Founder of international agency Believe Advertising & PR | Best-Selling Author.
Gaining the attention of the media can be difficult with increasing competition to get companies publicized. As a founder of an international publicity agency, I use these six tactics to increase the chances of my clients receiving media recognition and coverage across the globe.
1. Know What Media Professionals Value
Stay informed about what’s trending in the news and take note of what media professionals look for in stories. If you understand and can provide what they value, you’re more likely to receive coverage.
Media professionals tend to look for the following:
• Proximity. Does your company impact its audience and its environment in any way?
• Prominence. Is your business contributing to a trend or something that is popular or significant to the media outlets you want to reach?
• Positivity. Is your business impacting or altering the lives of the public in a positive way?
• Pivots. Has your business had to turn things around on short notice to survive? For example, have you had to change how your business operates during the pandemic? Have you begun offering a new product? Are you servicing new markets?
• Personability. Is there anyone at your company who is especially unique and would attract the media’s attention with their actions and contributions?
Focusing on these elements can help you ensure that the story you’re pitching will be valuable enough to gain the media’s attention.
2. Form A Fantastic Pitch
When trying to reach a media outlet, give them enough information to completely understand what you want publicity for, but keep the information concise so it can be easily scanned by a journalist. I’ve found that short but thorough bullet points work best.
Clearly state your credibility upfront and why you deserve the journalist’s time to assist them in making an informed decision.
3. Check Your Facts
Your press release can make or break your chances of getting publicity. Make sure all press releases are easy to read with correct dates, times and locations as well as a purpose that aligns with what media professionals value. Check for any holes and missing information that would leave journalists wondering. At the bottom of your press release, provide a list of contact information for you and your company so journalists can call and inquire about the information on the release.
4. Know The Nuances Of Each News Outlet
Familiarize yourself with the types of stories your desired outlet tends to publish. Identify specific openings for consistent features, guest columns and interest areas, and then contact the media outlet to see whether your organization can fill any of these openings.
Get to know the reporters who cover, edit and manage the area you seek to gain media attention in. This also helps you identify who to contact to get the quickest, most informed response to your pitch and coverage for your business.
5. Keep In Touch
Stay in touch with the media outlet you want to gain attention from by consistently reaching out to them with newsworthy information, and recognize and republish the stories the media outlet published for you (as long as you’re not infringing on any copyrights).
Remember that journalists are busy people, so make sure you are always available to answer their calls and emails. When following up with them, do it only once. There’s nothing worse than someone who keeps emailing or calling a journalist, especially when they’re on deadline, to check whether they received a press release.
6. Offer An Exclusive
Having a positive relationship with media professionals is one of the best ways to grab their attention. One way to do this is by offering your story as an exclusive.
Instead of reaching out to multiple media outlets to gain the most publicity, allow one organization to have your story first. When you pitch your press release, especially via email, to many different media outlets at the same time, they may not want to cover your story since there is a chance that their competitors will too.
Although getting publicity is becoming increasingly difficult, being educated on the elements that attract the media’s attention, being clear in your pitches and maintaining positive relationships with journalists can help your business gain a media presence. And positive PR can often change a business overnight.
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Author: Adrian Falk, Forbes Councils Member