Thanks-Giving | Year-Round Public Relations Strategy

When you thank someone, you recognize them for the goodness they bring to your business or your life. When you publicly thank partners, vendors, employees - and of course, clients, your create publicity opportunities for both sides.

Start at the first point of contact

One dreary day I strolled into a splashy gift store. After spending 20 minutes looking around, I walked out empty-handed. On my way out the door, the cashier said, "Have a nice day!" - the only words she said the entire time I was there. Is it any wonder the store was out of business a few months later?

Let your prospects know - right away - you're glad they are there. Bloggers can add a static page or a link to a blog post with a welcome message and a reader's guide. Want to reach local journalists? A phone call, email or comment on their blog might start out with, "Thanks for the story you did on time management. Here's how you helped me." Online PR is a little different. You can't "welcome" search engine spiders, but you can link to a welcoming landing page from your news release.

Keep affirming the relationship

When my hard drive crashed last week, the repair center called to give me a replacement price. I picked it up and didn't check the receipt until a few days later when I saw they charged me for installation, but not the part. Back at the store, the associate took my card and talked about the repair center contact in front of me, but they didn't thank me for buying the hard drive. They were too caught up in their own conversation to notice the customer on the other side of the counter.

Always, always, always email or call with a thank you to someone who mentions or refers your business. Use Google Alerts to track where your name shows up. Bloggers can email people who post a valuable comment and show thanks with links. While there's no need to send a formal thank you note for a Facebook gift app like a cute penguin, you can acknowledge the giver with a quick thank your reply or reciprocate and send them a gift. Online PR continues from the news release to a landing page to an order page to a - you guessed it - thank you page where you can offer additional products [in addition to thanks].

Be Thank-full at Thanksgiving

Stand out from your competition by showing you care with a personalized message to everyone that contributes to your success. This is the time to think big and write a personal note to authors, bloggers, company presidents and yes, your mom for the good things in your life. You know you wouldn't be who you are today without them.

What about you? What or who are you thankful for this year?

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