I came across an article about beginner’s luck, and whether or not it exists in public relations. I think many businesses have had a streak of beginner’s luck with favorable results – but while results may be high right out of the gate, it may actually work against you too. Here is a prime example from the Business 2 Community article:
A colleague decided to start up a brand new business after his old one sort of trickled out. While the “old” business was selling lawn care products, the new one was actual lawn maintenance my friend did himself. He had gotten word people in his community needed help beautifying the area after a severe drought, so he thought he would pounce.
His PR idea was to pounce on every community board he could find and talk about lawn care. If there was a Facebook page for a community or a city event, he was there talking about his new business or just lawns in general. He scoured the Internet looking for people who might mention the city and surrounding areas and how to handle grass and such there.
Now normally this kind of thing takes a while. Sure, people needed help, but just talking about it doesn’t always help. But for whatever reason – tenacity, passion, the drought, or something else – he struck a nerve. His business took off in no time. He had experienced real beginner’s luck in that the first time he tried a PR tactic for his business it succeeded – a rarity.
Unfortunately, this story doesn’t have the happiest of endings, at least for my friend’s business. You see, while he had unexpected early success with his campaign, the follow-up was a bit of a dud. And the follow-up to that was an even bigger dud. People got tired of seeing this guy’s name pop up all over talking about lawn care. Eventually, people realized they just didn’t need his help with their lawns anymore and that was that.
Effective public relations comes from strategic planning, time and some trial and error. When you have “beginner’s luck,” you don’t have the opportunity to be strategic and you run the risk of a burnout. One of the perks of working with a public relations team (whether that be in-house or with a firm), is that your business has the ability to strategically look at what type of tactics work well to promote your business. Whatever the case, if you find yourself in a good public relations cycle, take time to step back and plan your next move so you don’t run into trouble.