T-swizzle is one of the most powerful women according to Fortune’s most recent list and stole the spotlight as one of the most powerful women in entertainment this year too, according to Forbes. There’s certainly a reason that she’s such a powerful entertainer, which means there’s a lot we can learn from her in life and in business. From who she has become as a person, the decisions she made along the way, to the lyrics of her music — this girl has a lot of “lessoned learned” and plenty of advice to give.
If you think about it, she is a writer just like us, expressing almost all of her personal experiences through music. She takes her songs and the people who inspire them “on a case-by-case basis,” never really able to tell what is to come next.
This is exactly what we do in PR as we approach programs for new clients and new product launches. We can’t foresee the outcome, but we can do our best to prepare ourselves for it and make it a success. Each product launch you promote in your career will be a learning experience and will help prepare you for the next one.
CES, the baby boom of product launches, is just around the corner. To make sure your product launch is on track, you can take a closer look at these three T-Swift lyrics below:
“Cause Darlin I’m a Nightmare Dressed like a Daydream”
An important factor of any launch is to prepare yourself for the end result from the start. You and your clients have the same goal of getting positive coverage in the Wall Street Journal, but this isn’t always the case. Be completely honest with your clients about the quality of the product you’re launching, the competitor product quality and set expectations now. Offering early interviews before a launch is a great way for your client to get their product message across and establish relationships with media while addressing any negative factors of the product.
“The Rest of the World Was Black and White but We Were Screaming Color”
Similar to how you always want the newest iPhone, reporters always want something new; something unique to make their stories stand out from the rest of the crowd. In this case, a product that is unlike any other on the market, a unique quote, or exclusive interview with your client. Take time during meetings and weekly calls with your clients to brainstorm what they are doing differently from competitors and other businesses in general. Do a competitive report to find out what your clients biggest competitors might be lacking in their products so you can capitalize on the unique features of your client’s new product. Always try to offer something unique but create a clear strategy of how you will offer this and who you will offer this to.
“Cause Baby Now We Got Bad Blood”
It’s no secret that Taylor and Katy Perry have been involved in a cold and awkward feud over the past few years. I hate to say it, but in PR these types of feuds can also happen, whether you are the best media relations person on your team, or just learning how to pitch.
Every time you work on pitching the launch of a new product be mindful of what you can and cannot promise reporters. You can prepare for this by speaking with your clients prior to the launch to discuss how many products you can share with media contacts, which media contacts or publications you can share a product with, and which publication will get an exclusive. For example, your product could be sold at retail for $1000 so your client might be selective by only agreeing to send product to top-tier reporters on their wish list. This means you need to be thoughtful about who you’re offering a product to.
In some cases, you will get inbound requests from media not even on your pitch list that want to test a product themselves. Take the time to fully vet these types of requests out so you can provide a clear recommendation to your client. Sometimes this means you will have to gently let someone down but do this carefully and clearly so there’s no “bad blood” in the future when you might need to work with this reporter or blogger again. As you know, media contacts are constantly moving to different publications so the chances you will cross paths again are pretty high.
Now finally, “Shake It Off!” You’ve done the best you can. It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you have clear goals and a strategy in place for blowing your product launch out of the park.