Just because you’re a solo PR pro doesn’t mean you’re in this alone. There’s a whole community of like minded people you can lean on.
In this monthly series, we ask five Solo PR Pro members to share their best tips, tricks and resources for managing their solo business.
How 5 solo PR pros are planning for 2021
This month, we asked our panel of solo PR pros to tell us how they are planning for the year ahead.
Read on for their helpful tips.
1. Stephanie Driscoll, Principal, Blue Fog Communications
To plan for 2021, I am making sure I continue to be active on all social channels, most importantly LinkedIn. This allows me to stay visible among potential prospects and keep a healthy new business pipeline.
In planning for a new year, I always pick one or two ways to invest back into my business. Next year I will be updating my website and participating in several training courses. As a solo, I always prioritize training courses each year to stay present in a fast-moving industry.
2. Maren Minchew, Founder, MMPR
I am a planner at heart, so planning for 2021 has many facets for me — planning for my business, planning for my clients and then personal planning and goal setting.
I started planning for 2021 in October. I identified areas of my own communications that could be tightened up, set 2-3 business development goals for the year and created a plan for my five year anniversary happening in April. For the first time since I started my business, I am treating myself like a client and have a solid plan in place. Additionally, I have identified ways to expand current client accounts and set up planning sessions with them throughout November.
With the current environment being so uncertain, planning for the full year is tough. I have done a lot of “worst case scenario” planning to be prepared for anything and am only developing quarterly plans since things could rapidly change at any time. My planning motto for 2021 is hope for the best, plan for the worst and expect nothing.
3. Sandra Fernandez, Director of Communications, Big Oak Tree Media
The most important thing that I’ve learned in 2020 is that promoting myself and my business has to be one of my top priorities. I’m preparing for 2021 by treating Big Oak Tree Media as if it were one of my clients. This includes regular check-ins on a public relations strategy and ongoing activities to help expand our visibility.
This year has reminded me that we can’t take our own public relations for granted. We’ve increased our social media footprint, presenting to industry and business groups, and positioning ourselves as experts in several topics. And we’re looking for new ways to improve the way we promote ourselves.
4. Janine Krasicky Sadaj, President, J9 Media Solutions
To get ready for 2021, I’m reviewing and evaluating my business plan to decide what adjustments to make. I reflect on our clients and the type of work I’ve done to decide what changes would enhance our portfolio.
Since starting up in 2003, I’ve aimed for a diverse client portfolio of nonprofits and mission based organizations, as well as automotive and technology companies. Diversification especially helped in 2020 since not every industry we serve paused when COVID-19 hit. I also work with my CPA to do tax planning and revisit my business development and networking plan for J9 Media Solutions.
5. Michael Ares, Principle Owner, MDA Corporate Marketing, LLC
I’m looking at planning for 2021 with an eye towards what I believe will be continued uncertainty in the markets my key target audiences serve: higher education, early stage start-ups and large multinational corporations. Yes, the second-biggest cause of uncertainty — the election — seems to have been decided, but the biggest cause of uncertainty by far, COVID-19 remains largely unchecked. As sanity and science re-emerge, progress will be made that will impact all of these market segments in positive, yet challenging ways.
How? I believe the toughest challenge my clients and prospects face is how to shift from a defensive position — entirely understandable over the past eight months — to a more proactive, forward-looking posture that will continue their recovery, build their stability and fuel their future growth. As I do, I am trying to accomplish the same shift for my own business.
We want to hear from you! How are you planning for 2021? Leave your response in the comments section below or tag us on social media using #solopr.