If you plan on getting publicity in the media you need to research which journalists will be interested in the stories you plan to pitch. Start a database adding their names, emails, phone numbers and media outlet they work for. Leave space next to each one so you can note the journalist’s feedback to keep in mind for next time you contact them.
Monthly Archives: February 2018
What’s happening your business isn’t so interesting to the media. Rather than pitching stories to journalists about you (unless it’s an amazing new product that’s going to change the industry) offer information about trends happening in your area of expertise, useful advice or tie in with an upcoming special day (such as international women’s day, valentine’s day etc).
Many business owners shy away from generating their own publicity because they fear journalists won’t want to talk to them. It’s the exact opposite. Journalists are always looking for good stories for their target audience. If you can offer them an idea for a good story it will make it easier for them to meet their deadline and for you to be interviewed in the media.
Email inboxes are often overflowing so you need to ensure your email subject line is catchy enough to grab the journalist’s attention. Use the headline of your media release in the subject line as it will be short, attention grabbing and sum up your story.
Television shows often want your story on an exclusive basis, which means they want to interview you before everyone else does. Approach television journalists and producers first then digital, newspapers, radio and magazines if you want to get your story in all media formats.
Often trade and specialist media are open to publishing content written by you in the form of an opinion piece. Each media outlet will have a specific word count, often 500 words, and a deadline you’re expected to meet. Approach the editor first with a synopsis of your opinion piece as they may provide direction on what angle they want then go ahead and write it once they’ve given the green light.
If you don’t hear from a journalist straight after you send your media release this does not mean they are not interested. They are inundated with media releases and sometimes they might miss seeing yours. This is why the follow up phone call is so important as it makes the journalist aware of your story and they will tell you there and then on the phone if they are interested.
When talking to a journalist never assume you are talking off the record, even after it seems the interview has finished. Always treat your relationship with a journalist in a professional manner and don’t say anything you wouldn’t want them to include in their story
Influencers have a strong following on at least one social platform and will often talk about your product if they really like it. Some will expect payment but others will be happy to simply receive your product. Reach out in an email to them to see if they’d be interested in using your product or service and go from there. Influencers like building relationships just like bloggers do. Remember get to know them on social media and engage with them before you reach out in an email.
If you send a journalist a media release and you get a quick reply email that they are on holidays don’t expect them to read the media release when they get back. A radio producer took a week off work recently and came back to 850 emails in her inbox. The producer deleted them all without glancing at any of them because there were just too many to go through. Send your media release again when they are back from holidays and make sure you follow up with a phone call.