Product Publicity Underutilized by Most Tech Companies
Over the years, I’ve observed something irrational and it was validated again on a recent visit to a technology company. That is, the product publicity function [in today’s marketing world] is totally misunderstood by engineers. Consequently, it is relegated to the lowly marketing coordinator.
Unfortunately, as a result the marketplace doesn’t get to see how innovative the firm is. Again, the reason is systemic and compounded by the fact that the marketing coordinator typically doesn’t know how to properly prepare publicity materials. Nor do they understand what the author David Meerman Scott refers to as “The New Rules of Marketing and PR.” Of course, there are exceptions and I am working with some very enlightened companies who have grown to see the value of an effective product publicity program.
What typically happens in technology companies, however, is the marketing coordinator only occasionally prepares a press release instead of doing it consistently. Ironically, it is often the result of an inquiry from a publication they are advertising in. Why? Because the advertising sales staff realizes how important publicity is and that their customers should be involved with it.
Often when a press release is prepared, the photograph is left over from a catalog shoot or worse is an amateur shot and uninspiring. What’s more, the marketing coordinator, who wants to please his or her boss, will usually include a quote from them. Because of their lack of knowledge, they prepare an advertisement masqueraded as a press release! Those often end up in the trash and if they are submitted online and published, they are laughable. Content is critical today and quality content which gets published on quality websites is even more critical.
So, I come back to a quote from a speech I gave to the American Marketing Association Boston Chapter many years ago when I was invited to talk about marketing for small technical companies. That was 1978 and I said, “There is nothing more irrational than investing hundreds of thousands of dollars on capital equipment and tens of thousands of man-hours on the development of your technology and business… and then failing to properly inform the world about your capabilities.” That notion is even more relevant today!
The bottom line is that an effective product publicity program can achieve amazing results with respect to communicating the awesome capabilities of your technical company with your prospective customers, existing customers, distributors, representatives, and greater business community. And today especially, with the impact of the internet and importance of integrated marketing, the task is too important to be relegated to a person who lacks the training and skills required to properly advocate for your company. If product publicity is underutilized in your marketing program today, we would welcome the opportunity to help you.
© 2012 Steven M. Stroum [All Rights Reserved]