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Public Relations Strategies for B2B

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Here are my pre­ferred pub­lic rela­tions strategies for B2B.

As a B2B organ­isa­tion, hav­ing a suc­cess­ful pub­lic rela­tions (PR) strategy is essen­tial for reach­ing your tar­get audi­ence and achiev­ing growth. Knowing which strategies to employ can be the dif­fer­ence between suc­cess and failure. 

In this art­icle, I’ll out­line the best pub­lic rela­tions strategies for B2B and how each can help you reach your goals.

Here we go:

Why Public Relations Matters for B2B 

In a world where atten­tion is fleet­ing, and loy­alty is hard to come by, small busi­nesses need every advant­age. That’s where pub­lic rela­tions comes in. 

There’s only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.”
— Oscar Wilde

At its core, PR is all about build­ing trust with your audi­ence through stra­tegic com­mu­nic­a­tion. It can help you cap­ture atten­tion, earn loy­alty, and scale your busi­ness for long-term success.

One of the most sig­ni­fic­ant advant­ages of PR for B2B is to build trust. 

By craft­ing a con­sist­ent nar­rat­ive that speaks dir­ectly to your audience’s needs and desires, you’ll cre­ate a sense of con­nec­tion that can be tough to achieve through oth­er mar­ket­ing chan­nels. This builds trust over time and makes cus­tom­ers more likely to stick around even when they have oth­er options.

Public Relations Challenges for B2B 

All organ­isa­tions face the chal­lenge of cre­at­ing aware­ness, espe­cially the B2B industry.

  • An organ­isa­tion, starved of atten­tion, trust, and loy­alty, is com­pelled to wage a per­petu­al struggle for its con­tin­ued existence.

B2B organ­isa­tions face a set of stand­ard chal­lenges when it comes to pub­lic relations:

  • Recognition. One of the most prom­in­ent obstacles is obscur­ity. The media and poten­tial cus­tom­ers often over­look B2B organ­isa­tions. This can make it dif­fi­cult for them to gain expos­ure and build recog­ni­tion in their industry. Unlike B2C com­pan­ies, they may not have the same recog­ni­tion that allows them to quickly get their mes­sage out there. As such, build­ing sol­id rela­tion­ships over time becomes cru­cial for gain­ing media cov­er­age and endorse­ments from those who mat­ter most.
  • Reputation. Reputation plays a huge role in pub­lic rela­tions for B2B. A neg­at­ive review or com­ment online can quickly spread and dam­age their hard-earned repu­ta­tion with­in their com­munity or industry.
  • Resources. Building fun­da­ment­al rela­tion­ships with stake­hold­ers, influ­en­cers, and pub­lics takes time, effort and resources that few — if any! — B2B organ­isa­tions have in abundance.

Public Relations Benefits for B2B 

When imple­men­ted effect­ively, PR can have numer­ous bene­fits for B2B:

  • Increased brand aware­ness. One of the most sig­ni­fic­ant advant­ages of PR is increased brand aware­ness. By cre­at­ing a pos­it­ive image in the eyes of the pub­lic, B2B organ­isa­tions can attract more cus­tom­ers and gen­er­ate more leads. With the help of effect­ive PR strategies, B2B organ­isa­tions can cre­ate a strong repu­ta­tion for them­selves in their industry and stand out from their competitors.
  • Better cus­tom­er rela­tion­ships. PR cam­paigns can help B2B organ­isa­tions com­mu­nic­ate more effect­ively with their cus­tom­ers and build a stronger bond with them. By shar­ing stor­ies, insights, and industry news with their cus­tom­ers through press releases, social media posts, and oth­er PR tac­tics, B2B organ­isa­tions can foster trust and loy­alty among their cus­tom­ers. This, in turn, can lead to repeat busi­ness, pos­it­ive word-of-mouth, and referrals.
  • Improved crisis man­age­ment. A sol­id PR strategy can help a B2B organ­isa­tion man­age crises more effect­ively. When a crisis occurs, B2B organ­isa­tions that have estab­lished a pos­it­ive repu­ta­tion through PR can more eas­ily weath­er the storm. They can use their exist­ing rela­tion­ships with cus­tom­ers, media out­lets, and oth­er stake­hold­ers to mit­ig­ate the dam­age caused by the crisis and recov­er more quickly.
  • Increase rev­en­ue and prof­it­ab­il­ity. PR can con­trib­ute to increased rev­en­ue or prof­it­ab­il­ity for B2B organ­isa­tions. By gen­er­at­ing pos­it­ive press cov­er­age, B2B organ­isa­tions can attract more cus­tom­ers and cre­ate more oppor­tun­it­ies for sales. Effective PR can also help B2B organ­isa­tions estab­lish them­selves as industry lead­ers, lead­ing to increased demand for their products or services.
  • Firmer stake­hold­er sup­port. PR can help B2B organ­isa­tions attract the atten­tion of poten­tial investors, part­ners, and col­lab­or­at­ors. B2B organ­isa­tions can cre­ate interest and enthu­si­asm among poten­tial investors and part­ners by show­cas­ing their accom­plish­ments and shar­ing their vis­ion with the world. This can open up new aven­ues for growth and expan­sion and help B2B organ­isa­tions achieve their long-term goals.

Public Relations Strategies for B2B

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Public Relations Strategies for B2B

Here are my pre­ferred pub­lic rela­tions strategies for B2B organisations:

  • Content Themes. Be the best in your industry or niche at organ­ising and pub­lish­ing con­tent in well-researched and stra­tegic­ally chosen themes.
    — Learn more about the con­tent themes PR strategy.
  • Deep Content. Be the best in your industry or niche at organ­ising and pub­lish­ing your con­tent in many lay­ers, allow­ing browsers to dig deep­er and deep­er and thus get more value than any­where else.
    — Learn more about the deep con­tent PR strategy.
  • Surround Message. Be the best in your industry or niche at con­vey­ing one spe­cif­ic thing only. This will require the dis­cip­line needed to fil­ter out everything else.
    — Learn more about the sur­round mes­sage PR strategy.
  • Hidden Arena. Be the best in your industry or niche at con­nect­ing act­iv­ists by sup­ply­ing them with an invite-only plat­form for exchan­ging ideas and coördin­at­ing their efforts. Provide them with resources if needed.
    — Learn more about the hid­den arena PR strategy.
  • Thought Leadership. Be the best in your industry or niche at provid­ing expert con­tent and opin­ions that can­not be found any­where else online.
    — Learn more about the thought lead­er­ship PR strategy.
  • Easy Street. Be the best in your industry or niche at execut­ing activ­it­ies and cam­paigns that come eas­ily and nat­ur­ally to your organ­isa­tion. “Do more of what works.”
    — Learn more about the easy street PR strategy.
  • Stupid Majority. Be the best in your industry or niche at tak­ing a stance against the major­ity. Just ensure this major­ity is fun­da­ment­ally flawed and long-term due for destruc­tion.
    — Learn more about the stu­pid major­ity PR strategy.
  • Superhero Solution. Be the best in your industry or niche at offer­ing a plug-and-play solu­tion for a small but wide­spread prob­lem. The solu­tion must have an easy-to-remem­ber name and be free.
    — Learn more about the super­hero solu­tion PR strategy.
  • Iceberg Publishing. Be the best in your industry or niche at cre­at­ing high-con­vert­ing land­ing pages with sol­id search intents while keep­ing every page on your site min­im­al.
    — Learn more about the ice­berg pub­lish­ing PR strategy.
  • Extra Mile. Be the best in your industry or niche at doing some­thing that does­n’t scale — like going above and bey­ond to provide cus­tom­er ser­vice. To be able to scale, we must some­times do things that don’t.
    — Learn more about the extra mile PR strategy.

Learn more: Public Relations Strategies for B2B

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The 1‑Page PR Strategy for B2B

If you can­’t explain it simply, you don’t under­stand it well enough.”
— Albert Einstein

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How to Write a 1‑Page PR Strategy

My inspir­a­tion for writ­ing “no-bull­shit” strategies comes from the clas­sic “Good Strategy, Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters” by Richard Rumelt. The 1‑Page PR Strategy focuses on how to win. 1Rumelt, R. P. (2011). Good Strategy, Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters. Crown Business.

The most basic idea of strategy is the applic­a­tion of strength against weak­ness. Or, if you prefer, strength applied to the most prom­ising oppor­tun­ity.”
Source: Good Strategy, Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters 2Rumelt, R. P. (2011). Good Strategy, Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters. Crown Business.

Here’s how you can write a 1‑Page PR Strategy that fits one page — using the myth­ic­al battle between David and Goliath as an analogy:

1. Analysis

  • David can­’t beat Goliath using his size or raw strength, but he has an advant­age in speed and accur­acy from a distance.

2. Guiding Principle

  • David should­n’t engage in close com­bat but rather use tools that will allow him to strike from a distance.

3. Coherent Actions

  • David should­n’t use any heavy armour because that would slow him down.
  • David should use a sling­shot, a weapon he is famil­i­ar with and can strike from a distance.
  • David should lever­age the sur­prise ele­ment and not advert­ise his advant­age beforehand.

If you write 1 – 2 clear sen­tences per bul­let, your strategy should fit nicely on one page.

Read also: The Easy Street PR Strategy: Keep It Simple To Win

💡 Subscribe and get a free ebook on how to get bet­ter PR ideas.

The Magical PR Strategy Question

How To Create a PR Strategy - Spinning Top - Doctor Spin - The PR Blog
Spin for the win. (Photo: Jerry Silfwer)
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The Magical PR Strategy Question

Your PR strategy should answer one simple question:

  • Does this strategy provide a guid­ing prin­ciple for how your organ­isa­tion should defeat com­pet­it­ors in the battle for atten­tion, trust, and support?

Whenever your PR strategy fails to answer this ques­tion, it also fails to provide a roadmap to success.

Competitiveness is derived from per­man­ent infra­struc­tur­al char­ac­ter­ist­ics of organ­iz­a­tion­al design, rather than just rely­ing on tem­por­ary stra­tegic assets.”
Source: Strategic Change 3Connor, T. (2007). A con­sid­er­a­tion of stra­tegic assets and the organ­iz­a­tion­al sources of com­pet­it­ive­ness. Strategic Change, 16, 127 – 136. https://​doi​.org/​1​0​.​1​0​0​2​/​J​S​C​.​789

Learn more: The Magical PR Strategy Question

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Please sup­port my PR blog by shar­ing it with oth­er com­mu­nic­a­tion pro­fes­sion­als. For ques­tions or PR sup­port, con­tact me via jerry@​spinfactory.​com.

PR Resource: Public Relations Strategies

ANNOTATIONS
ANNOTATIONS
1, 2 Rumelt, R. P. (2011). Good Strategy, Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters. Crown Business.
3 Connor, T. (2007). A con­sid­er­a­tion of stra­tegic assets and the organ­iz­a­tion­al sources of com­pet­it­ive­ness. Strategic Change, 16, 127 – 136. https://​doi​.org/​1​0​.​1​0​0​2​/​J​S​C​.​789
Jerry Silfwer
Jerry Silfwerhttps://doctorspin.net/
Jerry Silfwer, alias Doctor Spin, is an awarded senior adviser specialising in public relations and digital strategy. Currently CEO at Spin Factory and KIX Communication Index. Before that, he worked at Kaufmann, Whispr Group, Springtime PR, and Spotlight PR. Based in Stockholm, Sweden.

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