If you want to get publicity for your business, you need to know and play by the rules of the game – their game. Traditional media (both print and broadcast), bloggers and influencers with a big social media following can be great outlets for exposing your brand and building a reputation, but how do you get their attention and a response? Here are some tips.
- Know what they want – and understand it may not be exactly what you want. Sure you’d like a major profile in a key media outlet, but the outlet or blog you’re targeting may not do profile pieces. The best way to learn about their needs is to become familiar with their approach. Spend time reading their publication or blog, and figure out what they consider newsworthy and appealing to their audience.
- Create a short, pithy pitch to benefit their audience. Let’s say you just got a big new client. You’ve whipped up a press release to share the news. Well, that may not be enough to ‘sell’ the story. However, you may be able to interest a journalist, using a different angle: the steps you took to WIN the business or lessons learned from the loss of one or two sales. Go ahead and send that release, but use it as background, recognizing that the real story is embedded in your friendly, succinct email pitch.
- Don’t assume if a journalist/blogger doesn’t respond they’re not interested. The email may have gone into their spam folder or they overlooked it. Wait a couple of days, then follow up with a phone call. Keep in mind that there’s a fine line between following up and becoming a pest. If they do say ‘no,’ try to find out if there’s another angle that may work.
In this digital age, there’s no end to the online and offline resources available to help you build recognition and respect for your brand. If you decide media exposure can be a valuable adjunct to your marketing program, then venture out…but do so strategically and carefully. Media/blogger relations is all about relationships. Show media and bloggers that you understand the game, and you may score a touchdown.
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