[This post was written by 3Points content manager Katie O’Shea]
When we start a conversation with a potential client, we often find ourselves explaining what PR can do for a company. And it’s no wonder — PR traditionally has been seen as a formula: (1) obtain media coverage, (2) raise company profile, then (3) profit. But, as we’ve discussed in a previous blog article, that’s the simplified version.
Today, PR looks very different — less like a line and more like a tree. It involves a lot more than just media coverage: each root of the PR tree represents a different PR effort (e.g., blog posts, social media campaigns, or speaking engagements). And, as a result, there are a great deal more goals it can achieve — the branches represent each of the different outcomes. Not just increased revenue, but elevated reputation, expanded customer base, and increased market share.
Some other branches represent your company’s HR goals, and it’s important to consider how you can leverage PR to help your company meet those goals. PR can help you make your company attractive to potential new hires and make your current employees proud to be a part of the team, increasing retention. Those outcomes are extremely important — there are real costs associated with high turnover or bad hires, and on the flip side, there are real business benefits to having happy and talented employees.
Below are some of the critical areas PR can help you highlight to aid you in meeting your HR goals:
In the last few years, company culture has become an important selling point, especially in tech, a highly competitive landscape for both employees and employers. With PR efforts in earned, owned, and social media, you can produce content that showcases the aspects of your company’s culture that make it great. Pitch a journalist about your amazing office space (and how it fosters a closer team). Tweet about the employee costume contest. Write a blog article about a company tradition. Here’s your opportunity to talk about things that are just plain fun. And when potential employees see that fun, they’ll be better able to judge whether your company is a good fit.
- Beyond open floor plans: Check out 5 of Chicago’s coolest tech offices, Built In Chicago
- YCharts Happy Hour (tweet)
When your company is doing good, using PR well is key. Highlighting your philanthropic work with blog articles and social media posts gives potential employees a sense of what your organization values. Current employees, whether they participated in that philanthropy or not, will be reminded of why they chose, and continue to choose, to be part of the team.
- YCharts In The Community: Brooklyn Queens Land Trust (blog article)
- ICE sponsoring T4Youth (tweet)
Another factor that often influences potential and current employees’ opinions of a company is communications related to benefits. Being able to clearly indicate your company’s great benefits — and the thought process the company used to decide them — shows team members that their company values them and their well-being.
- 7 Chicago tech companies dish on the best perks they offer, Built In Chicago
- 4 Chicago tech startups offering lifelong learning opportunities, Built In Chicago
News related to your company can sometimes garner media attention, which traditionally may have been a priority because it helps gain customers; however, media coverage also can make your company more attractive to prospective employees. Being able to see growth — whether that be in team size, customer base, funding, or profits — helps these individuals decide whether this is an organization whose trajectory they want to be part of. This kind of coverage also can galvanize employees, encouraging them to work to keep the successes coming.
- Provi Raises $3.5M to Bring Its Booze-Ordering Platform to More Markets, Chicago Inno (article)
When it comes to awards, if you got the prize, put it in front of some eyes! Your PR team can help you spread the word about the recognition that the company, or individual members of the company, receive. Awards are always newsworthy, and can be publicized on social media, in blog posts, or sometimes in press releases. They may even gain media attention. Just like positive news about the company, company awards can be motivating for current employees and impressive to prospective employees.
- Jenny Johnson Ware and Guinevere Moore named among Chicago’s Notable Women Lawyers 2018 (LinkedIn post)
- Julie Lerner recognized by Denver Business Journal (tweet)
If you’re hosting, sponsoring, or participating in an event, tell people. Whether or not your audience actually attends the event, showing them that you’re engaged in the industry or the community, or committed to furthering a cause, will make an impact.
Talking about the things that make your organization great may at first feel like bragging, but the key is to remember that there are tasteful ways to do it, as shown by the examples above. What you do reflects the values you hold as an organization, and showcasing those values will help attract potential employees as well as customers, not to mention remind your team of why they chose your organization. So, start spreading the word.
If you want to discuss how leveraging PR can help your company meet your HR goals, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.