Your PR agency will always try to convey the exact message you wish to express to media and the market, but there are times when your appointed communications team will try to steer you away from certain ways of describing your company or your products. There are a handful of terms which can really grate when press releases are read by editors. Here are a few standouts that crop up every day on every media desk in Thailand.
A global leader
There are comparatively few companies that can truly claim to be THE world leader in their industry, but this doesn’t stop nearly every other company across the spectrum of industries from saying they are A leader in their field. This is generally okay as most press releases introduce the firm as being a leader in something; the important part is in backing this up with a means of demonstrating the validity of the claim made in the opening gambit. Where having an effective PR agency in place to support your communications is in managing the relationship between the media and the client; thusly, when you claim to be a leader at something, the term has credibility because the latest press release is just another piece of an ongoing communications strategy. Therefore, the media are likely to support your claim as you have worked hard to provide content for them over years and months that is relevant to A) their readership, and B) your target market information consumers.
A Game changing revolution
As with the world of music, there are very few moments in history that are genuinely revolutionary. Most product innovations tend to be evolutionary, unless they are really disruptive in terms of the way the global market will be changed to accommodate the introduction of said product or innovation (think iPhone or Uber). Media editors have to be careful when taking your press release and publishing it verbatim because readers expect them to be an honest and independent voice. When you claim to be game-changing but really the product is simply a different version of something that pre-exists, the media outlet cannot just publish this claim because doing so says to their readership that they agree with you. So, the press release will require editing or rewriting to tone it down, and more often than not they will not have time – it’s quicker just to no publish it. Keep communications simple by explaining what the product does and why it is new or excellent, but avoid making overly dramatic claims.
It’s nearly always a good idea to include an executive quote in your release because it makes the story more likely to be published. If the media outlet can include your CEO’s quote in the feature, it looks like they have actually sat down with an interview respondent and done the journalistic groundwork. Often though, client-drafted expressions will typically say that someone is delighted to have been selected to have received an award, and they wish to thank their dedicated team. Whilst there is nothing wrong with this in principal, the downside is that every press release across the media desk looks exactly the same. Your PR agency will try to embellish the statement by reiterating your key messages. This adds marketing value to your executive quote and keeps the whole release more on-message in terms of achieving your core communication objective.
Anything that uses the word innovative…
Describing your own work or products as ‘innovative’ signals to editors that they probably aren’t. It’s one of those editorial mood-killers that appears in nearly all press communications, and with repetition comes contempt (or at least apathy). It’s best to find a more interesting or more specific adjective to apply to your offering, if even just to differentiate yourself in terms of communications. There are many other ways to demonstrate your prowess in innovation, but by far the best is to make the most of longstanding and credible relationships with media stakeholders, which is where your PR agency comes in.
And finally, for any operators in the F&B/lifestyle cuisine area, please, please stop using “gastronomic journey that rewards the senses” – it’s so 2011.
[Image credit Animales Oso Polar]