Iliyana's Blog

Delivering Value Through Inbound PR Starts with Asking Questions

[fa icon="calendar'] 28-Nov-2017 09:00:00 / by Tamara Vlootman posted in Public Relations, Inbound PR

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This is a guest post by Tamara Vlootman.

Over the last few years, I've been focusing more and more on gaining insights - both about our clients and about the PR industry itself.

I chose this specialisation as a job role at my PR agency driven by the desire to help make brands be truly based on something real instead of just pushing some ‘added value’ to existing marketing fluff.

But this specialisation is also a source of frustration. More and more often, I get the feeling that we in the PR industry are not even close to reaching our full potential of being strategic advisors.

In my opinion, Inbound PR is not only about a different way of using technology. It’s about creating real and solid value in a world that increasingly screams for something authentic and honest - because the demand for creating real stories for more engaged, rather than just bigger audiences is rising. And the only way to add value is by spending focused time creating it, not by compromising with rushed pitches and press releases.

But Why the Itch to Stick with the Old?

Over the last month, after speaking to Stephen Waddington and Iliyana Stareva about PR and its future, something became even more clear to me.

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Storytelling 101: How to Tell Break Through Stories [Infographic]

[fa icon="calendar'] 24-Oct-2017 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Public Relations, Storytelling, Inbound Marketing, Inbound PR

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Did you know that messages delivered through a story can be up to 22 times more memorable than just facts

I'd say no wonder given that stories provoke emotions, refer to our own experiences (when planned and told well) and so engage our subconscious minds. 

In our information, channels and apps overload era, that's a pretty significant number for businesses to consider when they are trying to engage with consumers or any other stakeholder group. Good stories can clearly sell. 

A lot of companies jumped on the bandwagon of storytelling or should I say on content creation as we saw the benefits in terms of SEO and user engagement.

But as the mass of content grew bigger and our attention spans got shorter, that focus on quantity versus quality is not doing you a favour anymore. 

What businesses, PR and marketing professionals alike need are fewer, but better stories that can capture hearts and minds at scale. 

We call this break through storytelling that can cut through the noise. 

Planning for this is easier than executing on it so let me help you with that. 

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Outbound vs. Inbound PR: Why We Need a Mindset Change

[fa icon="calendar'] 26-Sep-2017 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Public Relations, Inbound Marketing, Inbound PR

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“PR should reinvent itself; we are still rooted in conventional ways of thinking. If we don’t do it, we will die out like dinosaurs.”

This is one of the quotes that come to my mind when I think about the PR industry. The quote was by Iwona Sarachman, PR director at AmRest sp. z o.o., and was noted during an executive debate hosted by PRWeek last year which discussed the evolving relationship between marketing and PR.

Traditionally, PR has always been associated with media relations or publicity—writing press releases and pitching them to journalists to get coverage in newspapers, magazines, TV, or radio programs.

The more modern version of this in the digital world is influencer relations or simply pitching bloggers, YouTubers, Instagrammers, or anyone who’s influential online.

However, PR is so much more than just media or influencer relations. If done right, PR can encompass all media types within the PESO model—Paid, Earned, Shared, and Owned.

But the PR industry is not fully there yet. We are still rooted in conventional ways of thinking and doing; still stuck with old habits; still using phone and email and avoiding technology.

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If You Pitch, Then Pitch The Right Way: What the Media Wants

[fa icon="calendar'] 05-Sep-2017 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Public Relations, Inbound PR

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We know that PR is so much more than just media relations. 

But the media hasn't gone away and remains a valuable source to spread the word about our business, especially in B2B or more complicated industries. 

Media relations, though, is done pretty badly. Journalists don't really like PR professionals because they spam them with non-stop emails and phone calls. The worst part is that the content of those pitches is irrelevant or not of interest for the journalist. 

So how do you do it right? I've written a whole blog post on doing media relations the inbound way, however, what I want to show you today are some stats from Muck Rack's latest research on how journalists use social media that support the points I make in the mentioned blog post.

5 Tips on How to Pitch the Media

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Everything You Need to Know About SEO as a Beginner [Infographic]

[fa icon="calendar'] 29-Aug-2017 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Inbound Marketing, Inbound PR

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In today's digitally driven world, if I can't find you as a brand online, you pretty much don't exist. 

Even if I spot your store on the street, I'll probably check out your website and your social profiles to vet you. 

That's the world we live in today and if you are not highly visible online, you won't make it far. This is why SEO (or search engine optimisation) is so important.

Especially for small business owners, SEO is not only a buzzword but also a term whose meaning is easy to understand but hard to implement. I would add PR professionals to this group as well because not many of them have expanded their expertise to SEO even though SEO today is primarily driven by relevant, quality content - and content is what PR pros do best.

At HubSpot, we preach a lot about topic clusters. But as a beginner in SEO, before you get to topic clusters, you really need to understand the basics of SEO.

Here's where a fantastic infographic from SEO Jury comes into play. (I suggest studying it yourself or giving it to your new hires too.)

16 SEO FAQs You Need to Understand [Infographic]

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