Imagine that you get a call from an editor of a major magazine or a producer of a network show and they tell you that your company is going to be featured. For many business owners, this seems like a dream, but it can be a reality- even if you are a small business.
Most likely you have a really good story to tell. And chances are that you are an expert in your industry. These are two things that journalists want. The key is learning how to convey that to your dream magazine or news outlet. And you don’t have to be Nike or an author of a best-selling book to achieve it. Here are six ways to help you get the attention of the media.
Know Your Target Media
Dedicate the time to connect with journalists who cover your industry on social media.
Read and watch their stories, comment on them and share them out on social media. There is no better compliment for a journalist than receiving great feedback on their stories. Mostly every journalist is on Twitter. Go there. Find them. And share their content. The more you share and comment on their articles, the more they will get to know you and your business.
Keep Your Press Release Short
Press releases are becoming archaic. Sometimes they are needed. For example, if you have an announcement or an event to tell the media or public about, a press release comes is the way to go. But if you do write one, keep it short. Journalists are extremely busy and you need to grab their attention in a couple of lines. The headline is very important. Be creative to draw them in. If you have photos or videos, definitely include those in your press release.
Craft Your Pitch
A pitch is your story. Public Relations is all about storytelling. And the pitch is your chance to tell your story in a few sentences with key talking points. When writing it , you want you to ask these questions. Why is your story important to the reporter and their readers/viewers? What is the takeaway? What are you doing that’s different? Did something just happen in the world that you can talk about? If so, tell the media!
HARO (Help a Reporter Out) is my favorite resource and it’s FREE! This online service is where reporters, bloggers, and producers put out the stories that they are working on and request sources to provide content. From small blogs to Forbes and Entrepreneur Magazine, the media outlets on here are amazing. The stories come out Monday-Friday at 5:30 am, 12:30 pm and 5:30 pm. The key is to act quickly. If you see a story that would be a good fit for you or your business, respond immediately, even if their deadline is tomorrow. We have garnered dozens of press mentions by using the service and I highly recommend that you join. Did I mention that it is free?
Video is King
Videos are essential in helping you build your brand. You must put content out there. But don’t just put anything online. It should be quality content and useful for your clients or customers. Most importantly- be real. Show them who you are, take them behind the scenes of your company, introduce them to your team, and have fun! And most importantly, don’t sell. Provide value to your viewers. When you pitch to the media, they are going to research you and the more you are on camera giving expert advice, the better chance you have in getting an interview.
Write, Write and Write
The more that information that you provide as an expert, the better chance you have to get news coverage. Look into becoming a contributing writer for media outlets in your industry. Many blogs are looking for contributing writers. For example, Huffington Post and Entrepreneur Magazine have a dedicated page for people to pitch their articles.
There are many other ways to get press coverage, but start with these and you will be on your way to getting your name out there.