The earned media landscape is rapidly changing. It’s evolve or get left behind, and nowhere is this more apparent than in the realm of the outdoor industry legacy brand.
Legacy brands have shaped the outdoor industry and consumer preference trends for decades. However, maintaining relevance for 50-plus years requires adapting to the shifting consumer and media landscapes while striking a storytelling balance between heritage and innovation. Often, this means utilizing PR techniques that go beyond standard product pitching while widening targeted content mediums.
We’re proud to represent many outdoor industry legacy brands. In this blog, we’ve highlighted a handful of strategies we use to ensure these brands stay ahead of the PR curve.
Meet Potential Customers Where They Consume Content
Generating earned video content is a necessity in any PR strategy. Content creators are authorities on new products, developing skills, and engaging storytelling. In fact, research shows consumers trust creators more than they trust brands, turning to them to gather important information before making a purchase.
Both YouTube and TikTok are prime avenues for earned media success. The key word here is earned. It’s unrealistic (and inappropriate) to expect a product-for-content trade to result in a positive product review that hits all of the brand-generated talking points. This isn’t a paid advertisement. Instead, think of these platforms as community and user feedback avenues.
Start with identifying content creators that align with your brand’s ethos and messaging and then offer them product that aligns with their interests with no strings attached. If the product speaks for itself, you will see coverage. This third-party validation and unbiased product education is a powerful brand awareness tool.
Be a Resource
Building long-term relationships will always be key to success in the PR realm. Take the time to be a resource for media personnel and invest in the relationship by establishing a connection, building rapport, and consuming their work. Once you’ve established a relationship, consider offering value in a personalized manner through the following tactics.
1-on-1 New Product Virtual Walk-Thrus
A personalized 10-15 minute virtual walk-thru of a product can provide a wealth of information and opportunity for greater personalization than a standard pitch. This technique establishes an open dialogue and communicates the true value of the product as it relates to specific use cases and audiences.
Tailored Owned Media Repackaging
Story-focused client coverage is a powerful tool to build brand loyalty and advocacy. Outdoor industry legacy brands often excel at creating engaging owned content—but fail to amplify this content beyond their owned channels. Put this content to work and repackage it as a resource and framework for earned media storytelling.
- Rework blog content to present as a tailored story seed that digital editors can build upon.
- Share narrative-driven or educational brand video content (avoid any brand anthem-style videos) with relevant media outlets to be repurposed on their site.
- Offer brand ambassadors/athletes as expert voices, showcasing their knowledge base and amplifying the brand’s reputation.
Personalized Brand Engagement Experiences
Once a relationship is established, design curated one-on-one experiences that contextualize the brand, its products, and the personnel behind the decisions. Regional and state-level Destination Marketing Organizations can often collaborate and help offset costs like travel and lodging, making these experiences more approachable.
The Right Balance for Outdoor Industry Legacy Brands
Designing an outdoor legacy brand PR strategy that harnesses the unique balance of heritage and innovation requires a pulse on the changing media landscape, an understanding of content consumption trends, and a commitment to relationship building. The media landscape is more diffused than ever, and relying solely on traditional outlets, story angles, and outreach techniques leaves opportunities on the table. Learn more about how Darby Communications is helping legacy brands through the services we offer.