We're hiring!

FACTEUR-PR-Reena-Goodwin

FACTEUR PR is growing and we’ve got a few empty seats that need filling!

We are a boutique studio that offers a blend of public relations, social media, content marketing, and digital creative services for emerging and established lifestyle brands and businesses (more specifically, in industries like beauty, home, retail, design, food + drink, health + wellness). We work with clients in Northeast Ohio and across the United States from our office in Ohio City – and soon, London, too!

We're currently looking for candidates with a passion for lifestyle brands and experience in marketing–media relations to fill the roles of:

Applications may be submitted through the links directly above.

London Calling: Hannah is heading across the pond!

Hannah Krisinski, Digital Communications Assistant

Hannah Krisinski, Digital Communications Assistant

We are super excited to announce that one-third of FACTEUR PR is moving to LONDON! Hannah is moving across the pond for grad school, and while earning her master's degree in Promotional Media: Public Relations, Advertising & Marketing, she'll be continuing her great work at FACTEUR in the newly created role of Digital Communications Assistant! ⁠⁠

Hannah joined the FACTEUR team in March 2018 as a PR intern while studying at Cleveland State University. Since then, she’s been an important team member for both FACTEUR and its roster of lifestyle clients, collaborating on projects for brands like ODE Natural Beauty, Sunless Inc., Naturepedic, InCuya Music Festival, AEG Presents, L’or de Seraphine, Oak + Honey Event Planning Co., FreeRange SkinCare, and more.

From the UK, Hannah will continue to play an expanded role in the growth of FACTEUR PR as well as for our clients and community as she furthers our public relations and social media efforts remotely.

We are so proud of you, Hannah! While we will miss seeing you in the office here in Cleveland, we're thrilled to keep you on the team as you follow your dreams – and as you open up the London office! ;). ⁠⁠Leave your well wishes for Hannah in the comments! ⁠

Based in the United Kingdom? Interested in working together? Contact us!

Related: Apply for our Fall/Winter Internship!

Five key components to include in your 2020 marketing plan

Marketing Plan Template 2020

If you’re a business owner or an entrepreneur, chances are you want sales and recognition year round – and therefore, you’re going to want to be marketing your business year round, as well. If instead you treat your campaigns like a quick fix solution to a problem, that’s all you’re going to get. But if you’re looking to build, sustain, or elevate your brand over time, grow your business genuinely, attract customers who will buy, and increase your revenue, then you need to develop a plan.

A plan sets us up for success first and foremost by establishing and managing expectations for the year ahead and eliminates distraction. It turns ideas into action and helps us be proactive with the work we are doing. And research has shown that when we have a plan, we are more likely to achieve our goals.

Here are five key areas your marketing plan must include:

1. A vision

The first thing we need to consider when putting our plan together is the mission of our brand, business, or organization. The mission states why your brand exists. It’s usually surrounding the ways you serve your audience. Your vision, on the other hand, is your higher purpose. What do you want to ultimately be or strive for?

The goal of our plan is to make our vision a reality. To do this, we need a strategy that articulates when and where we’ll utilize our resources to meet our goals, and the tactics are the actual how-tos when it comes to seeing your strategy through.

2. A summary of who is your target audience

If you’re speaking to everyone, you’re speaking to no one. Drill down to the specifics of who this marketing plan is going to be targeted towards. If you don’t know, then start with a survey of your e-mail newsletter list, your social media audience, and past customers or clients.

3. Goals + Objectives

You can pull this list from your business plan if you have one. If not, don’t worry. Take some time to think - where do you want your business to be a year from now? Two years? Five? 10? It’s so important to have your goals down on paper. Make them real and make them specific. For example, are your goals budget or sales related? Write them down. Is one of your goals to build your e-mail subscriber list or garner press coverage? (It should be!) Write that down, too.

4. Strategies and tactics

Our strategies should answer the question of how will we achieve our goals and objectives this year. Think about various campaigns you can launch, events you can produce, or services you might want to provide.

Tactics support these strategies. If you’re launching a campaign, you’re likely going to want to pitch the news to certain publications with enough time to maximize timing to garner attention and sell tickets, for example. You could also be your own media and develop guest blog posts and video and photo content.

5. Budget considerations

A plan should conclude with a page for the various resources you might need to budget. A few common ones for marketing and PR you’ll need to consider include photo shoots, mailing product, hiring any consultants, and so forth. Laying out this wish list will help you for your planning for the year ahead.

Are you ready to get started on your 2020 marketing plan?

Well guess what – we’ve made it easier with our ready-to-go template! In our 33-page file, you'll receive an organized, presentation-ready template for you to document your plan strategically and chronologically through the year. In addition to analysis exercises to nail down your goals and objectives – and what you need to do to achieve them – this template also includes space for a yearlong strategies summary and month-to-month plan. Specific sections of this template are customizable and include a summary, situation analysis, target audiences, goals & objectives, strategies, accompanying tactics, measurement milestones, and budget considerations.

Social media and story ideas for September

September content ideas

September is nearly here, which means summer is almost over (sadly)! But who else thinks fall is the best season? (We kinda do!) The approaching season has no shortage of great events that can serve as an inspirational source for blogging, and September is no exception. These ideas are also applicable to your social media and media relations pitches. To get you started, here are just a few opportunities this month to align your brand or business with some already note-worthy happenings online.

September is...

  • Better Breakfast Month

  • Whole Grains Month

  • Yoga Month

  • Healthy Aging Month

  • Self Improvement Month

  • Classical Music Month

Daily opportunities include...

September 2: Labor Day
September 6: National Read a Book Day
September 18: National Cheeseburger Day
September 21: International Day of Peace
September 22: First Day of Fall
September 25: One Hit Wonder Day
September 26: National Pancake Day
September 27: Women's Health & Fitness Day
September 28: Drink Beer Day
September 29: National Coffee Day
 

Want more content ideas for the year? These are just a few of the ones we've identified! We have developed four editorial content calendars specifically for the food & drink, arts & hobbies, health & wellness, and lifestyle industries. You can find them under the Instant Resources tab here on the FACTEUR website (and showcased below). We've pulled together social media, blogging, and PR opportunities based on monthly and daily holidays, hashtags, and high profile events that are related to each of those industries. Also included is a list of story ideas to get you started with developing your editorial plan, as well as space to brainstorm your own ideas. We're offering each calendar for $9, and if you buy all four with our Blogger Bundle, you basically get one free! Plus, every time we update the calendars, we'll make sure you'll get the newest iteration (at no extra charge, of course). Happy creating!

PIN THIS!

PIN THIS!

Five reasons The DIY PR Project might be right for you

If you follow FACTEUR PR on social media, you’ve probably seen us posting about The DIY PR Project, a digital public relations workshop for the small business owner on a budget. Have you considered enrolling but felt hesitant about whether or not it’s the right fit? Here are five reasons why The DIY PR Project might be perfect for you.

You’re on a tight budget (or have nearly no budget to devote to media relations efforts).

Let’s face it — while you’re establishing your brand, every dollar you put toward your business matters. It’s easy to have a rigid filter on what you spend your money on, so we want to make this course as financially accessible as possible! The five-part course, complete with workshop modules, workbooks, 24-hour response time from our team and more, costs $397 total. If you register before July 31, you can take $100.00 off your package as an early bird member. With the discount, that comes to $59.40 a week, where you have access to rapid accountability and motivation that will help you stay on track and on budget. The cost of hiring a publicist will land you anywhere from $50-$250 an hour.

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You’re a solopreneur.

Doing this alone can be a challenge! Thankfully, the project includes videos created by Reena S. Goodwin, the founder of FACTEUR PR. After working in the field for more than a decade, you can feel confident that you’re in good hands when it comes to learning from a reputable source. When you sign up for the course, you also gain access to a private Facebook group with other members of the project. You’ll have a safe space to ask and answer questions while forming a community in the meantime.

You’re in charge of marketing for a brand and want to learn PR, too.

We love that you’re interested in expanding your knowledge! While a job in marketing lends itself well to understanding public relations, there are definitely differences between the concentrations, and we’re here to help break them down. With our week-by-week set-up, you’ll get public-relations-centered content delivered to you every seven days, allowing you to take your time downloading information and putting it to action in each corresponding workbook. This intentional setup allows time to review the content at your own pace and establish any questions you may have. Coming from a marketing background, we’re sure you’ll bring valuable and unique insight to our group of DIY PR Project students!

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You’re interested in outsourcing PR, but first want to get an idea of how it all works.

There’s no better way to understand something than having hands-on experience. Through our informative and illustrative videos, you’ll get a first-hand look at the ins and outs of public relations work from an experienced professional who has landed coverage for clients in national media outlets like Elle, Forbes, and Refinery29. This workshop will show you how, helping you gain a valuable perspective of the practice of public relations and how the media works, with explanations delivered in simple and accessible format. After learning about the process, you can feel confident making decisions when it comes to next steps for the brand you represent.

You’ve tried to land publicity for your brand in the past and didn’t see results.

It’s challenging to spend lots of time on outreach and feel as if you’ve come up short. And while The DIY PR Project can’t guarantee results (because hey - you still need to do the work and build those relationships!), we can guarantee you’ll learn things you didn’t know before and feel educated and empowered to pitch your brand to the right editors. If you sign up for the optional Pitch Pack Review, we’ll spend time reviewing your workbooks and offer you written, from-the-heart feedback about where to make improvements and go next. And whether your media results are immediate or gradual, you will forever have access to our course materials and updates, with the ability to review them any time and pitch onward!

Interested in learning more and signing up?

The DIY PR Project officially launches on Thursday, August 1. Register by July 31 at save $100 on the course (plus, take $100 off the optional Pitch Pack Review with the code PITCH100 through July 31, too). Cold feet still? You can still sign up anytime after August 1, but just keep in mind the prices will increase at that point.



Here's how having a strong brand helps your marketing

Whether you’ve owned a business or are thinking about starting one, branding that is true to your business identity is a crucial component of attracting your ideal clients. You can have the most extravagant marketing budget, but if your branding falls flat, appears outdated, or just doesn’t live up to the quality of products or services you provide, you might find yourself in a tough position when it comes to selling yourself. When it comes to marketing your brand, your story – verbal, written, and visual – need to be positioned and communicated clearly. While a communications professional can certainly help with messaging and storytelling, your creative assets must line up, too. 

photo: Annie Spratt

photo: Annie Spratt

CONSISTENCY:

In such a visual culture, recognizability really is key, particularly when standing out among your competitors. By drawing client and consumer eyes to a familiar look, you’re bound to have them more easily engaged than if your feed or website was made up of shots of varying quality or appearance. One way to ensure this is by selecting a photographer whose work represents the mood and style of your company. If you’re creating the photos in-house, you can achieve a similar idea by scouting out presets that embody the spirit of your brand. Google works wonders for finding these! The majority of presets will cost money to download, but considering the work a photographer put into creating them and the frequency with which you’ll use them, they’re well worth the investment.

RELIABILITY:

No matter what you’re promoting, beautiful photography will establish a deeper trust in potential consumers. They’ll be able to tell you care about your product — enough to have it captured in its best light by a talented professional. Audiences may be skeptical at first glance, and it’ll help if there is accuracy in how your company is portrayed. More and more, businesses are simplifying their marketing, assuring customers that what they see is what they get. Remember: consumers are increasingly attracted to brands that inspire or support a lifestyle, not just sell a product or service. By creating and sharing content that they can relate to you, your brand is not only attractive but attainable.

AESTHETICISM:

Social media and your website will be a driving force in how your brand is viewed. And let’s be honest, we want it to be gorgeous! The best way to achieve this visually is photography that is not only beautiful to look at, but tells a story and invokes a feeling in the viewer — it might not be apparent right away, but this method will inevitably top the noise of flashy advertisements at the end of the day. The best art directors and photographer know how to communicate clearly without adding unnecessary information their shot.

Above: Herbivore Botanicals is a great example of a strong brand. It not only sells beautiful products in gorgeous packaging, but also celebrates a lifestyle.

COMMUNITY:

Besides the obvious of wanting your brand to look its best, contracting a visual artist, whether a photographer or stylist, will only build your connection to community. They’ll likely be eager to post the work they did for you on their sharing platforms, all the while tagging your company and bringing you extra recognition. In the meantime, you now have a wealth of images you can share for several weeks or months, creating a cohesive feel to your branding while also sharing the photographer’s work to a wider audience. The payoff is twofold, and it will also increase your chances of working with them in the future. By forming a relationship with creatives in your community, you are entrusting someone to know your brand. The more readily they familiarize themselves with it, the better chance they will give it credit.

As a photographer and a marketer, I’ve progressively found it easier to identify someone’s photography without glancing at their username — but you’d be surprised how quickly your clients will be able to do this as well, visual background or not. Brand recognition is totally key! Have fun with the process, instituting a theme of sorts from the start, without letting it box you in. After you have a vision in mind, explaining your hopes to a professional will help solidify your grip on your product or service, while also identifying any holes you might not have noticed prior to your conversation. So: what’re you waiting for? If it’s time to kick start your business, or for a brand refresh, we hope we’ve offered some good reasons why!

 

Seven ideas to promote your business for the first day of summer

With summer comes tan lines, bike rides and relaxed times — but it can also come with an underlying heartbreaker — that summertime slowdown. It’s less frequently touched on than the highlights and joy rides the season can take on us, but it can totally be real! Maybe you’ve reached a posting slump, hit a snag in your marketing plan, or began getting slower responses through your public relations efforts. Thankfully, we’re here to help with a fun list that will get you out of that rut and back into that sun.

photo: unsplash

photo: unsplash

An Instagram giveaway featuring your favorite summer collection items — nothing attracts an audience like free goodies! Set something up on your feed and your Stories for maximum results. Create a flat lay of the latest and greatest things your business has to offer, whether that be stationery, sunglasses, or skincare. For greater results, ask another local business to provide an item or two of their own, allowing them to gain exposure while also bolstering your package. Promote the giveaway frequently, and require participants to tag their friends in the comments in order for their entry to be valid (bonus entries if they share on Stories!). In this way, your post will be exposed to more eyes, providing increased brand recognition. Plus, who doesn’t feel good about a business giving back?

In-store events with indie brand pop-ups, live music, wine or snacks while you shop — summer is a time for activity! When there are so many other options for entertainment, directing people into your shop with some unique alternatives is a great way to attract new customers. If there is an added element such as snacks by a local bakery, drinks from a close-by brewery or tunes from a hometown musician, customers are bound to see their time with your brand as not just transactional, but experiential.

Free downloadable to attract email addresses — At FACTEUR, we love sharing knowledge. It not only helps position us as being well-versed in our industry, but it also allows us to give back to our community. Your business should consider the same – drop that free knowledge in exchange for a precious email address. No underhanded tactics here, just some friendly sharing about your products from time to time, coming straight to inboxes. The downloadable you share can contain recipes if you’re a personal chef or restauranteur, styling tips if you represent a fashion line or boutique, or recommendations on how to relax after work if you’re a yoga instructor. Add value to someone’s life and in turn add valuable new audience members to your e-mail list.

photo: unsplash

photo: unsplash

Instagram/Facebook live of your new summer collection — We’ve said it once and we’ll say it again: GO LIVE OR GO HOME! If you want to really connect with your audience on social media, video – especially live video – is the way to go. The ultimate goal is to feel like a customer’s friend, someone they look forward to seeing pop up because you’re providing them with something helpful! In fact, some people may know you only by your handle for so long before they make the leap to in-person connection. Make it count! Creating an Instagram or Facebook live video of the items in-store will entice followers to come your way, energized about specific pieces they saw on the screen (and hopefully by your own self, too!).

Share a postcard with a discount code valid through the end of summer in shopping bags and via email after purchase — there’s no better way to thank your customers for supporting you than a.) saying and b.) saying it with a discount! If you can provide them with products for a cut of the price, you’ll be sure to create a personalized loyalty that extends with every inventory change you make. You love your customers — after all, they’re what keeps you going, both emotionally and financially — and a discount code is just as much as a thank-you to them as it is for you. While we spend so much time trying to gain new customers, don’t forget retaining your current consumer base.

photo: unsplash

photo: unsplash

Social media advertising campaigns — there is so much to be said for good old-fashioned consistent and creative posting. Social media users love to see quality content paired with your username, and we believe you can make it happen with consistency at the core! By creating a frequently used font and color palette, choosing a dedicated filter or preset and using a scheduling program such as Later or Hootsuite, you can truly make the most of your social channels while advertising products or services you offer. This might also mean taking the plunge to pay for a boosted post or spending some of your budget on video creation for your company. Whatever it is, we promise: people will notice the efforts you put in!

Pitch local media to create a story centering around a theme that includes your business — do you own a beach-glass-based jewelry company that sells at local markets? Highlight why this has a place in a larger TV or print package about summer festivals, beach clean-ups or the best local vendors to make that upcoming proposal perfect. Getting your products on television stations or in magazines that your ideal consumer watches or reads can be just the exposure you need in a dry season. Remember when pitching that your timing and relevancy is everything.

Photo: supply co

Photo: supply co

Looking for more ideas to fuel your social media, PR, and marketing efforts? Be sure to follow us on Instagram, sign up for our e-mail newsletter below, and check out our instant resources!

PR = Patience Required

Reena-DIYPR4.jpg

There’s a saying saying that goes, "don't compare your Chapter 1 to someone else's Chapter 20."

Whichever way you define success, it's always so important to remember that it does NOT happen overnight. The same thing can be said about publicity. We often hear from potential clients that they are ready to commit to PR and looking for "quick wins." While it's true, news can spread overnight thanks to the Internet and particularly social media, embarking on a PR campaign does not automatically guarantee fast results; in fact, you're technically not guaranteed anything. The ONLY guaranteed method of appearing in the media is through advertising or a sponsored spend. Earned media, just as it's called, is up to editorial decision-making. It's the job of your publicist to counsel you on how to create the best chance for that decision to be a yes. And chances are, he or she is going to have to ask more than once. It comes down to story ideas, budget, relationships, timing, branding, creative assets available, and so much more. That's why we often say patience is an important ingredient of a successful publicity campaign, along with persistence and hard work.

When building a brand, the value of earned media is significantly greater than any other type of media for long lasting awareness and reputation. So while it may take months or even years to land a positive feature story in the New York Times, for example, the payoff is this: you will ALWAYS be able to say "Featured in the New York Times" for as long as you and your business shall live. This is infinitely more valuable than "Featured in an Influencer's Instagram Post" or "Banner Ad Once Seen on the Internet." Yes, influencer relationships and banner ads do have their place in an overall marketing strategy. It’s important to diversify! But remember that if your story is documented, that press is permanent. For anything to live on as long as it does, it's going to take time to get there. But we promise you it's worth it.

The DIY PR Project launches August 1

DIY PR

Launches August 1

This summer, FACTEUR PR is launching a new online program for small business owners, creative entrepreneurs, and anyone who wants to understand how to prep for and procure their own publicity: The DIY Project: Prep For & Procure Your Own Publicity.

Over the course of five weeks, virtual attendees will have the opportunity to learn the basics of public and media relations, from identifying your target audiences and outlets, to putting together a thoughtful plan, creating a press kit, perfecting your pitch, and more!

The DIY PR Project is different than any other PR or marketing workshop online. Part class and part consulting, you'll not only have access to educational videos and helpful workbooks, but also access to the community so you can receive thoughtful feedback and answers to questions along the way.

Each week's lesson, led by FACTEUR PR Founder and Director, Reena S. Goodwin, will be brought to you in the comfort of your own home or office. The links to the workshop videos are delivered straight to your inbox every week along with the corresponding workbook of the week.

At the end of the five weeks, you’ll walk away with your Brand Pitch Pack, ready with the tools necessary to pitch your brand to the media and a feeling of empowerment that you can secure earned media coverage for your business!

Now, you may be wondering, "is the intention of this program to eliminate the need for a publicist?" The answer is "no way!" I have been working in this field for 13 years. There is no way I can share all there is to know about PR in five weeks, because nobody knows it all. We are always still learning as this industry is always evolving. 

Nevertheless, in the nearly three years since launching FACTEUR PR, we have identified a segment of business owners who either cannot currently afford a full-time or contract publicist, or want to expand the skillset of their in-house team to also handle media relations. We're offering the chance to obtain a comprehensive understanding and the tools to be able to succeed at PR on your own time, anytime. 

Interested? Here are some important dates to put into your calendar:

May 1: DIY-PR.com goes live with information about the workshop
July 8:
Registration opens
July 31:
Last day to register and save $100
August 1:
The DIY PR Project officially launches. Registrants receive lesson #1.

Ready to learn more? Hop over to DIY-PR.com to sign up for our e-mail list for more information.

Digital content and story ideas for May

May digital content ideas

Welcome to the month of May! If you're in the northern hemisphere, you are probably welcoming some consistently warmer weather, which always inspires us to create new things. May has no shortage of great events that can serve as an inspirational source for blogging. These ideas are also applicable to your social media and media relations pitches. To get you started, here are just a few opportunities this month to align your brand or business with some already note-worthy happenings online.

May is...

  • Vegan Month

  • National Peanut Butter Lovers Month

  • National Water Safety Month

  • World Stroke Month

  • National Bike Month

  • National Photograph Month

  • National Songwriting Month

Daily opportunities include...

May 2: National Lemonade Day
May 4: National Star Wars Day
May 5: Cinco De Mayo
May 5: Kentucky Derby
May 7: National Packaging Design Day
May 11: National Foam Rolling Day
May 12: Mother's Day
May 18: International Museum Day
May 20: Bike to Work Day
May 25: National Wine Day
May 27: International Jazz Day
May 28: National Hamburger Day
May 31: National Macaroon Day

Want more content ideas for the year? These are just a few of the ones we've identified! We have developed four editorial content calendars specifically for the food & drink, arts & hobbies, health & wellness, and lifestyle industries. You can find them under the Instant Resources tab here on the FACTEUR website (and showcased below). We've pulled together social media, blogging, and PR opportunities based on monthly and daily holidays, hashtags, and high profile events that are related to each of those industries. Also included is a list of story ideas to get you started with developing your editorial plan, as well as space to brainstorm your own ideas. We're offering each calendar for $9, and if you buy all four with our Blogger Bundle, you basically get one free! Plus, every time we update the calendars, we'll make sure you'll get the newest iteration (at no extra charge, of course). Happy creating!

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