Smart small business owners know the value of public relations  compared to traditional advertising.  An endorsement or mention by a credible third party helps establish your brand and build your reputation.

But how do get PR?  Start by sending press releases about things going on in your firm.  Focus on what’s new: New employees, new locations, new products or  services, new websites and  new certifications.  You can also write about awards, new or interesting projects and clients

What if you have nothing new going on?  No news?  Make some!   Jesse Luna had some great ideas in one of her recent posts.  My favorite: Consider creating a contest.  I love this suggestion, becasue a good contests will engage the community.  They will check in to see the progress and find out who won.   We did a great program a few years ago with a historic Inn during their reconstruction.  Working with local schools we created an essay contest.  Students were asked to write about what the community was like 150 years ago, when the Inn was first built and what they thought it would be like 150 years from now.

The winners were announced during a preview party for the Inn.  The winners and their teachers  received gift certificates for books.  Copies of all the essays were bound into a book, and put on display at the local library.    Of course the local community turned out to celebrate with the winners who’s pictures were featured in the local news, along with the owners of the Inn

Other ideas for publicity? Read Jesse’s column or share your ideas here.