The media are always looking for credible industry sources and great stories to engage their audience, but they can’t interview you if they don’t know about you!
A proactive PR strategy can help create brand exposure, position you as a leader in your field, and generate sales leads. Journalists are working to tight deadlines, and their inboxes are overflowing with pitches.
Here are four key points to consider when reaching out to the media:
CRAFT A NEWSWORTHY STORY
So many organisations overlook genuinely newsworthy opportunities, so by proactively planning ahead for media opportunities, you can capitalise on any innovations, product launches, collaborations or key dates and holidays. Also be sure to keep abreast of topical issues or statistics relevant to your industry that you can localise. It’s important to remember that journalists are trained to identify newsworthy stories that engage their audience, so if your media release is just a cover for an advertorial or sales pitch, they’re sure to hit delete!
CHOOSE ENGAGING INTERVIEW TALENT
Who else can be quoted to add weight to your story? A well-rounded story consisting of an expert opinion and case study on a topical matter helps to capture a journalist’s attention – for example if you are an advocate for the aged care sector, including a client to speak of their experience will put a face to your story and support your key messages. It is not necessary for you or your supporting talent to have media experience, but it is important to choose talent who genuinely support your key messages and are reliable for any scheduled media opportunities. Journalists are well trained to make you feel comfortable in an interview – it’s a win-win for everyone if they can get a great story.
DON’T FORGET THE VISUALS!
One of the most common mistakes people make when pitching to TV and print media is overlooking the importance of strong visuals to complement the story. Suggest a location and relevant props or products that help tell the story with your interview talent to help the journalist visualise what it could look like, or alternatively you can include a link with good quality visuals for them to use.
KNOW THE MEDIA YOU’RE PITCHING TO
Take the time to research media outlets and understand who their target audience is and the type of content they produce to determine if it is a good fit for the story you are pitching. This quality over quantity – taking the time to tailor your pitch for selected media outlets is likely to get better results than a generic mass mailout to every media email address you can find. Consider what lead time they might need and schedule your pitch accordingly – for example, print magazines are working months ahead of their publication date, while TV news bulletin stories are generally confirmed on the day.
Putting yourself forward to the media can feel intimidating at first, but it gets easier with practise – in fact,
you may find you quite enjoy it, and with a proactive PR strategy, you’ll start to build momentum and mutually beneficial relationships with the media.
Follow Creative Concepts PR on social media for more PR tips and upcoming Meet the Press events, or visit creativeconceptspr.com.au to purchase the Create Your Own PR Online Course.