How an after-school snack taught me a PR lesson

I learned a valuable PR lesson from my 10-year-old son today. He needed to do some chores when he got home from school, and I wasn’t here. So I left him a note on the counter with all of the pertinent details. It was a great message, on point and clear as day.

Of course, he didn’t see the note, and I didn’t get the results I wanted.

So I did some research and asked him where I should put future notes so he would see them after school.

Without hesitating, he said, “On the NutriGrain bars.”

Of course, his go-to after-school snack!

And the lesson is, you can have the right message, and be as clear as you want so that when your audience receives it, they act on it. But if you don’t know where your audience is — even if he’s in the same house and walked by the message multiple times — the chances are good they won’t hear it or see it.

Fortunately for me, I was only out a piece of notepad paper and the time it took to write the message. But imagine that you’ve spent money to produce television commercials and bought ad time, and your target audience listens to radio. Or what if you put all your efforts into Facebook and Twitter, and most of your audience is Instagramming?

The takeaway is, do the research on your audience and where they are getting their information. Doing so takes some time before you implement a PR campaign, but in the end it will help you get the results you want.

Especially if your pre-teen is supposed to unload the dishwasher.

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