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BEHIND THE SCENES The Importance of Integrations, Part I: The Opportunity

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PR is about measurement – you need and are expected by clients to measure everything. Creating opportunities that provide a direct link to products sold, clicks on a site, lead generation – things that can actually be measured from Point A (PR) to B (customer action) – make clients happy. Lately, we are finding tremendous opportunities for these measurable results through national media integrations.

Occasionally these integrations are giveaways. Until the show went off the air, Oprah was the queen of giveaways but the power of her endorsement was unparalleled. Some promotional giveaways can still be still influential but giveaways without a segment placement or on-air mention from the host (like on The View or Ellen) are not integrations but targeted sampling.

Fuller integrations offer something more. Some are pay for play and are best suited to clients who can afford to be fully involved to a show. For example, last season, we connected a client with “Dr. Oz” and his “Truth Tube” which turned into an even bigger commitment to this season’s “Transformation Nation.” The client got six branded segments on the show and online as well as a thank you from Dr. Oz for being advertisers. Most viewers would not have known it was paid – that’s the beauty of a good integrated segment.

For most clients, the more affordable integration route is a great deal like 50 to 70% off on weekly segments like TODAY’s “Steals & Deals” with Jill Martin and GMA’s “Secret Deals & Steals” with Tory Johnson ( – she also does one for WABC in NYC). These are the most popular of a growing trend – Ellen and Rachel Ray and their online sites also do integrations – in all media nationwide.

For companies that do not have the stories, spokespeople, or news to get standalone segments for their products and services and want immediate impact, these integrations are powerful win-wins, especially for launches. The key is to find a unique offer that’s going to blow the socks off of the audience and connect them to the deal and the brand. You are trying to get customers not dump poor or slow moving merchandise.

Smaller-scale clients can reap big rewards just as much as big ones. We selected Tory Johnson’s segment on GMA to help launch My Publisher’s holiday cards. We followed on Valentine’s Day on TODAY with a new (for My Publisher) voucher offer for photo books. My Publisher called the response to both shows “amazing” and “meaningful.” They also discovered a new way of selling product via those vouchers (which they said was important as the actual sales). Recently, we even tested an integration for a children’s book: Cassandra’s Angel, which sold out and moved the book up the overall B&N and Amazon rankings. Incredible.

And again, the best part? While margins may be thinner than traditional sales and require additional work on the clients’ behalf, the clients do make money and get national TV exposure. These are win-wins brokered by K2. So that begs the question: Why K2? Why is a PR firm best suited to set these integrations up? That’s part two.