Public Relations and Marketing During the Age of TikTok – A PR Pro Offers Tips – 220
Media has dramatically changed in the last 20 years. Just ask anyone who work(ed) in newspapers. Technology and the age of internet has turned the business of public relations and media on its head.
Still, there’s an important role to be played by more traditional forms of public relations. Today on the AM/PM Podcast, Tim Jordan welcomes Megan Bennett, a public relations pro with 18 years of experience. Megan is here to speak about the importance of traditional media channels and how publicists help bridge the gap between the story and the consumers.
Megan says that her job is to “reach out to the media, convince them to try a product, get them to love it, then make sure they feature it in a story.”
Starting back in the day with “smiling and dialing,” Megan has transitioned to pitching via email and other digital means. Still, it involves the exact same thing; getting top media outlets to cover a client’s products.
Megan says that it’s the story that sells and there’s always one to tell. Listen in and you’ll hear about a particular “grooming” story you might not have anticipated.
In episode 220 of the AM/PM Podcast, Tim and Megan discuss:
- 02:20 – Stalker? No, I’m Just a Publicist
- 04:00 – In a Social Media World, How Has Public Relations Changed?
- 06:00 – 250K in Sales in Two Weeks for One Pack of Hotdogs
- 09:00 – The Power of Driving Awareness
- 13:00 – Don’t Try to Be All Things to All People
- 16:45 – You Need to Tell a Story
- 19:00 – Below the Belt Grooming
- 22:15 – How to Know You’re Ready for a PR Firm
- 25:30 – Taking the First Step Forward
- 28:00 – What Are the Commonalities of the Success Stories?
- 31:00 – Public Relations and SEO
- 33:15 – How to Reach Out to Megan
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Tim Jordan: Media has changed in the past 20 years. Social media dominates where printed newspapers have failed. However, our guest Megan Bennett is going to talk to us about how more traditional, old school media and public relations can still be massively powerful for selling your product or for digital marketing. Basically, for building your business. Stay tuned. This episode is a good one.
Tim Jordan: I am Tim Jordan and in every corner of the world, entrepreneurship is growing. So join me as I explore the stories of successes and failures. Listen in as I chat with the risk takers, the adventurous and the entrepreneurial veterans. We all have a dream of living a life, fulfilling our passions, and we want a business that doesn’t make us punch a time clock, but instead runs around the clock in the AM and the PM. So get motivated, get inspired. You’re listening to the AM/PM Podcast.
Tim Jordan: Hey everybody. And welcome to another episode of the AM/PM Podcast. Today we have a guest that’s going to be talking about things that maybe aren’t always typically considered e-commerce topics. Right? When we look at the world of media and we look at the world of the Wall Street Journal 50 years ago is not the same thing as the Wall Street Journal now because the age of technology and computers and internet have changed the world like media has gone from the Wall Street Journal to Instagram, but there are still a lot of more traditional media coverage out there. And traditional media, honestly, hacks and tactics that we can use to help sell more products and have a bigger brand presence online and offline. So, our guest today has been a publicist for over 18 years, right?
Megan Bennett: Yes.
Tim Jordan: Basically you’ve bridged the gap between the story that needs to be told with the people that can tell the story. Was that a good way of saying that? Did I get that right?
Megan Bennett: Yeah.
Tim Jordan: All right. Awesome. So what you have today for us is some information, some really good advice, some methods on how we can create a story or something newsworthy with our products and our brands and how to get those into places that maybe we don’t traditionally think are powerful. Right? So, we’re going to walk you guys through the whole process of– as an Amazon seller, how this applies to you and all that good stuff, but first, welcome Megan Bennett. And I want to hear your story. How did you become a publicist?
Megan Bennett: Hi guys. Thank you so much for having me on the show. I’m so happy to be here. I became a publicist because I’m crazy. I’m a stalker. No, I’m just kidding. I do say though, to become a publicist, you have to be a certified stalker because you get rejected so many times and you have to just keep going and going and going after the same thing and going after what you want. I actually started out wanting to do publicity in the entertainment industry, did a couple internships after college, hated it, but like the PR side. And then when I was 22, I started to work part-time from this amazing lady who ended up being my mentor, Betty Light. She hired me. She worked for a few big brands like Rembrandt oral care products. And when she hired me, she said, you should be paying me for how much you’re going to learn working for me. And I just, I love consumer products. So that’s where I started out. And basically what public relations is, is us reaching out to the media and pitching your brand or your product in a way that they want to test it editorially, and then do a review authentically so that it’s not a paid for ad. And so my job is to convince the media and the talk show hosts and the editors and the producers to try whatever products that I’m promoting, get them to love it as much as I do, and then get them to feature it in a story, a segment to post. And I’ve been doing that for 18 years just because I love it so much. My job is my hobby and I love the brands that I work with and feel really passionate. And so I think that’s what really drives it is you’ve got to have something unique and different that people want to learn about.
Tim Jordan: But is it relevant? And I’m not saying it is or not, but playing devil’s advocate, everybody right now focuses on social media. The things that worked 18 years ago, do they still work today? Or maybe a better question is how has the world of press and public relations evolved to still remain relevant in a world where everybody’s looking at Instagram and Tik Tok?
Megan Bennett: Yeah, it’s totally evolved. When I started, I used to smile and dial. I grabbed, like, I print out a list of stuff from this huge binder of media contacts and I get on the phone and pitch something and sorry, not interested and just get rejected, rejected, rejected. Then I’d have to take notes. I had like 15 binders of notes that I would take. And then everything went digital and email, and then it started to be pitching via email. And I had to start calling and start clicking on the emails. And that’s what it is now. It’s me reaching out via email things have evolved. More things are integrated. It used to be in a TV segment, which you still can get into TV segments. Like on the Today Show, that’s not paid for it’s you pitching the brand, but a lot of segments now were integrated where you pay a lifestyle expert that’s going to go on and talk about your brand. So that’s something that’s different, but what is still the same is getting those top media outlets to cover you. I’ll give you an example. And it’s now more digital than print. Everybody wanted to be in people magazine. Well now being on people.com is just as good as being in the print edition because people are looking at their phones. They’re looking at their tablets. Digital is where it’s at. We worked with one company, had these amazing Wagyu, really upscale Japanese beef. They created these hot dogs that were Japanese beef, Wagyu hot dogs. And we pitched it to food and wine as being fricking amazing. And it was for foodandwine.com, sent this huge package of hot dogs. They didn’t get them. They got lost in the mailing room. We had to send another box. The client was like, are you sure we should do this? It’s really expensive. And I’m like, hell yeah, it’s food and wine. About two weeks later, my client it’s called KC Cattle Company. Amazing Wagyu beef veteran founded company like startup small. Well, they call me and they said, I don’t know what’s going on, but we’re getting all these sales. And we look online and it’s food and wine. They were voted the number one best beef hotdog by food and wine online. Within two weeks, they made $250,000 in sales. And that was from one PR placement that costs them. All it costs them was to send the product and have us as publicist. But we do this every month and we’re sending it to multiple outlets. So it’s stuff like that that can really make the meter move. And it’s that click through, which we didn’t have 20 years ago where you’ll read an article and you literally just click and get right to the store people before we’re just heading to retail. Now everything’s online. And that’s why Amazon is also so important these days.
Tim Jordan: Yeah. The call to action. The ability to take action immediately not read something in the back of the Air Mall magazine on flight, wait till you get home, make the phone call, order this stuff, send a check or money order. Things happen fast. But it’s interesting to me that the big players back in the day, 20 years ago, food and wine, the people that had the print magazine still carry so much clout and credibility, and they’ve just moved to online. But those aren’t people that are out there looking at your Instagram account for your business to find those products. So, it is like a different threshold to get into them. Right? So what you’re telling me if I understand this correctly is that although media is more accessible for all of us to view and posts on media, the threshold of getting into the big media outlet still requires the lists, the business development relationships, the capabilities to actually make that happen. Right? So, it’s still a little unattainable for most people on their cell phone.
Megan Bennett: Yeah, it is. It’s unattainable because you don’t have the right context. Now, if you have the drive and the passion to do it, you can do it. Anybody can do it, but it takes a certain personality to deal with so much rejection because you get it every day.
Tim Jordan: Yeah. Well, and I suspect that there’s other reasons to be rejected. So it’s not just about tenacity, but also product. And I want to get that in a second, but let me first talk about why this is important and let me preface it by saying most of our audience, they’re platform, sellers, Amazon Shopify, things like that, where we’ve been driving our own traffic, but we know that as great as Amazon is, having 200 plus million people using prime, for example, we can get lost, right? Unfortunately, a Wagyu beef hot dog is not an Amazon product. Right. And, once we’ve kind of spent all the energy that we can getting page placement for certain keywords on Amazon. Now we need the offsite traffic. We need the external traffic. We need those other eyeballs. So we, as e-commerce sellers are always looking for a new way to market our product, right. And whether that’s driving them to our website, driving them to an Amazon listing, whatever it is. So the reason I think this is powerful is because we do have to come up with these ways to drive traffic. So what I’d like for you to Megan has talked to me about, and you can use examples or whatever, additional examples, talk about the power of driving awareness to a brand, regardless of whether it’s an Amazon brand, a Shopify brand multi-platform brand, whatever. Let’s talk about the power of getting eyeballs through one of these credible sources onto your product.
Megan Bennett: It’s I think the most important thing, listen, if you’re starting to brand and you have a low budget, PR is a way to go to start building that brand awareness. Sometimes it doesn’t drive sales. And we tell all of our clients were like, if you’re looking to hire us to drive sales, then don’t because we cannot guarantee that even if you get on the Today Show, you might not get any sales. It’s going to depend on who’s watching the show, who wants to buy your product at the time. But regardless of if you don’t get any sales being on the Today Show and having that crowd of credibility to put on your website, to give to future retailers that you want to carry your brand, that’s what’s going to create the sell through right there. And I think it’s like very, very important to build that brand awareness because then consumers are going to know, Oh, I read about that somewhere. I saw that in parent’s magazine, or I saw that on the Today show. And then they’re going to say like, this is a legit product, and it’s going to make them want to try it over another brand that might be similar, but doesn’t have any credibility. So, I mean, I think that’s the main thing is you want that brand awareness to either help you get more retail distribution. And many of the brands that we work with are at retail. They’re at Whole Foods, they’re at Sprouts, they’re at Amazon, and they want the print. Some of those are still old school. They still want to see that you were in shape, the actual shape magazine or that you were in GQ rather than online. And it might not drive sales, but they use that to help them get the distribution. And also to have the retailers, whether it’s online or in store, continue to keep their brands where they are. We also use it like some of the brands want to highlight Amazon. So if we get a segment on a national TV show, we make sure that the show mentions Amazon. We try to do Amazon and the website so that they do both, most of the clients, if they have to choose between their website and Amazon, they’re going to choose their website because they want to be able to track who comes and who buys and sales and all that stuff that way too. But it really just depends on the client. It’s important though that you have your own website besides Amazon, because you need a place for people to go to educate themselves on the brand and also to make your brand look legitimate.
Tim Jordan: Yeah. I think that one thing I’ve learned is not just that you have to have the best listing and the best offer, but to really go to the next level, you have to have credibility, right? So I use press releases for a lot of different things. And even if it’s like the back end of Yahoo finance in their marketing department, like just having that name Yahoo and that– it really, really helps. And making that transition from being a Shopify seller, an Amazon seller to a brand owner, you have to have some of that stuff. So, I’m bought in Megan, like I’m convinced, I know this is powerful. Here’s the problem. Not every product is going to work and you’ve already said it, right? You said, Hey, using a PR firm like yours doesn’t guarantee placement. It just guarantees exposure. So you’re showing this to these different syndicated blogs and magazines and news agencies and all this stuff, but they actually have to like what they see, right? Otherwise you’re just like putting lipstick on a pig, right? It’s still a pig. It’s still a crappy product. So when you’re working with a brand, what are some of– let me take it back. You have worked with a lot of brands. What are some of the biggest mistakes you have seen some of these brands make when they try to use public relations methods to get their brand exposed?
Megan Bennett: I think that one mistake is first of all, trying to be all things to all people like we’ve worked with a lot of skin care brands and most of them are amazing, but the ones that didn’t end up panning out is a, you can’t be all things to all people. If you’re in a saturated market, you have to have a USP, a unique selling proposition. So I think that that’s something that’s really important. And number two, micro-managing PR firms don’t waste your time. If you need us to help you promote your brand, go do something else that you need to focus on because micromanaging, we know what we’re doing, everything that we send out we’re doing for a purpose. So that’s one thing that has been a problem in the past is just being micromanaged to the point that like, I don’t think it’s worth their time. There’s been other mistakes. We’ve given clients advice before and we do, we sometimes we receive negative feedback from the media and we’ll get it from multi, like multiple people will tell us the same thing and we’ll, we’re totally honest and transparent. We let the client know and then they’re defensive about it. And they don’t make the changes that are asked. And that is something that we have seen happen, not to very many of our clients, but it has happened in the past. And you have to listen to the feedback of customers, media, because those are the ones that are going to be like influencing your brand. So, that’s something that I think you need to take constructive criticism and really use that to help fix your brand. Just because you something’s great doesn’t mean that everybody else does. So those are kind of some of the mistakes that we’ve seen. Other like challenges that we’ve had, I guess, would be some of the clients that we work with maybe expect that they’re going to get tons of press within one month of starting a campaign. And usually with most products, like, I’ll give you an example, like vitamins and supplements. It takes at least three months because the media is not going to write about something that they haven’t tested for at least a month. So they have to go through the testing process and they’re getting hundreds of samples. So it’s a massage process and things take sometimes three to six months and sometimes brands aren’t patient enough to wait for it to come into fruition. I guess another challenge is sort of like what I said at the beginning that some brands, even though we explained to them that it’s not necessarily going to drive sales, they still want it to, and then they get frustrated as why isn’t this placement? Why am I not making money from this? Why is there no traffic going to my site? And that’s something that it is challenging. And unfortunately we can’t answer the why’s. We don’t know how to explain why something’s not getting reviewed and other things are, but I will say that like the more constructive criticism that you get, the better your brand is going to become, the more you fix it.
Tim Jordan: Yeah. I’m immediately thinking about like the Today Show or the Good Morning America segments, where they have like those like good or bad, they have a more clever term than that by like good or bad review. And like, I’m having this horror story of like, I spend all this time and energy to get my stuff in front of press and then they review it and it’s a fail. That would be awful. So, I agree with you. I think that a lot of times we get so emotionally convinced that our product’s amazing that we forget, like we built this product to make money. And if we think it’s amazing and everybody else think it sucks, it doesn’t matter. We’re not going to make any money. So, even if I’m convinced that this is the shape this has to be in, if everybody’s telling me, no, you don’t need to be another shape. Listen, don’t be emotionally attached to this product. Be emotionally attached to the concept of making money over it and take the feedback.
Megan Bennett: Yes. And one thing I did forget to mention, or I just, it didn’t even now it’s occurred to me is one other thing is when it comes to emotion. One other thing that is really important as a brand owner and we have had this challenge with a few is that you need to make sure that even if your brand doesn’t have a story is how it’s created. You got to create a story, or nobody’s going to care about the brand. You have to have a reason as to why you created the skincare brand. What are so great about the ingredients? Not just that it has something in it. Why? You can’t be afraid to share your struggles, because that is what is going to get people to empathize with you and be more interested in buying your brand over something that might be cheaper and prettier packaging.
Tim Jordan: And a lot of people, they undervalue their story. Like they think, well, this isn’t handmade by a bunch of Tibetan monks. There’s nothing to tell here. They think this thing isn’t curing cancer, but a lot of times the story isn’t even about the product, it’s about the business. And it could be as simple as, Hey, I’m a single mom that was tired of working at, you know, as a waitress at a restaurant. So I started doing this, right? We can all come up with a story. And if you can’t come up with a story, you can create a story. Look at what Tom’s shoes did. Tom’s shoes is just a crappy canvas pair of shoes, but they create a story, buy a pair, give a pair. And they’re giving away a pair of $1 shoes for every $60 pair that they sell. I know people that work with nonprofits, people that work with groups like the wounded warrior project and all that stuff. So you can create a story. Now, the worst thing you can do, in my opinion, like this, they ought to throw you under the jail is don’t create a story not follow through. There’s people that say, Hey, I’m working to do this and raise money. Don’t be one of those people that make claims percentage of proceeds are going to this and don’t do it too. All right. So, as a side note, what is one of the weirdest or most entertaining products that you have tried to put to media and gotten some crazy feedback from?
Megan Bennett: It’s one of my favorite brands and we still work with them. It’s called BallWash.
Tim Jordan: That’s amazing. Please continue.
Megan Bennett: Hope this is show appropriate because you should. I want you to meet these people. It’s freaking awesome. But it’s a brand that is for your precious jewels down below. It is a wash for your balls. And, I saw the brand, I think we’ve been with them for like two years. I was just flipping through some Instagram ads. And I’m like, this is the most amazing concept. It’s like calling a spade a spade. It is what it is. And like, they revolutionized the category and I reached out and I’m like, I really want to promote your brand. I think we can get tons of media to cover this. And so they hired us and we’ve been with them ever since. And we’re pitching them below the belt, grooming care every month. Sometimes we get people responding, saying, I cannot believe that you would send this to me. Please remove me. Don’t ever contact me again. And then half the time it’s like, Oh my God, I need this for my boyfriend. Please send this right away. We’ll do a review. It’s just crazy. So, I would say that one is totally off the walls balls to the wall crazy. But it’s a cool company. They do amazing marketing. And they have like they’re doing something for November right now where a prof, like they have a ball wash that goes to sales. It’s a really like smart, smart company. And so, yeah, I would take something as crazy as that on, and guess what men all over the country and women are buying it because it’s a product that people need. So, yeah, that’s a really crazy fun example. And I love to tell people that we represent them because sometimes the shock is like, and then it’s like, where can I buy that?
Tim Jordan: There’s a brand that I follow their marketing for a while called Manscaped, I’m sure you’re familiar with them. And they do the same thing. It’s just trendy, catchy. They’ve got a hair clipper they call the Lawn Mower. It’s just amazing, amazing marketing. Another one that’s similarly, some of their product isn’t as taboo, but some of their marketing’s a little inappropriate is called bird dog shorts. Have you seen these guys?
Megan Bennett: Oh, yes. I’ve totally seen. I almost bought some for my husband. It looks cool.
Tim Jordan: I absolutely love their marketing and they even did some funny stuff. They took some bad press and turned it into great press. They pitched on Shark Tank and Mark Cuban just ate them for lunch. Just tore them a new one. And now half of their advertising is quotes for Mark Cuban talking about their products. Right. It’s hilarious. So long story short folks, if you even think you have like the weirdest most off the wall product, that is very, very niche that like the big press agencies or the big influential groups aren’t interested in, Hey, they are interested in shampoo for your balls. There’s always a story to be told, right?
Megan Bennett: Hundred percent. A hundred percent.
Tim Jordan: Right now, the editors are listening to this, going did Tim just say, “shampoo for your balls?” I did say shampoo for your balls. All right. Actually, Megan said it first, you can blame her. All right. So moving on, I want you to give some advice. All right. Those that are listening here have been completely derailed and they’re still rolling their eyes at the last comment. But moving forward, we’ve talked about the power of press. We’ve talked about some mistakes that have been made. I’d like to hear a few pieces of guidance that you would give to people if they are selling a brand. And they’re thinking about making their move into some sort of press distribution system, what are some of the steps that they need to take now to get ready? And when do they know they’re ready to do this?
Megan Bennett: Okay. So you know you’re ready to start, or we’re ready to promote. Or if you’re ready to self-promote, you got to make sure that first of all, you have got samples available. You cannot promote or start doing stuff unless you want to tease a brand. But with the media, we can’t send anything until you have physical samples that you can get into your hands. You’re a jewelry line. You can send a sample and then have a return envelope. If it’s too expensive, just send back, but you have got to have something to get into their hands. Number two, you have to have really good assets, high res photos, beautiful white background images, because the digital print, they all want to see beautiful photos that sometimes they don’t have time to take their own. And so they just pop them right into the story. You’ve got to have, if you’re going to hire a PR firm, you’ve got to have a budget, at least for three months, I would say because that’s how long it takes to really start to see the press coverage and the placements come in. You need to have a method of getting the samples to the media. Most of the brands we work with, they have a distribution house and like most importantly, you’ve got to have a stellar website, that information about the brand, Q and A, you need to have, if you have like an expert that you could put there, a story behind the brand and about us. And that is what is really going to drive people to look and get more product information about your brand. And then you have to have a story and then we’re ready to go. We are ready to promote you to the media.
Tim Jordan: So, let’s talk about persistence and tenacity. You said that part of your job as being able to accept rejection. And I’d like to talk about that a little bit with press. If I’ve got a normal product, what kind of percentage of feedback do I get that’s even positive enough to say like, yeah, go ahead and send me a sample. There was just like very, very few people that even look at these emails or promos ever even respond at all?
Megan Bennett: I would say that if you’re going to email a hundred people, you’re going to hear back from at least a fifth of them. And the main point is that if you don’t, then email them again. And if you don’t, then email them again and change your subject line, it’s all about what you put in that email and what your subject line is. That’s what’s going to get the media to open up your email in the first place. And then don’t attach a press release. Nobody cares. Nobody’s going to read a press release. You attach a short email that asks a question, gets them looped in, gives a short elevator pitch about your brand and then has a picture. You need a picture because they immediately look at the image. That’s what’s going to get them to respond and write you back and ask for more.
Tim Jordan: So, let me rephrase the question now. All right. I know that not many people are responding to this. You get, you get a lot of no’s, right? Business in general is about second guessing ourselves. Right? When you’re putting out a product and everybody’s saying no, but you’re convinced that this product is a yes. How do you stop listening to those external no’s and keep pushing forward and have the confidence to know that like, you can get this thing moving. Where do you find that source of encouragement? Because for me, if I’m told no four fifths at the time, man, I’m ready to go lock myself in a closet, curl up on the floor in the fetal position. Right. But you’re happy with one fifth of them saying, okay, maybe so where do you get that courage and power?
Megan Bennett: I look at the product again. And I think I use it again. And then I think like, what else is good about this? What else, what other angles can I pitch for this product? Because this is not working. So I try something different. I just try a different angle. I try, maybe I tie something in topical, something that’s going on, add it to a holiday gift guide pitch. Find another subject another way than just pitching. You need to check out this amazing cup. I don’t know. You’ve got to find other ways. Are you covering recyclable aluminum? There’s different ways to just keep going and finding. I mean, some of the brands that we work on, it’s like the same one product that we’re pitching every single month. So we’ve got to ways to like, keep spinning it. Just keep going. You can’t, if you know that what you have is amazing and you truly believe in the product, then somebody else will too. And all it takes is one person. And then that’s going to give you the confidence to be like, okay, reader’s digest. Just covered this. I know I can get another magazine to do this because they’ve done it. And then you just spin it again. I just, I truly believe. And also when I work with brands and they’re like, we worked with another firm and we didn’t get one placement and I’m thinking, are you joking? I don’t care how bad your brand is. We can get you some placements. It doesn’t matter. There is a way to spin anything. I truly, truly believe that. So, that’s how I take rejection. I just say, you know what, I’m going to try something else. They say no to this. They’re going to say yes to something else. And the more that I reach out when they do have something relevant, guess who they’re going to come to me because they’re so sick of me that they remember me.
Tim Jordan: So, aside from the testicular wash, right? What are some examples of memorable brands that you’ve represented where you immediately get good results, right. And when I say good results, good responses. And when you think about those, are they typically based on the product themselves, the story, or is it timing, like if you could look back at the ones you’re like, man, I got immediately great responses. Can you pinpoint a pattern of why that happened?
Megan Bennett: I mean, I will give one example. It’s not a product, but it is a nonprofit. And I mean, right there, it had such a good story. They had video to show the brand. It’s just that to me, we got them on the Today Show within, it had been almost a year because we tried regional and regional coverage is really what worked, but getting them on the Today show is just, that’s what launched that completely kicked off the brand. And they made like a quarter of a million dollars to have donations. So I would say that you just know, like once in a while, there’s something that you pitch. For example, we work with a CBD brand and it’s incredible. It’s one of the top in the country. We’ve been with them for three years. They were one of the innovators in the whole category. And it was started by a combat veteran who basically like did it out of his garage. And now it’s huge that they do everything in house. And I think that the media was so into the fact that it was started by a combat veteran who had that experience because he’d worked at other, he knew how to do the extractions. And because it was one of the first of its kind and also because of the packaging and what the product, like I had taken it. And so I said, this is a brand that I really love. And CBD was so hot right then. And it was just emerging. It just blew up. We got so many, it was like, boom, we got so much press to start. It was such a good case study because it was something that was new. And I don’t know, it’s just, they did everything right.
Tim Jordan: That’s awesome. So as we kind of thinking about wrapping up those of you that are still tuned in and listening to this, I want to make sure that we have some next steps for you, right? Some, Hey, here’s some steps that you need to make sure that you’ve got in place. We talked about inventory, we talked about assets, so unfortunately if you’ve got a product with an Amazon listing and six Amazon compliant photos up, you’re probably not ready. The other thing, you know, what we’ve talked about is what if this thing goes big and what if it goes viral? What if Buzzfeed picks it up or the Today Show picks it up and you don’t have very much inventory, right? So this is not something that you’re going to do when you initially launch an Amazon typical Amazon product, white tier, a little bit more mature. You’ve got some of those things in place. So inventory assets, photographs, videos, a brand story, a great website, right? Because if somebody goes to a website that some janky weebly piece of crap website up there, they’re going to be like, drop it. You’ve got to look credible, right? Because when these brands push your stuff, they’ve got to make sure that it doesn’t negatively influence them. Whether they’re affiliate sellers, there better be inventory. And whether they’re just like the Today Show. They’re not going to push some weak looking company that doesn’t have their ducks in a row. Right? So, again, this isn’t something for very, very basics. It is something for a little more advanced brands, right. Stuff that has people that have stuff together. The last thing I want to talk about briefly is we’ve talked about brand recognition exposure. The other thing that press releases do is they really, really boost your SEO. This is what I’ve used it for in the past, but can you explain briefly the power of SEO that may not ever go public? People may not see this from a public facing view, but press releases have ridiculous SEO power.
Megan Bennett: Yeah. I mean, and not even just press releases, articles that feature your brand. So for example, we’ve worked with SEO companies that we’ve referred because it is really important to do paid SEO, but after we did that segment or after we got that food and wine thing, this is an example, their SEO bumped so high from all those placements because it was from an organic placement. And even the SEO company said, we can do what we can paid, but the most valuable way to get SEO to get at the top is from having like stellar media placements in really, really, really big sites like food and wine, or to be on the Today Show. Or if you search a brand and they have publicity and you search them the big buzz feed stories, those are the ones that are going to come up at the top of your search so that it really helps. And you can tell that it’s not paid. And that’s the best part about it is that you look at a brand’s review just authentically. So it’s important for SEO to have publicity along with the paid side of it.
Tim Jordan: And my point to that is even if you go through the process of getting your brand or your product, your story out to media, and it doesn’t blow up huge, it doesn’t end up on Today Show. Remember that the investment is working behind the scenes for you because it’s giving you SEO love and traction and all that stuff that you may not see and be able to quantify immediately, but it is working within the intro web to help you build your brand presence and all that good stuff. The other thing that does is the next time one of these media outlets is pitched. They see that you have some sort of brand press base, right? You already have a little bit of a presence which helps make you more credible for next time. So again, it’s a marathon, it’s not a race, but I firmly believe in the power of press. And Megan, I really appreciate you coming in and sharing all this with us. So, if people wanted some more information, some kind of how to get started, where would they go about finding your company and ways in which you can help them?
Megan Bennett: So, my company is lightyearsahead.com, or you can just reach out to me via email at [email protected] And I’m happy to talk, give you advice or whatever.
Tim Jordan: Awesome. I’m writing that down for myself. I’ve got a product that I’ll have to hit you up for. All right, guys. Thanks for listening. As I always say, if you’re watching YouTube, thumbs up. If you’re watching on one of the main podcast platforms, give us a review, give us a like, and we will see you guys on the next episode. Thanks.
Megan Bennett: Thanks guys.