3 PR lessons learned from Santa Claus

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Time to brave the crowds at the mall, wrap up all of the presents, and hope that your name made it on Santa Claus’ nice list.

Not a believer in Santa Claus? That’s okay, it means more presents for me.

Even if you are old enough to know the truth about Santa Claus, you can still learn valuable PR lessons from him.

In the spirit of the holiday season, here are a few.

Make a list, then check it twice

In the fast-paced world of PR, making lists is very important. Especially when you are dealing with a variety of different journalists and media opportunities at one time.

We all know from childhood stories that Santa Claus makes a list and checks it twice. In fact, he has both naughty and nice lists!

Why? So of all the children he needs to deliver presents to receive the appropriate present chosen for them. And that no one, even the naughty kids, gets overlooked.

The same is necessary for PR success. To send out a press release to the media, creating a media list is a must.

With a media list, you can ensure you don’t send the announcement twice to the same journalist or more than once to the same media outlet.

A media list also helps record the responses you receive from your outreach efforts to determine who you should follow up with.

Not sure how to get started creating a media list? You can find a free media list template here.

Once you have your media list pulled together, make sure to check it twice. The right media list will ensure that you only share your news with media contacts who will find your content useful and avoid spamming those who do not.

Plan and deliver

It takes a significant amount of planning to get toys to every good boy and girl in the world in one night, which is why Santa Claus has a plan prior to his first delivery on Christmas Eve.

Being able to plan accordingly and then delivering on your promises are key to PR success.

If you have promised a reporter information or an interview, you need to fulfill this commitment prior to the reporter’s deadline.

Any outreach to the media requires a lot of planning and preparation to ensure you have the appropriate information, it’s accurate, and ready for the public before the deadline.

If you’re not organized, you could miss out on a huge media opportunity. Which is the fastest way to get your name to the top of the Santa’s naughty list.

Struggling to get organized or feeling overwhelmed? We all can relate. Building your brand’s reputation can be daunting, and it is not something that can be achieved overnight.

A long-term PR strategy can raise your profile and get your brand seen by your target audience. The most important step, however, is that you get started.

Here’s a free PR plan template to help get you on your way to PR greatness.

Be jolly

The phenomenon of Santa is one that embodies the spirit of giving, kindness, happiness, and helping those who are less fortunate.

Channel that jolliness in all your PR efforts. Mimic Santa’s spirit in how you treat your media contacts. Always use kindness and respect.

The holidays are the perfect time to show kindness to the media, especially the contacts you frequently interact with and who regularly publish stories that benefit you.

It’s as simple as sending them a thank you email and handwritten card.

It also is important to remember that even when pushed to the brink with competing priorities, less than stellar attitudes from others, and impending deadlines, your bad day isn’t someone else’s responsibility. Never let them see you sweat. Or upset.

Be Santa jolly in all your interactions—especially with the media.

Happy Holidays from Hearsay! 

Want more helpful tips like the ones above plus more? Check out The Buzz: A Media Darling’s Guide to Press Coverage or sign up for exclusive Hearsay content.