You want your company in the news, but all anybody seems to be talking about is Beyoncé’s “Lemonade” or Steph Curry or the presidential campaign. How the heck are you supposed to share news and get heard when you’re competing for space against this stuff?
Here’s the easy answer: Don’t compete.
Behind every one of these topics live hundreds of angles you can use to tie your company in. And here’s the great part: You can go serious — with actual policy and tie-ins to your company values (if your brand allows for fun, and I hope it does) — or you can take a humorous approach.
Let’s pretend we’re an insurance company, and one of our core initiatives is health. If we’re going to preach it to our customers (to, ahem, lower health-care costs overall), then we’d better live it internally. Our goal is to find a connection between one of those major topics and our company value.
For this example, we’ll take our commitment to health and tie it to Beyoncé.
To start, take your national topic and do word association. Give yourself 60 seconds to brainstorm. All ideas are good ideas. (This is not really true — but it allows you the freedom to get a little weird, and you need to get a bit weird to connect two seemingly disparate things.)
Let’s go — 60 seconds on the clock, and we’re going to put down whatever words come to mind when we think about Beyoncé. They don’t have to be true. They have to be what you think of. GO. Put a ring on it. Destiny’s Child. Gorgeous. Expensive face stuff. Lotions. Confident. Jay Z. Dancer. Fit. Weights. Yoga. Nutrition. Healthy food. Workouts. Water.
Everybody needs it. Drinking water is a simple act that can positively affect our health, but we know millions of us still fall way short of the recommended intake.
Google it: Beyoncé + water.
Booyah. We get this.
Beyoncé drinks a gallon of water a day.
And … Make It Happen
Now that you have your connection between pop culture and your company’s value, push a small campaign out to your associates. “Drink it like Beyoncé.” I don’t know, I’ll leave that to my copywriters.
Next, create a quick chart that employees can use to mark their water intake. Make it a competition, and have the nonparticipants dance to a Beyoncé song at a company meeting. (Yes folks, shaming still works.) Have your CEO read the lyrics of one of her songs Chris Hemsworth style. (P.S. If you look like Chris Hemsworth, this will work even better.)
Just. Have. Fun.
After 30 days you can track some actual quotes from associates, who (hopefully) report they’re feeling better, and maybe confirm the weight loss benefits from increased water intake, etc. Then, you get to pitch it to the media.
And I promise you, when you pitch an editor on “Company takes tips from Beyoncé’s health plan,” their ears are going to perk up a lot more than if you had approached the health initiative with “Top 10 exercises you can do at your desk.”