We are stronger as one and the solution lies in the interconnectivity of us all — common pain should lead to common purpose.
Welcome to another installment of our PR Strategy Series, where you can learn directly from top industry experts on how you can leverage media attention to grow your business.
Today we are highlighting parts of a conversation I had over at Authority Magazine with Wendy Watson.
Wendy Watson founded Clearstream Agency LLC in 2015 and is the CEO with more than two decades of experience in the industry. She has directed initiatives for the world’s most well-known companies, including Disney, Hewlett Packard, Marriott, Mercedes-Benz, MGM, Procter & Gamble, Qualcomm, and Verizon.
Watson is a guest lecturer at UCLA Anderson School of Business and has been recognized as an “Inspiring Women in Tech 2019,” honored as one of CEO Today’s “Business Women of the Year”, and was named to PRWeek’s “40 under 40 Stars of PR.” Prior to starting Clearstream, Watson worked for global Omnicom firm Porter Novelli for nearly two decades and during her tenure, she was named the youngest SVP in the company’s history.
Thank you for doing this! Let’s dive right in. Would your PR strategy change much if a client is selling a physical product or has a service-based solution? B2C versus B2B? If so, please share an example or two that might demonstrate any differences.
The PR strategy for B2B and B2C are quite different on one hand, and yet on another hand, the strategic imperative remains similar. For example, the common denominators are that you always want to position the company’s strength and spotlight their innovation to reinforce industry leadership. Engage in multiplatform storytelling. Craft original and curated content to serve as a megaphone for the brand story. Look to ‘fracture the media angles’ in a way that allows you to magnify your message across core content silos, whether that be for consumer-facing targets for B2C or key growth verticals for B2B. Be sure to optimize and explore all media opportunities. Talk about new hires, new deals, new launches, awards, funding announcements, company milestones, etc.
As far as differences are concerned, for a B2C client, the PR strategy leads with the product. The product is king, and we build a story around that. One thing that I have learned is that people don’t buy for the what, they buy for the why, so a company needs to get to the core of its emotional appeal — the why behind the product or service.
For B2B, it is less ‘show and tell’ and more ‘tell and sell.’ Scaling becomes more about industry insight, thought leadership and executive visibility. LinkedIn becomes critical as do bylined pieces on industry expertise and securing speaking opportunities that help our clients engage with new connections within their industry. Trade media presence and business media coverage is paramount for this type of client as well.
One more before we go: If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be?
I firmly believe in the power of a great idea and how it can transform not only a brand, but society as a whole. I see so much polarization in our society right now. Social media has further fueled this division, creating an echo chamber based on one’s likes and follows. We are living in a time where lack of consensus seems to be the only thing that there is real consensus about!
As a PR professional, I would love to start a movement that unifies, not divides. Eliminates the ‘othering’ in our society. We are stronger as one and the solution lies in the interconnectivity of us all — common pain should lead to a common purpose. There have been shades of hope of this during moments of the past year, but we need sustainable long-term results that come from rising above our differences and focusing on solutions.
Thank you for sharing so many insights with us!