The Importance of Shameless Self-Promotion

Besides a love of scuba, there’s one thing we all have in common: we don’t brag about ourselves enough. On the dive boat is one thing, but out in the real world, we dive instructors are all too humble. This is where public relations comes in.

As dive professionals, we do interesting and newsworthy things all year long. A one-page write up (aka press release) can turn into a lot of free promotion for your business. Here are a few examples:

ice divingBellingham scuba instructor heads to Alberta to attain ice diving certification

When Gone Diving owner Charlynn Sutton received her Ice Diver Instructor rating, she emailed her story and some photos to her local newspaper and voila! Her story ran in the local paper and on the newspaper’s website.

Here’s another example from A-2-Z Scuba in Puyallup, WA:

Volunteer divers to perform underwater clean up project

When A-2-Z Scuba organized a clean up of the Les Davis Pier in Tacoma, they spread the word with local media. By providing advance notice, owner Amy Rhodes secured coverage on two network television stations in addition to the local paper.

If you’re not already using PR to promote your business, here are some ideas:

Promote your underwater clean-up: invite local media to cover the event. Include interesting facts such as: expected # of participants or unusual items collected during previous clean-ups. Be sure and send out a post clean-up email with similar information and photos.

Invite someone from your local paper to your next AWARE or AWARE Coral Reef class. If there isn’t a specific travel writer, cruise the newspaper’s website for the next-closest job title (such as lifestyle editor). Even if you don’t receive a write-up, you could become the go-to interview person for the local marine environment or resort travel.

Host a fundraiser – it’s a sad fact that public schools do not have enough money to run extra-curricular activities. Parter with a local school to host a fundraiser such as a dive for dollars night. Create DSD vouchers for students to sell and donate the proceeds (minus pool rental if applicable). Invite local media to cover the event and create incentives for students who can “close the deal”on Open Water classes.

. . . and speaking of shameless self-promotion: check out the PADI ad we’ll have in the NBA Finals program!

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