Hero PR campaigns are the more dramatic campaigns that will drive an elevated level of brand awareness at a larger scale. They are typically strategised across multi-channels for optimum amplification to send a powerful brand message across all audiences.
They’re the campaigns known for going viral – the ones you’re most likely to share with your friends down the pub or retweet to your feed. They aim for viral fame – reaching as far and wide as possible.
In 2015, Google released the hero-hub-help content framework where it outlaid its approach towards ‘hero’ content.
Since then, Google has edited its linking advice time and time again but the concept of useful, unique, relevant content continues to sit at the heart of tactics that are going to drive natural backlinks to sites.
There has been a lot of debate around hero content and campaigns since the pandemic, as PR tactics have become increasingly reactive. The thought of a ‘hero’ campaign can make marketers wary or cautious that too much time, effort or money may be needed for campaigns that focus on the ‘awareness’ stage of the user journey and that may not result in instant results.
In the midst of the debate, there are some key things to think about in favour of hero campaigns.
The downsides of hero campaigns have been aired a lot by the community over the last few years. Some to consider are:
Hero content isn’t always the biggest piece of content but, instead, the boldest. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when it comes to ideating your hero content.
Some formats to consider for your hero content might include:
Go wherever your imagination takes you!
You need to get the look right – like all branded assets. This needs to be done professionally to do the hero content justice and attract attention in the same way traditional media would need to. If you don’t have the budget for a designer or access to someone in-house, there are free tools out there that might work for you including a design platform like Canva, or AI like Dall-E 2.
Ultimately, like all marketing campaigns, your reasons behind it should be relevant to your brand, attractive to a journalist, engaging for a wide audience and bringing added value to the brand and journalists, too.
It’s the uniqueness and originality of your story that’s going to get it to stick when it comes to outreach. It’s the foundation of marketing that campaigns that instigate an emotional response – whether this is crying, laughing, or shocking – are the ones that are going to have success.
Once you’ve created the hero content – this isn’t the end of your story. It’s now time to maximise your return on investment by looking at all the different ways you can use this content, showcase it and build upon it in ways that are going to be useful to the brand and audience.
Some examples of amplifying your hero content include:
The initial brand awareness metrics are what will give you that more instant gratification, seeing if the campaign goes viral, is picked up by journalists in the first round of outreach and begins to get the brand noticed.
As always, don’t worry if you don’t feel the instant value of your work. The investment into this hero content means you can pivot, edit and get more from this work to offer new formats and new angles time and time again – whilst there may be bigger risks with this size of a campaign with it comes bigger rewards in the long run if done properly!
Including Hero Campaigns in your digital pr strategy can make a big difference to both your brand’s awareness and its online performance. As mentioned these types of campaigns can drain your resource, time and investment so we recommend maximising your efforts and repurposing your campaign into lots of different content formats.
If you want to read on, check out our Complete Guide to Content Marketing, or if you need a hand get in touch with us today, we’re a nice bunch and we’d love to help you get the most out of your marketing.