PR Tip: The “Value Proposition Nugget” Principle in Public Relations
Your job as a PR Professional is not to make a writer’s job easier.
That’s a plus. It’s a means to an end. But it is not a valid business objective.
The classic approach to press or social media releases is to offer up an angle interesting enough or newsworthy enough for someone to pick-up your story. What the journals, blogs and news outlets use to judge that newsworthiness is, of course, the relevance your story has for their audience.
The challenge then, is not simply to be able to get their interest, that is to say the interest of the editor or writer that you are trying to entice with the newness, freshness or angle of your story. This is a well documented process and is the art, the science of PR. This is true whether it is PR for traditional media or PR in new media for reaching bloggers and other venues like that. The real challenge, however, is to make sure that your essential value prop – the “what” you actually offer and to whom you offer it and why they should care – isn’t lost in the story “angle”.
In other words, your real purpose in getting coverage can often get lost in making the story or angle interesting enough for the writers you are reaching out to. It’s important that you do not lose the ‘Why are you doing it in the first place?’ when trying to meet the requirements of their audience.
I acknowledge that you have to do those things in order to get coverage, but in doing so you can really miss out on the main thing. The “value prop nugget” principle is to make sure that in your story or pitch – that your angle and whatever it is that makes it interesting — that you don’t lose site of making sure that a reader who reads or hears the story you’re ‘pitching’ would not in any way be confused or lose track of what the heck it is that you actually offer.
Read your release, read your pitch materials and ask yourself- Is what I am offering and to whom and why they should care – in here? and If not, where is it? What paragraph points to it? What sentence calls it out? And is it buried as just “company X does service Y” at the bottom of the release? This by the way may or may not survive the cut of being put into your story. Is it woven into what you’ve actually pitched? … in a “can’t miss” way?
Read it again. Ask somebody else to read your release and ask them, ‘What’s the main point here and what does this company do?’ See if they pull out the value prop nugget from all of the other stuff you tried to get in there.