Should you use PR in the sales process, or just get the close?


Something occurred the other day that made me wonder – should you use PR in the sales process, or just get the close?

My opinion is that PR underlies everything – it’s the “vehicle” of how your target market perceives you.  It doesn’t just stop with a news release, a social media release or what-have-you.  One school of thought is that it pervades your business through and through – sales, presentations, delivery, etc.  Which brings me to something that occurred the other day.  I was invited to a networking event and met an author who co-wrote a book with several other big names.  She was lovely, had a great personality and was very personable – meaning it was easy to talk to her.  I was genuinely interested in her story – I wanted to know how she came to write a book with these renown experts, not being a well-known entity herself?  What’s it about?  Etc. Etc.  But before I asked any of those questions, I asked if she had it for sale anywhere or is she was using it as a promotional tool.  She right off the bat asked me if I’d like an autographed copy.  “Really?  Wow, how generous!  Sure – I’d like that, thank you.”  She then quickly flourished her pen and signed a beautiful note to me and handed me the book….

“That’ll be $20.00.  You can send the money to me later if you don’t have it with you today.”

Huh?  I thought she was giving it to me as a gift!  I did not even know what the book was about.  I had not even had a chance to ask her any of the questions that I had wanted to know…the $20.00 does not matter – it was the situation where I did not even know a-n-y-t-h-i-n-g about the book, I was just introduced to her and next thing you know I felt bamboozled into buying it.  What was I going to say after she signed a copy of her book with my name on it.  It didn’t serve as an initial impression of good PR to me.

In truth, I probably would have ended up buying the book had I been enlightened through some informal sales process…you know, just capitalize on my initial interest.  I was truly interested in her story.  But now I ‘bought’ the book and have no interest in reading it.

So, this begs the question – should you use PR in the sales process, or just get the close?  Let me know what you think!
In PR,
Karla Jo

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