The Benefits of Public Relations and Publicity
For high-end products and services, like business jets and private air charter, public relations, can be a valuable marketing tool. The subtle benefit of public relations and publicity is when when someone sees your product or service in the media, there is an implied third-party impartial endorsement. It’s almost like the media is saying:
This company is good because we have analyzed it. We like their products and services they provide. Their core values are great. We think you should give them a try.
Simply by virtue of this unspoken endorsement, public relations coverage makes people more likely to buy/try/invest in your product or service. People want to be part of “it” – whatever “it” is.
This kind of publicity can sometimes result in a brand acquiring a cult status, especially among sophisticated buyers, who don’t want to buy what everyone else buys. They don’t shop Wal-Mart or K-Mart. They’re “elites” and are looking for a unique brand experience – and they expect to PAY MORE because they want their experience to be better and different from the common, everyday experiences of the masses.
Public Relations Coverage Implies an Impartial Endorsement by the Media
If a brand is getting a lot of good publicity and developing a core group of devoted followers, they might want to consider curtailing their advertising, or stopping it all together. A brand can be thought of a too “mainstream” if they advertising becomes too ubiquitous. Brands that have a cachet can profitably stay off the mainstream “radar” by enjoying the loyal following of those who relish being part of a unknown, undiscovered brand.
In many cases, upscale brands can significantly damage their cachet if their advertising appears too frequently or in too many media outlets. IZOD Lacoste polo shirts learned this valuable lesson the hard way. IZOD was very popular with the golf and tennis set in the 1980s.
The brand soon became wildly popular and “mainstream” – it seemed that everyone was wearing apparel with the alligator logo. However, because of the brand’s overexposure in its advertising and its own popularity, in a few years it quickly lost its cachet and sales dropped dramatically.
But because everything old becomes new again, a new audience is rediscovering the brand. This time Lacoste is keeping the price point upwards of $100, which maintains it aspirational brand status and Lacoste is choosing to market the brand virally and eschew any mass advertising.