If you run a services-oriented business, such as providing writing and editing services, solutions and support, there are many ways to get free publicity with the goal of attracting new clients. Here are six ideas I’ve used or considered.
Write an article or column
One way that I currently receive free publicity is through Rental Housing Business magazine, which is a magazine directed toward Canada’s rental housing industry. In addition to writing the features in the magazine, and serving as editor, I also write one or two articles per issue that have my name on it. I’ve received several positive comments from the articles. Getting published in a national magazine is a great way to get free publicity. I could pursue other publications as well to expand my free publicity – I also write for Advisors Magazine, which puts my name out there.
Write a letter to the editor
Writing a letter to the editor is a good way to get free publicity. I can write a letter on a topic of interest or in response to an article. I can contact my local paper (The Liberal), a trade magazine (perhaps published by a client or something I read, like Profit magazine), a newsletter (the Association of Independent Consultants newsletter) or an online forum (such as Quora). For me, it’s a matter of finding the right topic to write about.
Publish an informative booklet
I can create and publish an informative booklet or newsletter that covers a top ten list of writing and editing topics. I could provide tips on being a better business writer, writing better emails, what to look for when hiring an editor or writer, writing better web copy, etc. This will require some thought, as I want to produce something useful and interesting.
I did write a book (How to Run Your Company… Into the Ground), which is more than a booklet. However, it is informative and useful for small business owners, so it does the job quite well… and it shows off my writing ability.
Give a talk
I’ve thought about doing public speaking at association events, networking groups, etc. I did an impromptu talk on networking for a group of editors taking a course on getting more business (watch it here). Of course, I am somewhat introverted, so getting up in front of a group of people can be a challenge. Perhaps producing a free webinar would be a good way to go!
Conduct and publish research
I really like the idea of doing research and then publishing the results for others. Basically, I would send a questionnaire to a number of companies and/or clients with questions on a particular topic, and then I would publish my findings as a free report. This would inform my readers and position me as an expert on that topic. I’ve worked on a number of questionnaires and research projects, so I understand how they work and how I could set up a good questionnaire. It’s just a matter of choosing a topic that will interest people enough to participate. This can be done electronically, as there are some good online services available for this sort of thing.
Write a press release
I have experience with writing and editing my clients’ press releases, so I know exactly how to put one together. Again, it’s a matter of finding the right topic to publicize with a press release. I could write a press release about:
- Newly published research study
- New use for my existing service
- Information on a seminar, webinar or speaking engagement I’m giving
- Success story based on work with client
- New publication
- Projections or forecasts of trends from the expert’s point of view
What methods have you used to garner publicity? Or do you need help with writing your press release and marketing materials? Let me know – firstname.lastname@example.org.