Walk into most stores today and you will see Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas decorations vying for space on store shelves. It’s become a race to the finish line as one year comes to an end and a new one is right around the corner.
For companies, it’s a reminder that it’s time to start budgeting for the next year. Regardless of whether you are a small business or a large corporation, if you want to continue to reach your intended target audience then adding PR and marketing to your budget is essential.
Where to begin?
In a world filled with digital media, the opportunities continue to evolve, you just need to start taking advantage of them. The two biggest complaints I hear from small business owners is “I don’t have a budget for that” or “I don’t have time to engage in social media or public relations opportunities.” My response: “You can’t afford not to set aside even a small portion of your time and budget.”
If you have not even begun social media and PR outreach efforts, then you are already losing out to the competition. Google your competition, take a look at what they are doing. Are they on LinkedIn? Facebook? Twitter? Instagram? YouTube? Yelp? Do they have a blog? Is their website fresh and up-to-date, while yours was created years ago?
So many options, so little time
Yes, there are a ton of social media options available today and you can’t be on all of them (well, you can, but it’s best to start small if you are just getting started). Pick one or two and go from there.
A recent report by Intuit suggests that by 2020 (that’s just a few years away folks) more than 40 percent of the American workforce – approximately 60 million people – will work as freelancers, contractors, and temporary employees.
With an increasing number of people jumping into the freelance talent pool, LinkedIn recently expanded its professional services marketplace dubbed ProFinder.
The service, which LinkedIn began piloting a year ago, but only recently made available nationwide, allows those who are looking to hire to cast a wide net by simply answering a few questions. It starts by asking “What service do you need?” Categories range from accountants to lawyers, graphic designers to public relations consultants. The questions further drill down into more specifics to help you find the right person. For example, if you’re looking for a writer do you want a technical writer, a grant writer or a blogger?
Once you narrow it down, click on the “Get Free Proposals” button and you’re off.
LinkedIn looks to find the best person suited for your request from area freelance professionals, like myself, and sends the recommendations to you.
For those who are looking to get hired, Profinder also helps you to get clients. Click here to get started.
Garton-Miller Media is a full-service, South Florida-based public relations firm. Founder Susan R. Miller has 30 years of experience as a writer, journalist and PR professional.