So, a few years ago I got asked to go on the Chris Evans Show on Radio 2. I got over 5 minutes airtime in front of 8 million people. I mentioned my main consumer brand and had a good old banter with Chris that also got me some “love letters” from listeners.
How did I do this, and how could you do the same for your business?
Well, it was all about positioning. When I created the national skip hire brand, Topskips.com, I also created a magazine for the Skip Hire industry (which you will know if you read my last post) called “The Skip Magazine”. Apart from wanting to develop something that was a profit centre in it’s own right, it was also because:
(a) I wanted a way of communicating with the whole industry that wouldn’t cost me anything, so a magazine seemed ideal for this purpose. The reason for this was because Topskips was a broker and needed to be seen in a good light to our suppliers ie. the 7000 or so skip hire companies throughout the UK.
(b) As a former journalist myself, I knew that journalists are inherently lazy (not a diss, just a fact when pressed with deadlines etc.) which in turn meant that whenever anything came up relating to the skip hire industry, they would google and find our magazine.
As the publisher, this meant I was often called upon to act as the unofficial spokesperson for the industry, because there was no other obvious “expert”.
This is something that anyone can do within any industry.
And you shouldn’t get hung up on whether you are the world’s no.1 expert on a subject either – you just need to know more than the next person.
My good friend Mike Philbin is a great example of this. Within the floor cleaning industry, he decided to position himself as an expert by setting up a channel all about stone floor care.
You can check it out here.
The benefits to Mike of doing this were and still are huge. He runs a members area off the back of it, as well as the UK’s leading training courses for floor cleaning, not to mention selling chemicals to the industry and running a marketing course for the industry with me.
I’ve put the interview with Chris below for you to listen to.
There are a few things I want you to notice:
(a) the interview was scheduled to last for 2 minutes, but I got over double that airtime by preparing beforehand a bunch of amusing stories, anecdotes and ready-made quotes that I could shoehorn into the interview. Chris is a very fast thinker, so you don’t get a lot of time to um and ah on air.
(b) I managed to namecheck Topskips.com very early on in the interview without it seeming like an overt plug (something the BBC in particular does not like)
(c) I was not afraid to be “me” instead of someone watching their Ps and Qs too much. This was the key to the extended airtime.
I’d be interested to know if you have managed to get any PR like this for your business? It’s an extremely powerful way of getting noticed and, more importantly, getting social proof which has limitless benefits for your business that lift you up above your competition effortlessly.