Updated: Apr 20
In order to get coverage in the media it is important to know the right journalists. Getting media coverage is a great way to gain exposure for you and your business. This will help you to reach more potential customers and bring more awareness to your brand. Most small businesses do not have the budget to have continuous professional help with this. Reporters are always on the hunt for good stories, but what is defined as a good story does not mean the same thing to you as it does to a journalist. Editors and journalists can receive hundreds of emails a day from people pitching themselves or their story. So it is easy for to get lost in their inbox. The following are tips you can use to raise your profile to journalists.
Decide Who Your Want to Reach
Every media outlet targets a different audience. It is important to make sure you have done your research on which media outlet would work best with your business. An important to thing to remember is that your profile and pitch are relevant to the right journalist. Knowing what stories each media outlets cover enables you to tailor your profile and gives you a better chance of being featured.
Be Realistic in Expectations
Securing media coverage, especially at a national level is not easy. Building a good media profile can often take months. So do not be disappointed if you’re not an overnight success. Some journalists will completely ignore people’s pitches, but it is important to stay persistent and consistent in your profiles. It is also good to add any comments that might be of interest to the journalist.
Be Prepared to Follow Up
If a journalist is interested in using you for an article they will generally get back to you within a day or two. Newsrooms can often time be very busy so do not be afraid to chase them by email. Once you have chased them a few times and there has been no reply it is safe to assume the journalists is no longer interested. While it is fine to offer the same story to a different media outlet it is important to be upfront with what you are doing. If a journalists sees your story somewhere else, particularly before there’s is due to run they won’t be very happy with you; It is simply not worth losing that relationship.
Be Easy to Reach
To a journalist there is nothing more frustrating than having an expert source that is hard to reach. Journalists work under tight deadlines and need quick responses. In order to be more accessible to them it is important to be easy to reach by phone or email. What usually happens is that if you are not easy to reach, you most likely will not be contacted again by that journalist or media outlet. Along with being easy to reach, it is also important to avoid fancy jargon. Put as much detail into your pitch or profile as possible. This will encourage journalists to get back to you quicker and helps to avoid any confusion.
Do Something Unique
It is important to remember that the media are always looking for something different. To stand out from others make a statement about why your brand is unique, or make a personal comment about why you are different from other businesses. Nobody has the same personal story. So make sure you use that to your advantage when pitching to journalists. Also let the journalists know what areas you are an expert in. This will make them more inclined to use you in a feature as you are an expert in that field, and therefore more knowledgeable on that particular subject.