Then it faded away. But now in its new guise it is more effective than ever.
Once upon a time PR was a central part in the marketing armoury of virtually every company, as firms selling into schools fought to get their name in front of teachers on a regular basis.
All that changed as newspapers and magazines moved away from printed editions to freely available online publications, meaning that publishers needed to gain an income from as many stories as they could. Press releases were no longer run for free.
At the same time, as companies found they were getting fewer replies for each advert, they tried to get free PR coverage for stories that were in effect little more than adverts. Very quickly the whole system broke down.
But PR does still work, and well-written pieces that are genuine stories can indeed still get significant coverage. Better still, it is now even possible for the company seeking the PR to be the “publisher” that is running its story.
In this process, the first point is that you really do have to convert what you are wanting to say into a news story. Simply saying that you have a new website is not a news story, no matter how many exclamation marks are put at the end of the announcement (!!).
But it is possible to proceed by developing a website that is going to be really helpful to teachers who are looking for teaching ideas or approaches on a particular subject. The website is, of course, freely available, but throughout it is branded as being from the company that developed this site and thus acts as a piece of PR and as an advert.
Of course, such a website has to focus around genuinely helpful information which teachers will utilise. And its style and approach is going to be different in every case. But once you have established your version of such a site you will be able to develop it in any way you wish.
If you would like to see what such a website looks like please do email Stephen@schools.co.uk or call 01604 880 927 and we’ll give you the details of one such site we have built – and examples of what a site that did a similar sort of job for your company could look like.