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Summertime is the Primetime for High-Profile PR

June 21, 2011

Today’s post is courtesy of Jeff Lavery, an account manager for Rhino Public Relations. Questions or comments? E-mail him at jeff@rhinopr.com, and follow his tweets on Twitter @RhinoPR_Jeff.

Most public relations professionals will tell you that their clients associate the summer months as a time in which publications are no longer read, computers are shut down, and minds wander away like the tide. But with the inevitable vacations and cookouts come new opportunities to showcase what your company does and reach an audience that finally has the time to catch up on the news.

Even when wearing swim trunks, the BlackBerry doesn’t stray far from the hips, ensuring the business world is still staying up to date even when out of the office. Within that lies an opportunity to tell your story and connect with potential clients who previously didn’t have the time to respond to your call or e-mail. All too often, however, companies lose the marketing momentum they had going into the summer by reducing press release distribution, holding e-mail blasts, and not planning events, effectively vanishing from Memorial Day to Labor Day. It’s important to resist this temptation and remember that the summer represents the one time each year your targets may actually have time to learn about your business or read up on new services and products.

In fact, this fear that your audience has shut off the lights and left the building for the season may be entirely unfounded. A 2010 report  found that American workers recorded 448 million earned but unused vacation days last year, representing a staggering amount of time given back to the boss – $67.5 million worth, in fact. Compared to other countries, U.S. workers took the fewest days off, a mere 14 compared to France’s 35. So while the targeted recipients of your latest e-mail blast may be a bit bleary-eyed, chances are they haven’t packed their bags for Europe just yet. Use the summer months to keep your PR activity consistent and strong, and avoid the tendency to hibernate until September.

Contrary to popular belief, the outside world still wants to hear about your organization, even when beaches beckon. And in addition to keeping up with a steady stream of news about your daily operations, the fun side of your business could earn you just as much recognition as its professional endeavors. When it comes to pitching the media, consider the ways in which your team uses the summer to its advantage, from corporate outings to walkathons and fundraisers. A picture is still worth 1,000 words, and quickly becomes even more valuable if it demonstrates a commitment on the part of management to kick back or give back.

So in the summer of 2011, don’t put your PR on hold – turn it up. Instead of struggling to regain your pre-summer momentum in the fall, keep it strong and enter the final quarter with vigor, bringing along the new customers who finally had the chance to read your latest newsletter or check out a press release about your new work. Believe it or not, beach umbrellas don’t interfere with cell phone signals.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. June 24, 2011 12:11 pm

    You make an excellent point Jeff. We find people do more casual reading in the summer and during vacation times.
    Our July issue will feature the SMPS award winners. Congratulations to Rhino for this year’s awards.

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