When you want to generate powerful publicity or land new customers or clients, Dan Janal is a go-to-guy. As a former reporter, and now as a speaker, author and advisor, Dan knows how to help you capture eyeballs, to then produce mindshare, marketshare and walletshare.
Plus, he's a really good guy! We've been friends for years. And I always dig Dan's friendly, upbeat personality and results-driven approach to business. He'll help you achieve more and make more.
Jeff Blackman: What are simple, yet proven ways, any individual or company can generate positive PR?
Dan Janal: The easiest way for anyone to get publicity is to piggyback onto an existing news story. For example, local reporters always want to get the local reaction to a national story. They actually need to speak to people like you!
Read your local media and see what stories you could comment on. Every month the government releases reports on real estate trends, interest rates and employment, so if you're a realtor, banker or career counselor, you have a built-in opportunity to be quoted.
Facebook and Twitter are also incredibly useful tools for news that's hot and trending. Follow their feeds and call reporters when there's news, a fad, or something interesting you can comment on. (Which can also help build your business.)
JB: How does one capture the attention of a journalist or broadcaster, to become a source expert for a topic or industry?
DJ: First, they have to know you're willing to offer information at a moment's notice. If you wonder why reporters always call your competitors for quotes, it's because they made the effort to contact the reporter and make themself available. And you didn't!
Identify five media outlets read, watched or listened to by your prospects. Then find the reporters who cover your topic. Next, send a short email letting them know who you are, your background, experience and how you can help them. Include a link to your website or LinkedIn profile. Reporters are trained to be suspicious and to check their sources.
Yet despite initial skepticism, reporters actually will welcome your email, because they're always looking for new, reliable, compelling sources. And don't be reluctant to contact a reporter who seems to have a point-of-view contrary to yours, they're tasked with writing or telling both sides of a story.
Finally, be available. If you aren't, they call the next person. They're under tight deadlines, so you might have only one chance to comment. I've seen too many talented folks miss opportunities to be quoted, because their office phones were guarded by gatekeepers. Include your extension, a direct line and even your cell phone number.
JB: What are the steps to market and sell profitably, products or services on the Internet?
DJ: Create a "lead magnet." Offer an incentive for people to engage with you. You might offer a special report or a webinar. The content should help you build trust with a prospect. To get the content, the prospect gives you their name and email. Armed with this info, you can now send them a series of follow-up emails to build trust, rapport and eventually...ask for the order.
Initially and ideally, create a "product" you can send via email since it doesn't cost you anything. A book or other offering can also be mailed, yet this increases your costs.
JB: What are the key factors that influence and drive a decision-maker to say "yes?"
DJ: You have to solve a problem. If you can't scratch their itch, they aren't going to buy. Lots of money will soon be spent on Super Bowl ads. Most are funny. People might laugh. Yet if you don't want or need what they're selling, who cares. You're not going to buy!
Companies must teach prospects why they need what they're selling. Look at mouthwash, deodorant, and dandruff shampoo for three very old examples, or an iPhone, Roomba or drone for new examples.
There was once a time, when people didn't realize they had bad breath, body odor or dandruff. But companies' ads told prospects they had these problems, while advertisers had solutions.
JB: How can folks better use and monetize social media channels?
DJ: Authenticity is the key to social media. You must be real, so people want to work with you.
One of my LinkedIn contacts wrote on his profile, "Don't contact me telling me how much money you can make for me." That sums up people's thoughts about sales on social media. They don't want to be sold. But they'll buy if you build trust and offer value.
JB: Now, more than ever, there are so many ways to try to capture a prospect or customer, so what are sure-fire ways to rise above the noise?
DJ: It's amazing how effective Facebook can be in targeting your ideal audience, showing them your ads and then making sales. Plus it's inexpensive to buy ads. My clients with the best success use Facebook ads with the "lead magnet" strategy.
JB: What do you know, others must know?
DJ: It takes a long time to become an overnight success. While many people might be seduced by stories of thirteen-year-old millionaires, videos gone viral, or startup companies going public, those stories are rare. As documented in the book, The Millionaire Next Door, most wealth comes from family-owned businesses and by people who save money for decades. Everyone wants the quick win, but most fortunes are made over time.
Take the time, to win more often, and visit: http://www.janal.com/