publicized, and occasionally, one of his products is mentioned.

A recent product that we all had fun with was a gizmo that reminds guys to put the toilet seat down. It’s done with humor but the entrepreneur says it actually trains most offenders within three weeks.

Recognizing that the toilet seat is at the center of many a spousal tug-of-war, we offered up our client to talk about the “age-old gender power struggle” for a segment called “What’s Up with the Toilet Seat Debate?” Since that was the inspiration for his creation, he had funny stories to share as well as some interesting insights about the ups and downs (so to speak) of married life.

Talk show hosts recognized the potential for a lively and entertaining conversation and snapped him up.

If you want valuable publicity for your business or product, remember, you need to offer something valuable in return. For TV and radio talk shows, that’s an informative and interesting interview on a related topic. The host will mention your company and website, probably more than once, and you can casually slip some mentions as well.

In print, experts are usually identified by their claim to fame, so you may be quoted as Joe Smith, inventor of the Bottomless Coffee Mug, and your website included. Write an article for a publication and it will likely include a bio about you.

All of this will provide more visibility and credibility for you and your product while building a brand consumers can fall in love with.

About Marsha Friedman

Marsha Friedman is a 23-year veteran of the public relations industry. She is the CEO of EMSI Public Relations (www.emsincorporated.com), a national firm that provides PR strategy and publicity services to businesses, professional firms, entertainers and authors. Marsha is the author of Celebritize Yourself and she can also be heard weekly on her Blog Talk Radio Show, EMSI’s PR Insider every Thursday at 3:00 PM EST. Follow her on Twitter: @marshafriedman.

 

 

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May 14, 2021

Dark Wolf: accelerating security for USAF

U.S Air Force
Dark Wolf Solutions
Paddy Smith
2 min
Dark Wolf Solutions is small and agile, its partnership with the US Air Force is helping to deliver critical security faster and better than ever before

As a small company whose biggest customers are the Department of Defense and the Intelligence Community, Dark Wolf Solutions (Dark Wolf) is a triple-threat, specializing in Cybersecurity, Software and DevOps, and Management Solutions. Dark Wolf secures and tests cloud platforms, develops and deploys applications, and offers consultancy services performing system engineering, system integration, and mission support.

The break for Dark Wolf came when the Department of Defense decided to explore software factories. Rick Tossavainen, Dark Wolf’s CEO, thinks it was an inspired path for the DoD to take. “It was a really great decision,” he says, “Let’s pull our people together as part of this digital transformation and recreate what Silicon Valley startup firms typically have. Let’s get into commercial facilities where we have open windows and big whiteboards and just promote ideation and collaboration. And it creates this collaborative environment where people start creating things much more rapidly than before.”

It has been, Tossavainen says, “amazing to watch” and has energized the Federal Contracting Sector with an influx of new talent and improved working environments that foster creativity and innovative ways of approaching traditional problems.

“We originally started working with the US Air Force about three years ago. The problem was at the time you could develop all the software you wanted but you couldn’t get it into production – you had to go through the traditional assessment and authorization process. I talked to Lauren Knausenberger and she told me about Kessel Run and what eventually came out of this was the DoD’s first continuous ATO [Authority To Operate].”

The secret to Dark Wolf’s success – and its partnerships with USAF and Space Force – lies in a client-first attitude. “We’re not looking to maximise revenue,” Tossavainen explains. “We tell all of our employees, if you’re ever faced with an issue and you don’t know how to resolve it, and one solution is better for the customer and the second is better for Dark Wolf, you always do number one. We’ve just got to take care of our customers, and I look for other partners that want to do that. And let’s work together so that we can bring them the best answer we can.”

Rapid releases and constant evolution of software are common themes among USAF’s partners. Like many firms operating in the commercial and public sector spaces, Dark Wolf leads with a DevSecOps approach.

“Failure is tolerated,” says Tossavainen. “If it’s not going the right way in three months, let’s adjust. Let’s rapidly change course. And you can tell really quickly if something’s going to be successful or not, because they’re doing deployments multiple times a day – to the customer.”

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